|Nov 14-15||Auto-X||Marina, CA|
||STOA Christmas Party||Mountain House, Woodside|
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Pat, Charlie, and Tom’s Big Adventure in Australia
By Tom Hall and Patrick King
As many of you already know, Peter Thomson has been coming to America to attend our Tigers United’s and SUNI’s since 1974. The Australian Sunbeam clubs have always held their National event just about a week before we typically have our meet in June. This year, they decided to reschedule their meet towards the end of September. When Pat King and I learned of this, we thought it would be a really great idea to turn this rare opportunity into a vacation with our wives and attend their National Sunbeam Meet. Along the way we could make some new friends, finish training some TAC Inspectors, TAC some Tigers, and see some sights in OZ.
We arranged to stay with Peter in Sydney and travel to and from the event with our other Australian friends and STOA members, Ken and Louise Jacobs, and the rest of their Australian traveling entourage. Charlie Ockels decided he would make a detour on his way home from the Philippines and join us as well. The actual meet was to be located in Loxton, South Australia, which is a three day drive from Sydney.
Peter Thompson at his Shop in Sydney
Bette and I left a few days early, to minimize the effect of jet lag, but Charlie, Pat and Kelly flew in a day before we were scheduled to leave for our cross country adventure. That evening we all walked up to one of Pete’s favorite Pubs for dinner. Turns out, this pub specializes in selling the steaks and you barbeque them yourself on a spit inside the pub. Sounds like a pretty smoky place, but they have a good vent system, so it’s almost like home except your jockeying for position on the grille with about 12 other people trying to do the same thing at the same time. The departure morning arrived, all too soon, and Pete put some rock & roll on his stereo and turned up the volume to drive out the sleepiness. We had rented a Nissan SUV to carry us and our luggage. We were pretty well packed when Pete told us that we were going to have to carry Charlie’s luggage also, so we repacked a little tighter. Ken & Louise arrived in their Tiger, and we all greeted each other. Then we all got into our assigned vehicles and headed out to a place called Richmond. Following closely behind the lead Tiger, we hit the Toll roads to get out of town. Unfamiliarity makes driving a real challenge especially when you are driving on the wrong side of the road. Missed lane changes can leave you lost and left behind, so we were all watching the leader’s moves very carefully. Arriving at Richmond, we headed to a local McDonalds drive-in to meet and join up with more members of our entourage. Heading out, the entourage now consists of 5 Tigers, a Holden (Chevy) station wagon, and our Nissan SUV.