The shire is taking over the running of its landfill, and not renewing the contract of the company that was running it for us. I have been writing the new operation policy and manual. On Thursday I spent the day mapping the tip with my hand held Etrex GPS to mark where all the various tip areas are and were; the animal pits, asbestos and medical waste pits, etc… all a bit of a mess really. I did a lot of walking and tired myself out well and truly. Driving around the perimeter track in my Shire car (Toyota Aurion) I came to a tree across the track I could not shift it and there was nowhere to turn for a distance, and I had to back out. That is when I discovered the tree stump.
The panelbeater quoted about $2,400.
The Boss said “Shit happens”.
After puncturing and ruining a $180 tyre on the same car the week before, and bending and breaking my gear lever and link on the motor bike the weekend before that, I was feeling a bit stressed. As if I am losing control.
But the rule of three applies. That is it for now. Touch wood.
On Friday I drove to Manjimup to have a look at a well-run landfill, and to talk to the operations manager, a very helpful chap named Klaus. I was impressed with the organisation and gained some useful insights from the visit. I spent one and a half hours with Klaus, including the time to buy him a coffee afterwards at the Manjimup Tree Museum, which serves an excellent coffee and makes the best meat pie I have had in Australia, or indeed anywhere else, for a very long time.
To get to Manjimup from Katanning is a three hour drive on cruise control at the speed limit.
I let my GPS take me, and she led me down some interesting and narrow roads through Orchid Valley, Chowerup and Perup , then in the middle of a forest she suddenly threw a wobbly, and decided she was lost. She was telling me in her plummy Lara Croft voice that I should turn back and find a road. I was on one that had been clearly signposted to Manjimup. Then she told me to turn left onto a non-existent road then right onto a gravel track that clearly went in the wrong direction. As I continued to ignore her, she went sullenly silent and I steadfastly drove on in what I believed was the right direction. She seemed to pick up another imaginary road at right angles to the one I was on, and told me to turn onto it. I ignored her advice and carried on and as we flashed over the imaginary line, she lapsed into silence once more, showing me pointedly on her screen that I was now driving in a blank green area with no road in sight. Just as she does when I take her into a nature reserve. Then,suddenly, a road appeared on the screen. “Recalculating route” she said cheerfully, as if nothing had been wrong. Pause… “Drive on for 6.7 kilometres”. Back to sanity.
Maybe she got lost in the trees.
Manjimup is a good sized town. The Town centre and shopping area is much larger than Katanning and the Shire has a town population about equal to that of our entire shire, with a futher 2000 or so country dwellers. Still not big enough to have a McDonalds, KFC or Hungry Jack’s (what they call Burger King in WA) though. I saw it does have a Subway however. Also they have a Chicken Treat, which we have also, but which is more avoidable even than KFC. I’m glad Klaus told me of the Tree Museum Cafe.
Before I headed home, I had a quick look around, and spotted some woolly slippers on special at a shoe shop. Great. No more cold feet at home. That has been a real problem. It can be feckin freezing here. And my flat is cold.
At 3pm I set off home by a different route. At first I let Lara have her head, but almost immediately she took me onto a dead end road that ended where some not-yet-made paper road exists only in cyber space. She wanted me to turn right and follow the imaginary road back to the road on which we had come in. I wanted to explore a different route on the way home, so I told her to take me via Bridgetown and Boyup Brook. Very sensible to set way points on the way. Shall do that on future long trips.
Good roads all the way home, and once again spent most of the journey on cruise control set just a few kph under the limit of 110. As dusk approached I kept a keen eye out for kangaroos. Three colleagues at work have hit roos in the last fortnight.
Dead on sunset the GPS switched to night mode which I thought was impressive. Half an hour later I arrived at Katanning a few minutes before 6.
After a quick meal of reheated leftovers I was in bed by 7.35 and asleep shortly after.