Thursday, October 8, 2009


A little further digging has revealed that we can do our diver's licences (convert from SA to Tas) on Flinders. (Although it is not just a formality, as it would be if we came from approved countries. Grin trust me, this is a good thing. A South African licence's value ranges from PDG, to which 'which lucky dip did you get that out of?' depending on where and how recently it was obtained. The real thing is still pretty good I reckon. And surviving the not-real thing (ie as possesed by most of the 'taxi' drivers or part-time evangelists (they make their passengers and quite a lot of other road users pray. A lot.)) does make the rest of us careful and defensive drivers. Besides, after Mount West, Mooi River district, (infamous for it's traffic jams on the dirt track out to us. There have been three cars on it. TWICE) Whitemark (pop 170) is a bit more my style than the wild heart-racing metropolis of Hobart. Yes, actually I have been to New York. And Chicago with my co-author Eric Flint. Five lanes of traffic each way and he likes to look at you when he talks to you. And what's worse... they all drive on the wrong side of the road. OK so in reality I have driven in Johannesburg and in Durban, about 5 times or more the population of Hobart and the evangelists and pedestrians such as you will not see outside of India or Africa. There is something about the pedestrian who has never driven themselves: an inability to understand that a car or ute can't just stop like a walking person can. And they pwn the road. And they throng. But a new vehicle and a new set of small rules to obey -I am glad I don't have to do it in a strange town, straight off. Also I have to learn Tasmanian rules. I wonder if these are like Africa rules. Fast at goats, slow at cows. So what's the right response to wallaby? Don't drive after dark?

We also had our little runaround with my son's passport. Boy genius lost it. Anyway, he got a new one... which they sent to Pietermaritzburg 10 hours drive from where he and the receipt are, and where he applied for the new one. Ah well. The way it goes.


  1. I like your header! Very nice.

    We were so fortunate, SA was not on the Approved List here, and we swotted for our tests ... and then when we went, it turned out that SA had been popped on the list like, two weeks previously! So we just converted, without having to write any tests or do any practicals. BUT it was great that we'd swotted because there are differences in driving rules here which one needs to know. The tests are a very good thing, we wouldn't have minded doing them.

    I think your non-fiction book will probably feature a couple of interesting and possibly very amusing chapters on driving on Flinders! :-)

  2. I refuse to be driven through Rome again. Especially by a Napolese. I don't mind them looking at you all the time, it's more the fact that people from Naples tend to talk with their hands...

    The central core of Hobart can be interesting to drive in. All one-way streets, and occaisionally the street becomes a staircase once you get over the top of the hill.

  3. I have always suspected my darling of some Italian blood. Holding her hands is as good as gagging her ;-).

    One ways streets are a joy. I am always going one way aren't I? (why are all these other people goingthe wrong way?)

  4. Great, I love a one way system! I am hoping to have my GPS programmed to Tas, and hopefully it will know where to go?? I have great faith in it finding places.