I’m parked at the free camp spot on Kingston SE’s foreshore in the South East of South Australia. It’s a really lovely site that’s quiet enough to get some work done (while looking at pretty views) and close enough to the township if you want to stroll in and be more social. The locals are lovely here, so friendly, I always enjoy visiting.
I’m working on a project down here, a campaign to Save Nora Creina‘s pristine coastal conservation area from being turned into a golf course. This is one of many trips I’ve made to the Limestone Coast region, meeting the locals, getting the lay of the land and working with the community on extending their campaign. (more on that to come real soon).
So I’m sitting in #homeJames in my favourite corner of the free camp spot when a car pulls up.
“Hey, enjoying the campsite?”
“Hi! Yeah, I love it here, and always love a free camp, especially one this beautiful.”
“Did you find it on WikiCamps?” [an app where you can add and comment on free camping spots around Australia; invaluable for a nomad]
“Yeah I did, a while ago now but I found it there the first time I was in the area.”
“Did you leave a comment there?”
“No, I haven’t actually. I do sometimes but I haven’t with this one yet.”
“Can you, please? You see, we had someone down here recently who bagged the place.”
“Really? Ugh, some people are just idiots. They expect hot showers and shared kitchens and people to clean up their rubbish wherever they go. If you want those sorts of services you go to ‘proper’ campsites – or a hotel! I prefer this sort myself.”
“Yeah, well, you see this Council is quite rare; they provide this camp spot for free but they also run the caravan park here too. We want to make sure this site remains free, so it would be really useful if you added a comment, you know, to show that was only one negative amongst many positives?”
“Sure! I’d be happy to. And thank you for caring enough to ask.”
We have the usual chat about where I’m from, where I’ve been, what I do, where I’m going next. I tell him about the campaign in Nora Creina. He says “but there’s already a golf course down there, isn’t there?” I agree, there’s one in Robe, another here in Kingston, one in Millicent and Beachport and another development just approved for Kangaroo Island… we chat about the absurdity of personal profits overulling concern for the environment. I tell him that I’m about to publish a survey and website and make a short film about it all (which is what I’m sitting here working on as he drove up).
I wish I had something to give him now so he could contribute and pass it around the town, but it’s not ready yet. So I ask for his email address so I can forward it to him when it’s live. Without hesitation he tells me his address, being careful to spell it all out so I have it down correctly. I ask his name, “Rowdy”, he says. We share a grin appropriate for such a moniker and say our goodbyes. As he leaves I ponder what else about this lovely gentleman lead to the nickname. Maybe I’ll ask him when I send the email.
Thanks Kingston SE. You’ve reinforced my love for this spot. Expect your WikiCamps comment before the end of the day x