The Battistuzzis: on the road and living the dream
THE last couple of months have seen a change of pace for Casino residents Ilene and Robert Battistuzzi and their 'spoiled' cat.
They used to own a six-bedroom home, but have recently downsized in a big way, swapping their house for a $110,000 motorhome.
They are now travelling all over Australia and laundromats have become a regular place for them to stop.
“Even when we lived in our house we'd come to the laundromat because we had tank water,” Mrs Battistuzzi said.
“A lot of people on tank water use laundromats because you don't want to waste what little water you might have.
“We save up all our dollar coins for the washing - we don't spend those.
“Although we don't have the big house anymore, we still have to do the regular chores like everybody else.
“We still have to wash, do the cleaning and the cooking.
“But doing the laundry is good because it gives me an hour away and I can just sit and read a book.”
The couple has just returned from Portland in NSW, where they spent four weeks with family.
“It was great. It was actually very different,” Mrs Battistuzzi said.
“I've never really been out of Casino before, so we had a good time.”
Their next adventure will be in Victoria, where they will travel along the Great Ocean Road.
Perth is also on the list of 'places to see'.
“We like going to the little towns as well. You meet some really nice people on the road,” Mrs Battistuzzi said.
“Everyone told us that people would be rude and ignore us, but we haven't had that at all.
“You don't even need to stay at a caravan park - you can just pull up on the side of the road.
“But we have one rule. If you pull up at 4.30pm and no-one else has stopped within the hour, then go somewhere else.
“It's always better to have other people around - it's safer.”
Even the family pet, Mr Cat, is enjoying life in a motorhome, but Mrs Battistuzzi is reluctant to take him into laundromats with her.
“He just loves travelling in the motorhome. He sits up on the dash and he's quite happy,” she said.
“He was rescued from behind a washing machine, so there's a bit of an association.
“But now he doesn't like loud noises.
“He's really quite spoiled, although at first we thought he was a girl.”
The Battistuzzi's said they rarely argued while travelling, despite spending long days in the motorhome.
“We're just having a good time,” Mrs Battistuzzi said.
“We've had the motorhome for about eight weeks now and it has been so much fun.
“We don't miss our big house at all.
“It doesn't even really matter where we go. We just go.
“The person driving is usually the one who makes the decision.”