Camping in Western Australia

Kiyoko Fukuda
Japan Auto Camping Federation

This rally was most wonderful. The 11th National rally in Australia was held from 28th Dec. to 6th Jan. We, three Japanese flew from Japan. We were relieved to see our friends, Mr.and Mrs. Thomas at the Perth airport at 3 o'clock in the morning. They drove us 20 minutes directly to Advent Park, rally venue.

On 28th Dec. the opening ceremony started with about 700 people in 314 caravans and 38 cabins covered all states, Tasmania Island and New Zealand.

We didn't expect our national anthem to be played in a camping rally. We were requested to raise Japanese flag (rented from the Council) up by 8:00 am and down by 6:00 p.m., which is their custom. New Year's eve was best I have ever experienced.

7:30 at night everybody dressed something that begins with your first initial gathered in a big tent. I wore Kimono as in my name Kiyoko. These costumes at the Ball were funny or crazy characters such as "B" for bumble bee, "K" Kleenex tissue, "M" Mickey Mouse, "P" pumpkin. We celebrated the New Year six times due to different time zones between the states adding Japan, which was one hour earlier than Perth. No wonder we were a little hoarse next morning. All in all it was a fantastic party.

What wonderful days we had! We were welcomed and looked after very well by all the different Australian clubs who were interested in our customs and tried to teach us their customs.

The organized tours and daily programs were also a pleasure. We were glad having spent New Year days surrounded by fragrant eucalyptus trees, the bright red flowering gum trees, beautiful blue skies and good people. After making many friends we look forward to coming back to the 12th National rally after 3 years. Finally I put sincere thank Ken Paynter, John Litjens and their committee for making us stay a happy one.

January 2002(Asia-Pacific News No.7)

Mark of Asia Pacific Commission

Japanese Site