RV caretakers bid farewell to Monto
IN JUST three years, Paul and Kerry Bowermann have become a critical part of Monto's tourism industry.
The couple, who had previously travelled across Australia in a motorhome, became caretakers of the town's RV stopover after seeing a notice from Monto Magic Tourism.
But now they've decided it's time to move on and get back to seeing the country while they still can.
"We've got our own lives to lead now,” Paul said.
Kerry is disabled with arthritis from the hips down after taking a nasty fall which broke her arm in three places, and Paul, formerly a truck driver, became her carer.
"There are times where the pain is so bad I can't move and he has to dress me,” Kerry said.
"That's why we bought a caravan so we can live and travel while we can do it,” Paul said.
They didn't initially intend to stay as long as they did, but a lack of immediate replacements led to them becoming more essential.
After some initial confusion the first couple of months, they both quickly settled into the role.
"When we came up here, I realised the visitor information centre wasn't being utilised so I took that on and now it gets a lot of really nice comments,” Kerry said.
"We finally got the good name for the town and we get a lot of people returning now, coming back and spending money up the street,” Paul said.
Despite being travellers themselves, being on call at the stopover full-time hasn't given them much of a chance to explore the region themselves.
The job had a number of difficulties attached, such as costs, and occasionally required them to play the bad guy.
"The advice we'd give to the next ones is enjoy it while you can and don't put up with crap from anybody,” Paul said.
"You've got to be tough because some people think they're entitled to stay when they're not fully contained, use water without paying.”
The new caretakers, Robyn and Jim Piper are set to arrive around September 28, while Paul and Kerry will move on the following week.