Funny, i was going through some old papers yesterday and found,a stack of brochures from my trips in Europe in 1978, both courtesy of Sundowners.
Did a 6 week Cossack then a 9 week Europa as they were called then.
Our courier on the Cossack was Gary Griffin and driver the famous Darcy trevor Waller.
on the Europa, courier was Bruce Ryall and driver the happy Ross w Crook.
Ah the memories, hangovers and frustrations i think our europa was Darcys last trip with Sundowners,they gave him the flick I think, I remember we all wrote a letter to sundowners telling them what a great bloke he was and how he saved us etc etc. We were driving down some poky russian Highway heading to Rumania it was raining some peasant on a motorbike( I think) cut in front of Darcy and the bus swerved and we ended up in a ditch, not a problem expect he coped some rib bruising( or something like that, it hurt) the russkies carted him off to hospital, the bottom bunkers of the bus were damaged, we eventually got out of the USSR into Rumania , then the problems started, the motor on the bus was sort of stuffed, we made it to krakow Poland , Darcy can probably tell the rest of the story without me telling a short story long. I saw the link with his photos named but can;t find them, all the photos I took on camera 1 are slides and camera two are in print will have to dig them up and try to find out how to post them.
Still keep in contact with some of the people we travelled with, others would love to know what ever happened to them.
Friends of the sundowners staff, i remember Feathers!, think I met Rocky, a good mate of mine Craig Duncan worked as a courier and a mate of his Geoff Cashell. Will have to think of more.
Good to hear from you John, thanks for your input. I can buy into the later part of your story. My self and Gary Green (Buddha) came out with a replacement coach to get you all back to London.
For posting photos you have a variety of options and it is not really all that difficult. You can view the section on the "Your Pictures" page of the website that gives you a step by step approach, I can email you a more condensed guide or Col Davidson has offered to assist anyone over the phone. Personally I would appreciate seeing any photos of Gary Griffin as firstly I have no idea of his whereabouts and Gary and I went to school together.
the memories of some names are a bit blurry, yep you picked us up in berlin , boy does our last night there bring back memories, I met some yank soldiers at the bar after our boot drinking session, got invited over to there drinking session and wrote myself off drinking little bottles of stuff caled keumeling (I think thats the spelling)
I will have to dig about for the photos of gary and buy one of those slide scanners, from what i can remember he was going to be a teacher or was training to be one and came from Adelaide.
Where is the Your pictures section. I only have a basic page that only has posts on it ?
John go to sundownersadventures.com once there you can email me direct from the "Home" page plus you will see down the left hand side of the page the indecies to click on to go to those other pages in turn. You can also find the link on Facebook if you search sundowners.
Aha a light bulb moment, when I googled sundowners the fist page I found was the forum page via nabble. I didn;t do the website, mmm anyway, love the photos, now have to get the old ones out and start scanning.The background music is a great reminder of the era.
thanks for the info
I don t know if we ever met but my wife remembers you from the Cossack Tour with Darcy in 1978.
Her name is Kerrie and back then was Kerrie Devereux.
Darcy is living on the Central Coast NSW and recently retired from Transport Workers Union.
yep haven;t seen kerrie for a few years now, we moved from Menai and bought a property up near Lismore about 9 years ago. Give her my regards, We did meet somewhere can't remember where, Kerrie did tell me one day when she told me how you two got together, good story.
Gday John, Garry Griffin here. My son has been doing some research for his own trip next year and came across this site- it's great to read about a few old faces. They're a lot older now!
I have already sent an email to vicar (I haven't seen him since that memorable rescue trip to Berlin). Love to talk to you at length later but for now you might be interested in this link. Its the official journal we kept on the coach during that Coastal trip, and the comments of passengers along the way. I typed it up in an idle moment a few years ago. The account of the overnight train trip from Krakow to Berlin might bring back a few memories!
http://travelsaroundmymind.blogspot.com.au/2008/12/1978-europe-russia-sundowners-trip.html I hope it opens up. Enjoy!
Hi Gary and John
Its good to hear from you both I hope all is well and lifes been good to you
If you would like to catch up. and have a chat my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org or my mobile number is
0419631476 hope to hear from you
John, I don't know if you will see this as it is a while since you posted your message. I have moved back to Goulburn (again) and do a bit of volunteer work at Riversdale, a National trust property. I help out in the kitchen. One of the other volunteers is Tom O'Shea. We were chatting one day and he mentioned that he had been a driver for Sundowners in 1978 and knew Garry. The other night I started to have a search on Google the find out a bit more about Sundowners. I was amazed when I found an account of the trip we went on. You never did make it back to my place to see the slides. I have dug them out and are scanning them. If you see this, let me have your email address and when I have finished I will put them on Picassa and give you the link for them. My email address is email@example.com
If there is anyone else out there who was on the trip and sees this and would like a link to the slides then just let me know.
PS There are only 250 of them so I will pull my finger out and try to get them done ASAP.
Pat talk about people coming up from nowhere, no worries will send you the current. I live up the north coast now, near Lismore. Someone told me you moved, ( don't know who though) My stuff is still on slides too.
jumped on this page by chance, and found replies from Gary, Darcy and Pat, had a read of Garys journal, it brought back some more memories. Then it got me thinking what happened to Chuck and Wes. I googled their names and fired off a couple of emails. Will now wait to see if I get any replies.
we move quickly Pat, I still haven't done mine. But what I did after the last post was google a couple of names, Wes and chuck the two Canadians. Wes lives in Edmonton and is a lawyer, Chuck aka peter westgate is a crown prosecutor in Ontario. he replied to me and I told him about this years reunion, but as usual I stuffed it up, thought it was November. He visits NZ regularly to see some relys, so I will try to find out if he is interested in coming that extra distance.