My great mate (second bro') and fellow speedway fan, Angus arrived so we took in some of Mt Gambier's sights
Blue Lake, which was formed by super-heated steam blasting a hole in the crust and is the town's water supply.
Next it was off to Avalon raceway, near Melbourne. We arrived early enough for the open pit time, seeing the cars in final preparation...
Freshly arrived from Oklahoma, delayed by snow, was NSW-born and now professional sprintcar driver based in Minnesota, Brooke Tatnell, who has won the title eight times since 1994.
The four previous meetings were great, but the A Main at Avalon was the most exciting of the lot, the cars in first five positions vying over 35 laps with only one stoppage.
The victory went to Jamie Veal, popular Victorian-based driver and local hero.
So ended the speedway phase of the trip.
After a few days with family in Melbourne, it was off to Drouin for Austerlitz II.
Magnificent to be back in the country, which is still green in mid-summer; a great contrast from home.
The friendly King Parrots, encouraged by Tim over the years, came to join us on the deck.
For this version of the battle, both sides had historical set-up, but free reign concerning initial orders.
Buxhowden's wing, Langeron and Ducturov headed into the white unknown...
The fog lifted, the Emperor waved his hat, sending his marshals to their commands.
In the centre, Bernadotte's I Corps (my command) supported Soult's IV Corps, with Murat's heavy cavalry in support of both.
Looking south, the masses of Buxhowden's wing were opposed only by a division of Soult; until Davout arrived.
Langeron was busily engaged with peasants, I mean pheasants, in the pheasantry.
That's where we left the game last night. Today it is hotting up, on and off the table.
Off the table a cyclone off the Queensland coast is sending down hot air, bringing the forecast max. to 40ºC before a cold front coming from the west that will deliver showers and a drop to a mere 20ºC tomorrow (I'll be searching for 'me' thermals)! On the table Lannes is strongly engaged in the north, Davout in the south and Soult, Murat and Bernadotte are driving for the centre.
More on that in the next instalment.