It began like any other Sunday morning. I fired up my laptop and went to the yahoo page to check my email. In the ‘top ten’ news links, I noticed the phrase “wicked campers” and did a double take. You see, my parents are the owners, and I know from past experience that while no news can be good news, good news is not usually “news” to the journalists. We’d already managed to annoy the Queensland Premier Anna Bligh--so what the heck was happening now? How had we gone from being silly in the back yard painting flowers on a rental car called “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” to being a multi-national operator with depots all over Australia and several other countries besides?
Even though you’ve probably seen our vans out on the road in Australia, you most likely don’t know my parents, and you definitely won’t know me, their daughter. This is their story, told as much as possible in their own words, even though written by me. I’ll give you fair warning though, from the get go; in the words of the late great Jane Austen, I am a partial, prejudiced and ignorant historian who makes no pretence of being totally objective. After all, truth is not just facts. History and biography alike are always a specific person’s point of view, and mine will be no different in that respect.
Anyway, back to the Sunday morning in question, January 2010. My stomach tightened as I read the news item which said that Wicked had 86 vans in Queensland and only four of those were now legally allowed to be on the road. This was news to my parents, as they soon informed me, since we actually have more than six hundred vans registered in Queensland. This didn’t make sense—where was the false information coming from and who was feeding it to the papers? I soon had a text from one of my brothers, asking what was going on. I didn’t know yet, though I was able to say it didn’t look as if they had new information since the “wicked rents out death traps” story A Current Affair ran earlier last year. Soon dad was being coached by his PR team on how to respond to the journalists, mum was on the phone to me telling me more about what was going on, and the whole crazy merry go round kicked off again. Welcome to our slightly insane world.