About three hours. The company main base is situated in a town that the owner/managing director lives in and, like a lot of tourism companies, the business evolved to fill a local need and then expanded to a larger city.
I wasn’t sure about where their tours started from so I was relieved to find that it was a Perth pickup – a three hour commute for extended two week touring is not insurmountable but probably not the best thing before/after a long day of work.
I honestly don’t know how the interview went, which is rare for me. I may get extremely nervous before these things but I am never nervous during them. Usually I can tell whether or not I’ve got the job but yesterday I had no idea. I had the impression they wanted me on their team but they also were struggling with the idea of how to fit me in.
Most small tourism companies try to employ driver/guide teams of already established couples because it cuts their costs (one hotel room instead of two). As a single worker, I am automatically more expensive to them and my skills have to be commeasurably more valued. I do have an advantage these days; the upgrade to my licence means that I can drive/lead as required but it depends on the circumstances.
A sadly negative thing about the on-road style of life is that male tour guides/drivers are as unprofessional as you could imagine when it comes to sexual relationships along the way. I have never yet met a male in this industry that would keep it in his pants, given the circumstances. I certainly would never, ever be relationship with one of them because I simply couldn’t trust them. Their significant others must know this about their partners and, consequently, they do not like having a female as part of the road crew team.
Also, I definitely can’t see a tour leader happily accepting me as a female driver. I might be wrong. I hope I am. It just hasn’t been my past experience.
So, in summary, I think I would like to work for this company. I think they would like me to work for them. I don’t think they, as a small operation, can manage to make it happen.