Theaussiechallenge Post # 26 Soudan
Day 27 143 days to go. Distance: today 140km total 2530km. It’s 7.30pm Thursday 2/8/12 Soudan Rest Area. There are these marsupial mice visiting our campsite and they’re so brazen one just came right up under my leg. Cheeky little critters. Lets just say i’ll make sure everything is tightly sealed so hopefully they won’t carry Rube, and the super tent with me in it,away during the night. Aside from out visitors it’s a beautiful camp and Ive just spent the last couple of hours sitting with a bunch of vanners from Euchucha, Victoria. They’re fun folk all around 70 and into line dancing and Probus much like my folks. They’re totally fascinated with what we’re doing and were asking a million questions. They even took some video footage to show their Probus group back home. They’re all inspired now to get the bikes out when they get home and start peddling again. They were telling me about a woman by the name of Heather, who has been cycling around the world and still going strong at 70. They actually know her and I’ve asked if they can make contact and connect me up with her. How interesting must she be?They’re also playing with the idea of traveling through Mongolia and China so we exchanged emails and they’ll be in contact down the track with any questions we may be able to help with. I really enjoyed sharing some of our Asian travel stories with them……OK one of the little blighters just tried to run off with a rolled cigarette this is serious. Mmmmmmm dinner’s going to be a social affair I fear. It’s a full moon tonight and it came up big and beautifully orange as the sun set so stunning. It’s come up now into the night sky as brazen as the mice 🙂
The day started exquisitely with the sunrising and moon setting as we woke with the birdlife on the billabong. We packed up camp to their calls and morning business as usual. Once ready I sat with a cuppa and took it all in one more time. Ann who I met last night was out for a walk and saw us off. She was telling me about a fish market in Seattle who restructured their customer service and came up with three basic practices for their employees. Firstly to make someone else’s day, secondly give people you’re looking after your full attention, and last but not least have fun. We agreed it’s not a bad philosophy in any circumstances what do you reckon?
Back again. I had to move camp. I looked up and there was a mouse chewing on Ruge’s travel bag handle. Enough!!!!! No we’re right in the middle of the rest area away from any grasses and amongst the other vanners. And not a critter in sight yayayayayayaya!!!!!! As we peddled off Ann called out, ‘see ya Rube.’ I called back, ‘Rube likes you Ann.’
About 20km down the road we crossed the Northern territory border how very cool and of course pickies taken to capture the next stage of our travels. The landscape changed almost instantly with the reddest of dirt by the roadside and pale yellow grasses covering flat flat pastures and horizon for as far as the eye can see. Occasional we would spot grazing cattle but otherwise the land was sparse except for the birdlife which was alive as ever. Just before Avon Downs this car stopped in front of us and two Brissie fellas from the car magazine, ‘Top Gear’ asked if they could take a picky of Rube and I with their car. Rube of course was posing before I could answer!! Apparently it was ok with her. They are on a road trip in an American Chrysler and writing a feature article about Australia’s own Highway 66 which is nowadays the Barkley Highway. Nathan was the photographer and Bruce the journalist who had a ten galloon cowboy hat on. We got asked a bunch of questions about what we’re doing and Nathan got some pickies. The lads donated $20 and both made an oath which was the icing to a big fun experience. Rube wants a ten gallon hat 🙂 We exchanged email addresses and they’re going to send us a copy of the photos which is awesome. We said our goodbyes and thank you’s. I snuck in some cheek saying,’and I didn’t even make fun of your 10 galloon hat.’ Bruce came straight back with,’that’s a 4 litre hat out here thank you.’ Very quick and funny nice!!
We watered up in Avon Downs and met a family from Melbourne who have travelled the remote roads up north and across to Broome. They invited Rube and I to stay with them when we come through Melbourne which was awesome. I gave them a card as they’re keen to follow us on the blog and will email when we’re closer their way.
It’s very nice now not to be surrounded by scurrying and chewing so speaking of chewing it’s time for dinner yay. With donations and oaths rom the lads today, that brings our total to $494.35 with 28 oaths in 27 days.Talk soon x