Theaussiechallenge Post # 98 Keith

Day 121 20 days to go. Distance today 135km total 11 247km. It’s 6.45pm Monday 5/11/2012 Keith. Oh my deary can you hear the storm blowing attitude outside? We pulled up just in time to find a place to stay, set up Buddy and now tucked away with a cracker jack storm hitting downtown Keith. I’m not surprised as it’s been super muggy all day despite intermittent rain that was refreshing as opposed to a hassle but it didn’t cool down things. Now however the temps dropped a wee bit and by the color of the clouds there’s hail in there somewhere. It put the rumbles of last nights storm to shame. It’s been overcast with rain today as forecasted and full on windy. The gusts were from the side and behind for the most part which is good but tricky with the trucks. I was warned that the Duke Highway is a Truckee mecca being the main route from Adelaide to Melbourne and they were pretty spot on. So the Rubes and I have worked hard riding the smoother shoulder then moving over to the bumpy breakdown lane when we hear the big tonkers approaching. It’s worked out well as we’re safe and sound and managed good kms in the conditions. We’re on track to be in Horsham at a reasonable time in the afternoon on Wednesday so I’m happy. Happier still knowing we’ll see P&P soon for some quality company. I had a crapola sleep last night for whatever reason just couldn’t turn off. I need a crash course in meditiation to blank the mind as it runs like an emu making good zzzzz’s a bit hard until early hours of the morn. This means lots of snooze buttons and craving sleeping in but not long now, 20 sleeps in fact and Rube and I can enjoy some home R&R. It’ll be nice to rest the brain from theaussiechallenge. The cycling’s the easier part, it’s keeping safe and sound and managing the unsupported elements that is the trick that’s for sure. All very good indeedy as I’m learning so much about our country, it’s folk and more about what makes me tick as we continue. 15 minutes later and the storm has passed over elsewhere leaving a freshness in the air and the birds going nuts. Buddy’s so well tied down I think he’s bordering on category 5 cyclone proof but I’m happy not to test that theory. I got an email from Sue and John in Geraldton and they said that the weather over there is very unsettled and unseasonable with storms and hail. Some of that might be finding it’s way across the bite and the SA/Vic border which I heard is on that weather path. But I’m pretty relaxed to deal with what Mother N wants to chuck at us between now and the 25/11. We’re both so focused on home now and seeing out each day safe and sound so I can enjoy my family time which I’m crazy hanging out for bigtime yay big. Today was hard work especially after a lack of zzzzz’s and tidy wide legs from yesterday’s hills. But we chipped through the weather and kms with lots of breaks. I even treated myself to a custard slice at a bakery in the small dot town of Culburra. We passed through a handful of towns today which I love as it breaks up the day and a far cry from the long stretches we’ve known through WA. This SA stretch must be one of Australia’s major wheat industry areas as the fields have been the main feature for days now. The wind blows allot of fine dust and bitey bugs off the fields that’s been playing havoc with the sinus. I’m such a snotty monster each night with a socially unsound routine of clearing the nostrils ready to face it again the next day. You probably don’t need to know that but hey it’s all part of the day and it’s the inglorious bits that keep it colorful and me and Rube giggling at each other as we bumble through. Thank goodness for a sense of humor which I think has been the essential ingredient to manage the lows and groans. I think about Dave Alley allot during the days for inspiration. Do you know he would have completed 3 laps to our 1 when we finish on the 25th. The man’s a super hero jet start freek and I take my camo cappy off to you mate for being a stand alone Ambassador amongst white ribbon ambassadors. It’s wonderful to know you’ll be there in Sandgate when we peddle in on the Sunday so thankyou for making the effort to be there to support us yay you!!!. . There’s two roadhouses in the town of Keith (bad name for a town by the way!!!!) one at each end. We asked at the first one if there was a freebie camp spot tucked away somewhere and the man was so friendly and said we could camp in parklands in town. But when we got there it felt so open and I was a bit uncomfortable so we asked at the next raodhouse that has a handful of cabins attached. They let me pitch buddy on a grassed area which is awesome and it gives me a chance to turn off for the night knowing we’re tucked away safe. I’m very happy we’re not at a rest area with the weather being so unpredictable tonight but tomorrow is forecast clear again hopefully for a good run over the border into Victoria. We should get close to the town of Nhill tomorrow leaving 80 odd kms to Horsham for Wednesday. I’m loving having both Telstra and Optus service over the last days. I checked emails this morning before heading and there were a handful of emails from new friends. I’ll include a few snippets to finish the post for this evening. Ohh I nearly forgot, I scored a handful of donations when I first arrived at the Keith roadhouse. Thank you Jill ($17) and Deb ($12) and a gent who didn’t hang round but emptied his coin pocket ($2.20). Cash donations $2561.20 Talk soon x

“What a beautiful post……..so nicely written, I felt that me and my lovely labrador were with you and Rube whilst you were writing …………..thankyou !! Ricky”

“G’day Maree, just been catching up with your blog and awesome photos so thought to send you this email. Really felt for you when reading the Nullabour posts, even though you didn’t say much about how hard it was we can imagine how tough it was. When we drove along there we had the luxury of waiting out the head-winds!! You and Rube are doing amazingly well and meeting so many great people. Glad to hear that the gortex jacket has been useful, stay safe. With our warmest wishes, Graham & Thea”

“Hi Maree, We,ve been reading your blogs since your cycle across the Nullabor, and thoroughly enjoying them.. Well done you clever girl. What a great achievement & not that long for you & Rube! now! You sound like your having the time of your lives & we,re still in awe of you. Sue and John”

“Hi Maree,Good to see you are doing so well,I’m the guy you first met near Nanutarra then at Donnybrook.It’s great to follow your adventure.I don’t know if you remember me telling you about the Balladonia Straight 90 miles it’s a cracker AY, I saw the photo you took near Ongerup and noticed my old cycling buddy Greg Pye.Gee what a small world.good luck mate keep safe and keep smiling chat again soon Ben”

“You girls are really chalking up the kms…well done and in that heat!! Take care and drink lots and then lots more and keep ticking those kms off. 21 days to go..amazing!!! XX Janet”

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About shecyclesolo

If you could dream up the most wildest adventure imaginable what would it be? Between jobs and craving new experience, I decided to indulge the challenge. This is what I conjoured with a promise to come home safe and smiling. I hope you enjoy the 1080 days of stories as much as I will sharing them. "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you've imagined.' H D Thoreau

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