AUSTRALIA Page 8 – South Australia - January 2007.

Australia, the adopted homeland of both Mal and Lee. The only continent under one government and the country we both love. The picture above is the “skyline” of our city, you can click on the picture to get a larger image. Perth is one of the most isolated regional capital cities in the world. There are so many things to say about our country that I simply do not know where to begin...


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First, let me say something about my writing style. I am passionate about some issues, for example, Wildlife, Roads and their Users, “Rip Off's”, Corporate Deception, etc... I tend to say what I think and sometimes, it appears harsh and unforgiving. As far as the worst aspects of the above subjects are concerned, the “perceptions” are mine and I stand by the feelings I describe or words I write. Having said all of the above, over 80% of what I write is positive!

We leave “Our Hopes for 2007,” as they are our thoughts at the time; you will see how things change rapidly!

Our hopes for 2007: We want to go from Adelaide to the ferry in Melbourne and cross to Tasmania. Many, if not most “Round Australia” travellers, including cyclists, do not include Tasmania. We hope to spend what is “normally” the hottest period in what is “normally” the coolest part of Australia. After Tasmania we hope to complete the coastal parts of Victoria then along the coast into NSW and Queensland. We will go as far up the coast as we can without having to double back or go off the sealed roads. We are not really equipped for cycling off the bitumen.

The 20-30% of Road Train drivers are far too mentally ill, consequently are beyond any form of help. It is pointless trying to educate the brain dead. The worlds most powerful God, “Money” and votes will always win, hence they cannot be Policed. We have decided that any routes, “owned” by the trucking monopolies will, where possible, be avoided altogether.

We are well aware that the other 70-80% of truckers are good, solid people, we intend no offence to these people.

From Queensland we will pass into the Northern Territory and exit Australia via Darwin. We will have a close look at our funding at this point. Several options are available, “probably” the cheapest being to alight the Europe/Asia continental landmass in Singapore and cycle through Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, China, Mongolia, Russia and into Europe. The most desirable on our part is to go direct to Europe and reverse the above. Of course all these countries will not be possible in one year 2007. Our planning indicates a 5-7yr period. Countless variables exist, politics, religion and all the nasty variables these produce e.g.. terrorism, can force change.

We really want to include New Zealand without breaking the bank. Possibly there may be some “specials” from Sydney as we get near. If they are true to form we will take full advantage of these and break our Australian Leg for a trip through the land of the long white cloud. There is flexibility in our planning – we just need to weigh up the variables e.g.. weather, money, etc..

Thursday January 4th 2007 Adelaide to Perth by Air
Approx.
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time Hr(s) Min. Max speed. kph Max temp we recorded °C
Terrain:
Huge hills. Road Conditions: Poor, No wind Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard)

Car and aircraft. Our bikes remain in Adelaide until our return on or about the 14th January 07. Over two months to pedal here and three hours to fly back.

Amended return date: to Adelaide now 21st January – due to the severe sunburn I inflicted upon myself (see diary Dec 22nd 2006) and the medical complications it caused and is continuing to cause) See our warnings page for the effects of sunburn.

Our friends Tim & Goi took us to Adelaide's airport for the flight back to Perth for my daughters wedding. As is normal for us, the flight was about 55 minutes late. It's a sad fact, that every other flight, except the ones we fly on, are on time..... Oh well!!!

Flying Virgin for the first time... The fare is almost the same as Qantas but there is no service... The chances of even paying for food or drink in the first hour is remote unless you are in the first 5 rows. Such is the corporate world that we live in, promise everything and give nothing. The airline “duopoly” can and will continue to abuse their customers as they have always done. Strongly recommend you bring anything you want to drink/eat with you if you choose to fly with them – especially water, particularly if you have small children. In our case “Row 20” (It seems they manipulated, to make us the last to be served) it was about two hours after we boarded the plane that we were even able to buy refreshments.

The nice thing about the flight was the excellent verbal interaction between staff and passengers.... very humorous.

BTW, Qantas/Virgin is still a duopoly – Jet Star is owned by Qantas. Log onto ETN (http://www.discountairfares.com/lcostaus.htm#fakelowcost) to get the full story on these global scams.

Sunday January 21st 2007 Perth To Adelaide, by Car, Air.
Approx.
k's Average Speed kph Cycling time Hr(s) Min. Max speed. kph Max temp we recorded °C
Terrain:
Huge hills. Road Conditions: Poor, No wind Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard)

First a word about our health. After several bouts of antibiotics for both of us, it seems there is a light at the end of the tunnel. We ceased antibiotics on Monday the 15th of January. We both have continued to improve after that. Looking back, the entire experience since the 22nd of December 2006 has been harrowing. We will both respect the Sun much more after this.



We are both looking forward to re-starting our journey. We have both stated our hope that the traffic will be kinder in 2007 :-)

Catchya Soon

PS. Anyone interested in seeing a few pic's Lee & I took of my daughters wedding can click here

Tuesday January 30th 2007 Adelaide to Clarendon's
Approx.
14.10k's Average Speed 6.52kph Cycling time 2Hr(s) 9Min. Max speed. 67kph Max temp we recorded °C
Terrain:
Huge hills. Road Conditions: Poor, No wind Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard)

Hi all welcome back. Loooong break due to self inflicted injury.... No more about that, except to say I am VERY weak compared with how I felt before. The hills coming out of Adelaide are monstrous... We climbed almost from the time we left the house in Morphett Vale until our stop in Clarendon.. About 1.5 k's from Clarendon we went down our first hill to the river bellow... We will pay a huge price for the thrilling 67kph “white Knuckle” ride. We are camped in Clarendon's “oval” grounds. Locals told us although unofficial everyone does it – and providing we all play the game and keep things clean, it should remain a gem of a place.



Our intention is to follow the coast to Melbourne then cross by ferry to Tassie. Todays ride was woefully slow and interspersed with many “recovery stops”. The “in saddle” time was about double the riding time.. Mans short hills were simply too steep to get up without stopping..... and stopping often at that!

Not much more to say so will close for this our first night on the road in a month.... Catchya Later.

Wednesday January 31st 2007 Clarendon to Macclesfield.
Approx.
26.14k's Average Speed 7.76kph Cycling time 3Hr(s) 22in. Max speed. 58kph Max temp we recorded °C
Terrain:
Huge hills. Road Conditions: Poor, No wind Overnight Accommodation: $. Standard)

Rotten stat's, Huge hills, Despite this it has been an interesting day. We were woke at about 5:45am to the screeching of hundreds of cockatoos. This was followed by light rain soooo we turned over and went back to sleep. The rain stopped about 9 something am. We were on the road about 10:45am. We pulled into a small village called Kangarilla and spoke with the nice lady that owns the general store.



After we left the store we went to the public conveniences just down the road and opposite the school. Here in a paddock was two donkeys. Both were in a terribly emaciated state and both were in desperate need of a “Farrier”. I can only hope they have been “rescued” and were being rehabilitated... but I would not hold my breath.. The directions should be OK if you (the reader) wants to call the RSPCA. Perhaps if enough call something will be done.



We carried on to Meadows and stopped for lunch and a “Cup Cake”... Here we met a lady that suggested we avoid some humongous hills and go via Macclesfield. This is where we are staying tonight. Bev in the general store gave us a free cool drink and organised a stay in a self contained villa. The owner is a “cyclist” and reduced the price considerably for us fellow cyclists... the room is great...






Here in Macclesfield we met a young lad that had built a recumbent as part of both a school project and the “solar vehicle race” We hope to meet his teacher in Strathalbyn tomorrow....

Catchya Tomorrow.

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