Woke up in my little cosy tent (I finally managed to sleep straight through till 5.30 am after using anti curlew devices called earplugs as well as a little nightcap) not knowing what to do because heard rumours of a cyclone coming south. Wanted to sleep in the rainforest north of Port Douglas at Cape Tribulation. Apparently you wake up to the most beautiful sound of birds ever (no Curlews!!). After advice from Geoff and his wife at 6am, friendliest cleaners ever, decided to visit Mossman Gorge just north and then turn south to outrun the cyclone. Now this sounds like an adventure! Sad because really wanted to go over to the west coast of the peninsula at a place called Kuramba. Dr Kate told me about the beauty of the sunset there overlooking the ocean and I envisaged sitting at a little bar on the sea. Maybe sometime in the future… but now had weather to deal with. Visited the beautiful rainforest. Started off dry and then you hear the rain but the canopy above catches it and delay the inevitable deposit that eventually gets you wet. But I don’t mind wet because it’s a warm wet… and you dry out eventually.
She had a little kangaroo, but took a liking to Siri. Easily done!
Siri wanted her photo taken as she felt at home in the rainforest. She’s sich a wee poser 🤗
After this beautiful walk of about 3km (and how I need the exercise!), I headed south for the first time after about 3300km. The fastest way would’ve been to head back down the coast to Townsville where I came from, but true adventurers don’t backtrack, so I took the most beautiful winding road up to the tablelands towards Mareeba. It used to be a goat track, so it felt like 100 30km/h turns till we finally reached the top. Stairway to Heaven played in my head.
Headed to Atherton where locals again warned me about the cyclone. Came across Ravenshoe at two and asked locals at the highest bar In Queensland where to head.
I got 5 different opinions from guys who’s been sitting there judged by their condition since the previous night. None the wiser treated myself to a beautiful chicken salad (no carbs!) and realised haven’t eaten anything all day. Fear of cyclone must have delayed my hunger. Wolved it down. If you want to know where to go, ask a Sheila in a mud-covered 4×4. Fuelled up at Mount Garnet.
Local cop pulled in and asked his advice. Said I have to head to Oasis and can make it before sunset. No use going west because a river has overflown and the road is blocked. You don’t want to be on this road after that. Only roos and cattle then.
When moving my bike away from the pumps I heard “Hi, hoe gaan dit!! Wat maak n Boer hier?! Hannes from Hotazel in South Africa spotted my JA/NEE sticker. He is a mining engineer from South Africa who’s doing the design and implementation of a tin mine 14km away. He’s been living in Mexico with his beautiful Mexican wife, has been all over the world setting up mines, has been kidnapped and kept for 9 days by Boko Harram in Nigeria, when ransom money handed over escaped under gunfire, his gorgeous daughter is a cheerleader for the Bulls (wrong team!) and now finishing her studies. I said my father in laws dad had the general dealer in De Ben and he said you wont believe it, but his dad had it too. What a coincidence!! He offered me a place to stay and was clearly ready for a braai, but I had cyclone fever and had to get moving. Said goodbye to a newfound friend made in 15 min. 🤗
Thanks to the cop’s directions and meeting Hannes, I now had a clear purpose on where to go and was full of the joys of life. What a beautiful ride I had. The Bruce Highway stretches south through some beautiful lush cattle country. Saw: first anthills (they’re round in shape!), 6 falcons feeding together in the road, a kangaroo crossing road in distance, thought another but was magnificent huge wedged tail eagle, and cattle in the road.
Reached Oasis, a fuell stop with camping in the middle of nowhere but food and the smallest bar in Oz!! Camped 100 yards away and had access to a shed where I tried to dry my sour smelling wet stuff. Erected the tent in 7 min. Siri watched it all with great admiration and said that’s the fastest erection she’s ever seen. I guess koalas are a bit slow-moving if that impressed her.
Was given the choice of a room for $60 or camping for $10.
Pauline, the lovely owner in the smallest bar in Australia. She’s starting with her back to the wall’
Reminded me a bit of Betta in Namibia
Had a great steak and a good chat with a couple who was having dinner with their two young daughters. They still had to do 3 hours to Townsville. They work for a big conglomerate who owns half a million acres with 15000 cattle 40 km away. She homeschools the kids until they have to go to high school. Now I truly felt remote with no reception. What does the internet & a band have in common? They both become useless when they run out of gigs! No use having gigs if you can’t use them…
So had the most laidback Friday night ever and retired to my tent. Siri sang me to sleep at 8.30 and woke up at 2.45 fully refreshed. A Meatloaf phrase All revved up with no place to go! sprang to mind. So I sat on my chair and for the next few hours until sunrise I wrote this blog. A cockerel started to crow at 5am (luckily more than 3 times😜) and I felt great about life🤗.