When I woke up on day 70, I wasn’t in the greatest of spirits (to say the least) and as I’m packing my gear for the last time I burst into tears. And although trying my utmost best I just could not stop for quite a while. Siri looked at me as if to say pull yourself together big man, you’ve brought us to here now don’t be a baby and finish the job.
And I tried to pull myself together by thinking everything has a start and a finish and finishes aren’t always nice, but then it’s time to plan the next one. I’ve experienced quite a lot, I’ve got fantastic memories, I’ve made new friends and I’ve completed (bar 111km) my goal of travelling on my own round Australia. There’s people close to me that know me well who voiced their surprise that I’ve completed this on my own.
So I composed myself, got on the bike for the last time and the moment I rode it I felt better. There’s something to be said for purpose and momentum. And as I’m riding I’m thinking that some of those tears were for relief that I’m safe but I’m also honest enough to admit that it also was for a bit of self-pity. This fantastic experience is ending and that I have to find a new form of routine. Maybe I became a bit selfish that I didn’t have to consider anyone else and could do whatever I want. I’d like to think that I was true to myself and my values throughout and to a degree found new things about myself good and bad, but time will tell how much and in which ways it changed me. And I realised that I just need to let go and a quote came to mind: “Sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than trying to hang on”. So I powered on for the last time.
Got safely to Hornsby outside Sydney where it all started and handed the bike back almost 20,000 km later, 19789 km to be precise.
The start on the 8th of March:
Safely back on the 17th of May:
I want to say thanks to:
My mate Andy and his staff who made it possible for me to do this blog by initiating this site and supporting me all the way
For Trevor and his team at Ride Australia Rentals for providing me with everything I needed to complete the trip at a very good price and being on the other end of the phone when I needed them. Sometimes on very short notice!
BMW for building such a fantastic bike that gave me so much pleasure as well as Ewan and Charlie for inspiring me to do it (you don’t know me, but I know you!😜).
All my South African friends and family for your calls and your messages of support. It meant the world to me.
All my Australian friends and acquaintances who showered me with their warmth and kindheartedness. And humour, great humour!!
And to the whole of Australia: I think you have a very special country and I can see why so many South Africans can make a home here. I can only sum it up by saying that your country which is one helluva massive place, is very much like South Africa without the problems. You just don’t always know how good you have it.
And last but not the least Sarge who became a great friend. Thanks for everything you did for me, I really appreciate it mate! Without you it wouldn’t have been the same.
Watch this space for the next one!
🍺 with a Coopers Pale Ale (rolled)