Distance today 105km at 19km/hr average
TOTALS: Distance 6159km. Donations $8050.09. Days remaining 52. Deserts: Sturt Stony, Strzelecki, Tirari, Gibson, Great Victorian, Little Sandy Desert, Great Sandy Desert. Tracks: Birdsville Development Road, Birdsville Track, Oodnadatta Track, Red Centre Way, Great Central Road, Goldfields Highway, Wiluna North Road, Marble Bar Road, Great Northern Highway.
Note to new readers: I am travelling with my bike who’s name is Banjo. I often refer to ‘we’ meaning Banjo and I. ‘We’ have an amazing support team of family, friends, sponsors and folk we meet each day. But it’s still up to ‘us’ to face the challenge and tackle each day one peddle at a time.
It’s 7pm on Monday the 26 July 2021
We woke this morning looking out onto the glow of sunrise.
It was a moment to appreciate my caring decision to soak the soul in salt air and sand. I felt every bit charged and ready to tackle ‘come what may’ as we make our way to Halls Creek. There’s a handful of big unknowns coming up with border crossings and closures as our route to Birdsville travels NT, SA and QLD. But it’s still up to ‘us’ to face the challenge and tackle each day one peddle at a time.
The idea of diverting to the west coast came from my Dad. Thank you poppy for the inspiration. You know your daughter well. It was special to share that coast to coast connection. In his honour a bought a latte which is his coffee of choice and gave Mum and Dad a call before heading off.
I apologised for my skinny post the night before. Unfortunately I lost my first post when I tried to save it. Posting each day is a beloved ritual each night. It enables me to express the day. Rob, who I met back in Marble Bar, said it was like a ‘purge.’ I suppose it is in some ways.
Expressing the experience each day is an essential part of me staying in a good place generally and especially during this challenge. It lets me reflect on and appreciate the fullness in each day. This challenge is such an intense adventure. Theres highs and lows in every day and I love the richness. Finding language that captures the experiences embed memories that I treasure. It’s all in the sharing. I spend a couple of hours easy, each night, looking at my photos to recall the day and writing my post. I don’t think too much about it. It’s all felt and shared from a deep place and ‘as it is.’
Carl Rogers talks about the importance of being ‘congruent.’ This means being outwardly consistent with what’s inwardly gong on. This is such an important element in my healthy being. If I think about it too much ‘I’ get lost in the process. Freud calls it ‘free association.’ Expressing the experience is a freedom I can give myself. It lets me see and be seen genuinely. ‘To thyne own self be true’ as Shakespeare said. So I suppose it is a ‘purge’ Rob but with the intention of being human with honesty and integrity.
I’m my best self when I’m present and paying attention to whatever’s happening in the moment. When I’m in a good place I notice all the little things big. For example, I love noticing insects and taking care not to harm them mindlessly as I go about my day. I’m forever blowing insects out of the tent and checking my gear so I don’t take any away from their home. It’s an effort that comes naturally and I love taking this level of care. They’re all signs I’m in a good place. I noticed this morning the insects I crossed paths with and it was a sure sign that my stay at Barn hill Station was well worth the detour. We said our last farewells back at the main road and have a witchery grub a wide birth and we got underway 🤣
Our first break was at a truck stop where we met Colleen and her husband from Bunbury. They gave me a new 1.5 litre bottle of water which was awesome as the other was looking a bit worse for wear. It’s the perfect size bottle for the oversized cage I have on Banjo. I’ve popped an easy flow valve on it so I can drink on the go. Its working a treat especially in the warmer conditions as we head north. Coleen donated $10 before we got going. Thanks so much for your help and generosity fine folk and enjoy your stay with friends in Broome.
Our next stop was by a roadworks sign that warned motorists of the , ‘soft edges’ on the road shoulder. I was drawn to this sign and the different meanings it conjured up.
Roebuck Plains is a wide expanse of floodways for the last 30kms to the junction. It’s the narrowest point between the coastline and the Great Sandy Desert. The soft edges of beech and desert sands meet in this arid stretch. The wind was gusting from the coast and inland creating little sand whirls across the plains. The contrast of heat and coastal air was fascinating along the stretch of soft edges.
Soft edges also evoked the importance of caring habits especially during this challenge. It’s easy to get caught up in drive or survival modes and especially being pushed so out of my comfort zone for the most part of most days. When either of these modes get too inflated, I lose a sense of connection within myself and my environment. Caring habits bring a balance that let’s me stay calm and conscious and in sync with the day. Energy flows from this connected state and I’m energised for a full days ride. Paul Gilbert talks about the balance of survival, drive and caring modes. He refers to it as our human emotional regulatory system. Each mode triggers a range of intentions, focus, emotions, attentions, thoughts and images. It’s a dominos effect that can spiral without being aware and checking in regularly with how I’m going. Caring habits soften my edges so I can open up and connect with my surroundings. Noticing the bugs, flowers and birds when I have wee breaks is one of my favourite go tos to stay in a thumbs up state.
I arrived at Roebucks Station at about 3.30pm. I had heard from Klaus, a cyclist I met during the day, that the roadhouse was fully booked.
I was super keen to stay here as I needed to charge my electronics and wash my gear. At first the manager said ‘no’ as they only had powered sites and they were full. Basically I begged 🤣 She finally reconsidered and let me stay for free in the grassed area where folk can wash their cars. Oh yayaya!!! It’s usually $45 per night so that’s very generous and very appreciated.
I met a beautiful couple staying here, Val and Graham. They were so keen to know more about what we’re doing and are going to make a donation online when they’re in Broome. Val has offered me some frozen soup and bread for dinner tomorrow night. They leave at early o’clock so I need to collect it from them at 630am before they head off. On that note it’s time for dinner and bed so I can get up with the birds in the morning. Night and talk soon. Xxxx