Not everything is as you might expect (Day 7)

Day 2 of the big hitch started with some unusual pickups. First (and most unusual) was the woman who had a tiny wee car and two small kids in it. Most unusual.

And then we (two big strapping lads with orange hair) got picked up by a (good-looking too) woman travelling by herself. Admittedly she was not going very far. And she had the worst Australian accent I have ever heard. But still it was odd.

In Woolgoolga we encountered the first hitcher sink of the trip so far – 4 hours were we stuck there. It was so bad that we wrote a song about it. Pretty simple. The words go:

‘Woo-woo-woo-woolgoolga, we hate you’

Sing it with feeling. And the bland Thai place we had dinner said ‘see you soon’ when we walked out the door. Clearly they have cornered the desparate hitchiker segment of the market.

Still, we did better than the surfer dudes who were stuck in the Big W for 6 1/2 hours. Just when things were at their most desparate (we were considering setting up tent in the park nearby, and expecting to be stuck in the big W until some days after our death), we got a lift all the way to Surfers.

I am writing this in my tent in Yuraygir (sp) National Park (where we have paused for the night). We are engaged in the age-old game of trying to rid the tent of mosquitos and sandflies. The mosquitos are winning. And judging from the number we have killed that have had our blood in them, we will carry the scars of battle with us tomorrow.

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A note about chronology

Was it Confucious who said ‘Even the longest journey begins with the first step?’ The little known corollary, of course, is that even the longest holiday begins with the first day.

Alert readers will note that this diary begins on Day 1 but then leaps to Day 6 (which is just the first of many such jumps), and may seek an explanation for this breach of the normal timing conventions.

My holiday did start on Day 1 – April 12 2001. This was a travelling day (but the best professional advice was that I should count this day as the first). The most significant event was saying goodbye to Christi – about which more below.

Days 2-5 were spent in Sydney playing in the NZ team at the Australian Ultimate Frisbee Championships. This was excellent fun – certainly the most enjoyable scratch team that I have ever played with – as well as being very competitive – we ended up fourth (some would argue we were third equal since we never played a 3/4 playoff) after being seeded seventh.

I frequently jump over quite long periods in my record-keeping. This does not mean than nothing was happening – sometimes it means so much was happening that I had no time to write at all (as with the Ultimate), or that I could not be bothered, or that the battery on this computer was running low.

Oh, and there is no necessary relationship between the day that something is recorded on, and the day it actually happened. Your experience may vary dramatically from that advertised. The author’s decision is final, but correspondence will be entered into, and in fact it is highly encouraged.

And note that the 17th of April is actually Day 6, even though 17-12=5. If you don’t believe me count it on your fingers.