Between the waves: Conclusion

Friday January 10, 2014

So Friday ends up being my rest day… at home, instead of during the ride in Tumut. I do some laundry and I take three naps. Three naps? I really need to get the thyroid levels checked again….

A lot of our ‘luck’ in life seems to do with timing. You might meet the love of your life just days after purchasing a new home on the other side of the country. You might have a beautiful holiday ‘off-season’ on a nice South Pacific island and then return home just a couple days before the island is flattened by a cyclone.

I feel that I have never had particularly bad nor good timing, nor particularly bad or good luck. Other than the great fortune of being born to a white, middle-class family in the United States, and all of the opportunities that brings, my good times seem to even out with the bad times.

However, I feel very fortunate that the Australian summer served up a week of high temps between 28 and 32C in my region. The weeks before this tour had been quite hot, and the week after the ride was inhumane (temps of 40-44C for 6 days straight, and above 35C for 4 days on either side of those 6). It was a real lift to my spirit to get out for a week on the bike. I’d been feeling like I’d been losing momentum since returning to Australia, and this gave me a great boost.

On this trip, I tried to plan it so that I could be in a town at the end of the day where I could refill water, get a shower and, hopefully, find a place to get ice or some refrigeration for my thyroid medication which requires a certain temperature range. However, if I were to do this ride at a time of year with lower temperatures, I would try more dirt roads and not worry about being in a town each night.

In the areas I rode through, it would have been easy to find a place to free camp for the night – even most ‘localities’ will have an abandoned tennis court or a public road reserve or stock reserve available. Most little villages or towns will have a recreation ground, showground, park or church where you can pitch. Most Aussies out in these parts are very tolerant (many are friendly) and very much have a live-and-let-live approach to things, so no one is likely to care if you camp somewhere for the night. Maybe I’ll give that a try in March if I can sneak in another tour then.

The ride reiterated that I love the road, even the rough, chipseal ones. I’m considering bringing forward my 2015 Montana tour to this year, before the Aussie dollar drops even further. So stay tuned….

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