"Its a long way to Tipperary...!"

Trip Start Oct 04, 2004
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Trip End Ongoing


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Flag of Australia  ,
Sunday, May 15, 2005

So there we were, back in the drivers seat, heading for what would be the longest drive of our life. To put it in retrospect, you can fit the whole of Europe, and more, into Australia's land mass. It was going to be a long, but interesting drive.

We had picked up the new campervan to a frosty reception. Apparently we were supposed to empty the toilet, something we 'forgot' to do the previous time. Because of this we were given a nice $125 (50) fine! Not a good start. We of course blamed Aaron for it, but neverless the moody bitch charged us! We couldn't get out of Adelaide any quicker!

We spent the first day driving to a small town called Cowell, only about 50 kms to the West of Adelaide, but because of the stretch of water in between, it made the journey more like 500kms. Unfortunately there isn't a ferry that links each side so we had to drive north to Port Augusta, then straight back down again. (This will make more sense if you look at a map of Australia)

Upon arrival, we quickly realised that outback Australia doesn't have much of a nightlife! We were actually lucky enough to have 2 hotels (what they call pubs over here??) to choose from in Cowell! Although, its always a bit daunting when you walk into a pub, everything goes quiet, and everybody turns around and stares at you. So much for outback hospitality! We ended up buying a crate and taking back to the van - well we preferred our own company anyway!

By day 3 we had got used to the campervan and were cruising along nicely. Having covered nearly 1000kms, we were at good pace, and quite enjoying the drive. We were in the campervan 'realm' so to speak. We had got used to all the waving you have to do, getting annoyed when people didn't wave back, and actually gained respect from fellow travellers, all impressed about our van! Usually we would lap up the attention, but the problem was all our fellow travellers were 65+. For the entire 6 days we didn't see anyone our age!

It was on day 3 that we reached a milestone, the Nullabor road sign. The Nullabor is an area in Australia so deselet that not even trees grow in it. For 500 kms we had to drive along with absolutely nothing to look at! Well nothing apart from the many dead kangaroos that littered the road.

Stopping briefly to get a photo of the sign, we noticed, even hundreds of kms away from anything, that even this sign wasn't safe from graffiti. I'm not sure what 'Angie' did, but apparently 'she's a bitch' charming!

We finished the day by crossing the South Australia/West Australia border. Being Australians, they like to fuss, so instead of just letting us drive through, they boarded the van and searched for any illegally stashed fruit and vegetables! Dan being the tight arse that he is, refused to throw away the 3 red peppers we had, so ate them all in about 2 minutes! They did manage to get hold of 2 potatoes and half a clove of garlic though - bastards! Luckily they missed the 2 tonnes of heroin stored in the side panels!
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