Between February 2002 and March 2003 I circumnavigated 12,504 miles around the Australian continent on my bicycle, or push bike as they say there. After that I went to New Zealand for three months and met up with a friend and ended up pushing the total mileage to 14,115.7 miles (22717.02 km). I spent 269 days on my bike, 272 days not on my bike, and getting 67 flat tires over those 17 months.
I started and ended my 13 month lap around Australia at Luna Park in St. Kilda/Melbourne.. The distance around Australia (including Tasmania) ended up being about 20,281km (12,600 miles).
One fun thing I did during my trip was to visit six "confluences", which is where a whole-numbered latitude/longitude mark intersects for The Degree Confluence Project.
Had breakfast and then things got a little weird. Ugh, I know exactly how it feels to be an implicated minority. One of the women couldn't find her watch and was looking all over for it. Since all five people in the hostel were older people and I was the only younger, unshaven one....I started feeling like they were suspecting me. It reminded me of in "Stand by Me" how the kid from the bad side of town got blamed for stealing something when in fact it was someone else. Anyway ,the people were already uncomfortable with having to stay in the Backpacker house. Something akin to being worried about parking your BMW in the bad part of town. They left and I soon departed a few minutes later. When I returned my key to the office the guy said "you didn't by chance find a watch did you?" I said that I hadn't. He said "oh, well, no worries". It left an odd feeling with me.
I got to the hostel in Mackay. I saw Steve's motorcycle parked there and chuckled. Turns out he had taken most of the week off and stayed at the hostel. I checked in and got my package that my Dad and Mom sent me. New cleats! Cigar! Headlamp! cool.
Duncan (appears a few days earlier) was doing a photo shoot in Mackay today. I headed out to go in search of a bikeshop. I started planning out the rest of my day, figuring I'd call Duncan in the afternoon, but I got the strange feeling I'd see him before that. Funny, right after I thought that, I rounded a corner and here was Duncan standing on the sidewalk talking on his phone.
Found a bikeshop that also doubled as an Internet cafe. How cool! The owner was really nice and let me borrow a variety of tools to work on my bike. The bike needed a lot of work...so I figured I'd probably take tomorrow off and work on the bike.
Steve, Duncan, and I went to a Thai restaurant for dinner...quite yummy. We went and had dessert afterword, telling funny stories to each other. Duncan had me laughing pretty hard about when he lived with three other bike messengers, and how he has a photo of a bunch of chainrings in the drying rack near the sink.
went in search of a bikeshop and then was going to give Duncan a call about meeting up for Dinner. It was a little funny