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Blog 144 Ceduna to Cuigena

20th February

Across the road from the camping shop the cafe served coffee which apart from the cafes along the wheat belt and the Foodary at Penong opposite the pub, this was the first sign of metro civilisation since crossing the desert. Australia is so big. It's almost hard to imagine the size even if you are crossing it bicycle or by foot covering every inch. I bought some muesli at the Foodland.

I met people at the Aboriginal hang out at Yalata; Tony and his partner Letishia. He was driving across the country to see his son in Perth but their car had broken down. I continued when later they overtook me, the vehicle having sprung forward with just enough life to make it to Ceduna where I met them again. His daughter was studying physics at Leipzig, his brother Quantum movements at Christchurch. Meanwhile the indigenous peoples walk round like aliens. There's so much about them I don't understand but collectively here in the township they have poorly formed bodies, pot bellies, walk with an abstract gait and speak pidgin. Bare footed, unkempt, hunched backed, small and stooped. They are the black ghosts of Australia.

I punctured. I repaired. The tyre went down again so I pumped it up 4 times and got to Wirrulla and bought dated milk from the general stores. Across the empty street at the small caravan park run by the Wirrulla Progress Association they had washing machines, sinks, a microwave, hot plate, table and sofa. Could be my room for the night but I needed to repair the bike, get food at the shop and carry on. But the battery needed charging so I hung inside the pub across the road. It was typical of the rural bush pub; tv on loud, billiard table, darts, the national flag, horse racing fixtures pinned to the notice board alongside car number plates nailed next to signatures on the wall usually signed on bank notes all next to monochrome photographs of people in flat caps and coy smiles who have long since gone. 

Aussie Bush Hang-Out

I rode away with slices of pizza and a flask of icy cold milk back onto the Eyre Highway, past the small camping ground and the silos across the train track whilst the sun began to set behind me, the sky the colour of a raging fire and as I put my tent up hidden away amongst the eucalypts and thorn bust I was soon asleep away from the sound of the trucks under the bright half moon.

Map of the Day

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