I spent a week in Werrimull before heading to Cairns. Dad was very keen to show me his new toy. The plane is smaller than a hyundai excel and just as flimsy. The propellar is made out of bulsa wood, the windscreen is made from perspex and the panels are plastic. But I wasn't nervous getting in with my Dad. After all, we've all got to die some time. We buzzed around the farming area where I grew up. Acres and acres of flat dry "farming" land. I saw the old Werrimull School, you may be able to spot the school ovals, where I spent much of my childhood avoiding a handful of dog shit getting shoved in my mouth by Nathan Tyack.
I'll put a full video of the flight on http://www.travisyates.com.au when I get settled.I had my car fully loaded and a small 6" x 4" trailer packed full of my junk. After the customary farewells I was on the road to Cairns. I decided to head North rather than go by the coast. The first stop was a roadhouse just outside of Broken Hill (Mad Max territory, where Mel Gibson, the drunken anti-semitic American born actor, made a name for himself.) The toilets had a unique outback naming system. Unfortunately for the owners both sides were locked so I took a pee on the back fence.
The first night I stopped in a small town called Cobar. I could tell I was in the real outback because people said hello to me and I didn't even know them. Also the only guy in town that wasn't a WASP was the guy running the only take away in town. From the paraphenalia around his shop and the fact that he sold kebabs and turkish pide I could tell he was turkish. I slipped in a "tesekkur ederim" which means Thank you. It paid off, I got a family pizza for the price of a large. So I had breakfast and lunch for the next day covered.
Heading into the Queensland outback I found roadtrains up the wazoo. They are trucks with 3 carriages attached. They were taking their toll on the kangaroos with another carcass every 100m in some spots. If I watched programs like CSI I could have worked out how long it takes for a kangaroo to decay and thus work out on average how many die per night. As it was I worked out it was quite a lot. You'd think you would at least drag them off the road if you hit one, but maybe those roadtrains are hard to stop.
But it wasn't just the roadtrains and kangaroos I had to contend with. When I was at the back o bourke (I could tell where I was by the restaurant and take away of the same name) I came across a drover and his horses and cattle. I got a hearty raise of the hat from a guy on a horse. Either he was really friendly, as I've heard these outback types to be, extremely lonely, or he was as gay as David from Big Brother.
Despite these setbacks I was making great time cutting across Australia. Bourke and Wills were a joke. By the third afternoon (last Saturday) I was heading into Townsville. This would leave me a nice comfortable day Sunday to head into Cairns. But I found that Townsville wasn't the sleepy little village it normally is. It was a Saturday, the races had been on, the Variety Club Bash (a celebrity car rally) was in town and to top it all off they had the rodeo on. I tried for about an hour but it soon because apparent that the whole town was booked out. If only I had have known the rodeo was on I wouldn't have been caught in this predicament. So I ended up driving 13 hours that day and got to Mission Beach. I wonder why they call it that?
Sunday I got into Cairns, dropped my trailer at my cousins and booked into to Gilligan's, again. That night I met a diving instructor who used to be a member of the popular comedy experience Puppetry of the Penis. I asked him to do the baby bird but he said he had large testicles and a big scrotum, so was better suited to the sailboat and other such tricks.
Turns out he is friends with Sarah Marie from Big Brother 1. She was appearing that night. For those of you who don't remember her she was a large noisy blonde woman. Well now she's a smaller noisy dark haired woman with fake boobs. Apparently she got them done on TV here in Australia.
I had no idea of the transformation before seeing her as I'd been out of the country. I'd been brought up to speed by Penis guy but wasn't convinced. Since she looked so different. But we all had a chance to meet her and so I said, "I've been out of the country for about 4 years and I haven't seen you since Big Brother 1 and I've got 3 questions for you." She said, "OK", I said, "Are you really Sarah Marie? Weren't you a blonde before? Are those puppies real?" The answers were, "yes", "yes" and "no" in that order.
I'd like to show you a photo of the occassion but I didn't get a photo since the official camerman assured me they'd be on "the" website. I've looked at the Gilligan's, Big Brother and Cairns Post websites but I'm yet to find them.
Monday I looked at a unit and applied for it. There's lot's of people looking so it could be a bit of a mission. I might need to either pay more or move further out of town. I also did my first Japanese lesson in Cairns yesterday. It was over my head so I'm dropping back a class or two.
That's it for now. Hope you're all well.