✉ A trip down memory lane

I woke to a couple of unexpected messages in the group. Unexpected because I’d disabled replies in the group, well, I thought I had. One of those messages was from Anna.

Anna Hegenberg
Like Silas Silas? Jelley? Like old ladies cosmetic bag Silas?
I don’t need a tent - Silas?

Oops, looks like I forgot to actually mute replies to the group before passing out. Have done so now 😂 will reply to you direct Anna 😃 Though I am carrying a tent for this trip, and the old cosmetic bag (which I’d completely forgotten about) never left Australia :D

Anna — originally from Germany and now living in Australia — was cycling from Cairns to Darwin when we met, almost five years ago, I was around four months into my circumnavigation of that great dusty frying pan. That “old ladies cosmetic bag” (visible in the fifth picture below) was a permanent fixture in my front basket for most of my seven month trip, large enough to hold the camera and anything else I wanted to grab without taking my feet off the pedals.

To give a little context to Anna’s comment about a tent, by the time we met — November 17th, 2018, a very windy day — in the rare shelter of a roadside awning, I’d long since gotten rid of my tent. It was the middle of the hot season, even in the middle of the night it rarely fell below 30°c, and the tent took up space on the bike that I needed for water instead. On the rare occasion that it did rain I was more than happy to cycle in it. Through the night on one occasion, the only time I recall being truly afraid of lightning, out there on the dirt there wasn’t anything standing taller than me, but at least it lit the way.

So thank you for your message Anna, a welcome trip down memory lane, thinking about the first of my ‘big trips’ as I embark on a third. In those seven months I cycled well over 20,000 kilometres, further than the walk from here to India, though this will take a little bit longer, with only my feet beneath me and not a magnificent mechanical horse.

Back to the scheduled programming: It’s just gone 5.30am and I’ve been lazing about for an hour with a book. Bit damp beside the canal first thing this morning and possibly small showers due in the afternoon too. I’ll set off soon.

Oh and holy chafe batman. Been piling on the pounds these few months back in England, savings in the old belly bank account, well that’s coming back to bite me now :( Good thing I brought the Sudocrem that mum said I ought to! Or rather, I wish I had. Oh well