Day 365 | Embarking on year 2: no sentimentality here

Esperance Day 67

I’ve been sidelined for 48 hours after my tooth was yanked. No vigorous exercise allowed, the dentist joked, thinking I’m the usual middle aged layabout.

OK, so I’m no longer looking like the lean cycling machine that first arrived here but I took his prescription and instead settled in to read Charlie Tronolone’s CGOAB tale in full. See .

I love Charlie’s unfolding joy to be out on the road, the lucid descriptions of the characters he stumbles across. It’s my experience, as well, of finding that exact campsite at the right time. (Often I’ve been amazed the next morning that I had stumbled on the only decent camping spot for miles.)

His trip turns into a quest for the meaning of life and he makes some sharp points along the way. Like how our obsession with fear obscures the things we should value in life.

I have been often asked about the perceived dangers in my off-main-road travel.

But what about bogans? (That’s rednecks, but usually without guns.) They don’t venture far from the shoot-em-up computer games these days.

Snakes? Very seldom see em.

Caravanners? Well, that’s another story.

Then his self documented brain meltdown as the rain really starts to fall continuously and his descent into madness and paranoia. I hope you’ve recovered mate. It only took him 5 months of solitary travel to reach that stage and I’m way past that.

Eventually smitten with cabin fever, if you can get that living in a tent, I bust out and head off on my favourite ride to the end of the 15km bike path to Twilight Beach. There’s a few sharp rises to get the heart pumping and subsequent rapid squiggly descents. Regularly travelling that stunning oceanside path is good enough reason to hang around Espy.

For once there’s little wind. It’s warm. The sea is calm.

My manic riding of the last year has ceased and instead I’m just enjoying a summer for the first time in decades. My body has (almost) recovered.

My mind has calmed since those hectic inner city Melbourne days of frustration.

Life is great.

As Charlie would say, I’m not wasting those heartbeats.