Day 29 - Brisbane, Queensland to Evans Head, New South Wales - 273kms
With over six months passing from the last leg of the trip my packing was a bit rusty and I was still running around the house while Alicia was in the car waiting to drive me to the airport. I just barely found the keys to the storage unit as I was walking out the door which saved me a trip to the hardware store and also the pain of hauling a set of bolt cutters on the bike.
My little brother Mike flew out from Colorado to join me on this section and on our overnight flight from Perth to Brisbane we were upgraded to business class seats. It was his first time in business class and he fell asleep immediately. When I asked him what he thought he said the leg room was ok but the stewardesses woke him up way to many times to ask him if he needed anything and to offer him food and drink. I made up for him by eating and drinking everything that was offered to store up energy for our upcoming adventure.
Our flight landed at 5:25AM and our 5 minute cab ride to the storage unit cost us $34.80. I made a comment about being raped by the taxi company and our driver misinterpreted and thought I called him a rapist. He was not happy about that and we got our own bags out of the trunk before he sped away. Karma immediately caught up with me when I realised that I had the key to open my storage unit but not the four digit code to open the gate to get in the building. By then it was 6:00AM, still dark and ~5C outside. I went through all my bags, checked both my email accounts, woke my fiancé up back in Perth at 4AM her time and then finally found it by remotely logging on to my work computer from my I-Pad. With karma averted we went about the usually frantic packing/repairing/testing of the bikes before getting on our way.
With the rest of this tripped planned through the mountains of New South Wales and Victoria we spent the first day just cruising down the coastline checking out beach towns. Our first stop was Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast. The beach seemed to go on forever and all was normal until a lady in high heels, a metallic bead curtain top and a gold thong crossed the street in front of me at a stoplight. I'm not sure if she was a stripper, model, girl that holds the round # sign up at boxing matches or an exhibitionist just out for the thrill. The fact that it was 10:45AM added to the mystery and I'm sure some of you will comment your analysis.
For lunch we rode into Byron Bay and were greeted by a large sign on the edge of town that said the community was 98% gas free. I couldn't see any wind turbines, solar panels, nuclear or hydro power plants so I assume the breakdown is as follows; 2% Natural Gas & 98% Coal, Fuel Oil and good old fashion log burning stoves and heaters. Seems like a strange thing to brag about but they had a microbrewery and my attention was soon elsewhere. Byron Bay looked like a very fun town to spend a few nights in but not at all conducive to the early start we had planned.
We found a beach town called Evans Head on the map and decided to stay there for the night solely due to my fiancé's last name being Evans. I was hoping to come up with a good joke but most of the ones so far wouldn't even make the Popsicle stick cut.
"Chris: Did you dream of me last night?"
"Chris: Because I was in your head all night!"
"Alicia: You are an idiot."
Evans Head turned out to be a good choice with our swags set up right on a river leading out to the ocean and a pub with live music a stones throw away. We set up out swags and Mike did well considering it was his first time ever and I gave him no advice. (4:37 - My set up time) We walked down the river and watched a group of surfers until it was too dark to see them and then saw giant bats start flying through the dimly lit sky. They look like something out of a movie but the only thing that drips from their fangs is the juice from the fruit they eat.
With waves crashing on one side of me a music playing on the other I quickly fell asleep in my comfy swag.