We decided to wake up some long dormant muscles and bike to what the Lonely Planet guide book calls the Paperbark Tea Tree Forest. Apparently it’s what one does in 1770. The folding bicycles were loaded into Cat Nip and we set off through the shallows for the dinghy dock. It’s a balancing act, unfolding two folding bicycles on a bouncing floating dock while scratching ones head, trying to imagine what sort of bizarre Chinese puzzle each latch, lock, and do-hicky is supposed to accomplish. And you’ve got to get it right. We know several cruisers that have been seriously injured by having a folding bicycle re-fold while riding.
Off we Escapees flew like the wind. Well…a little wobbly at first, but it soon came back to us. It’s like…driving a car! Ya know if you can send men to the moon, well, if you used to send men to the moon, surely by now they could conceive of a bicycle seat that didn’t expect that tenderest of body parts to support your entire body weight! Ok, one last complaint. Who goes all the way to Australia and never sees a kangaroo? We do! Here we see a warning sign mocking us as we peddle past on our way to see Paperbark trees.
So, Lonely Planet isn’t so good with maps in terms of scale at least. Some of us needed encouragement after we left Agnes Waters far behind, still on sealed road we seemed to enter the outback all alone. It’s hard to feel more alone than you can feel alone in Australia, mate. We did well, but we were definitely flagging when the Paperbark Tea Tree Forest slowly rolled into view.
On the return ride we took a side trip to a beautiful beach we’d heard about and found a surf school class in progress. There are so many incredible beaches in Australia they don’t have enough people to fill them up.
Still no Kangaroos!