We had another farewell with Kevin and Shar, this time with less hilarity from dad getting into his leathers. He has become quite good at it now, but the squeaking will still drive you nuts.
With the trailer fixed and reattached, Dad and I left the gong, via another scenic route, and started the long journey home. The look in our faces was one of weariness and exhaustion, but not at the same time, sometimes respectively, and home was now the shining beacon of rest.
Nothing and no one was left to be seen, so Dad and I took the Hume highway, turned off at Wagga Wagga, and stopped at Narrandera for the night. They were really friendly people at the motel next to the Caravan Park. The owner was a bike nut as well and it took a long time for Dad to stop talking to him. Apparently Mum and Dad stayed here once before on a trip to SA.
For dinner, dad and I crossed the road to the roadhouse dinner across the road. After a couple of weeks, I was pretty sick of eating at service stations but this one came with a little bit of gold. They had a small stand with books for purchase and at the front was an anthology of Spike Milligan poetry called “Knees, Fleas, and Elephants”. My reaction could only be expressed in emoticon...
What the hell was a service station in the middle of nowhere selling Spike Milligan books? Doing awesomely that’s what! They had four copies of the book there, so they are expecting to shift product. A good chuckle at under $5, my jaw dropped pretty rapidly, but I still purchased my copy before my mouth hit the ground, but only just. The service station clerk looked at me weird, but I get that a lot.
After a sleep, dad and I were back on the road again, we headed to Hay, then Balranald, but instead of going through Mildura dad and I turned off and Manangatang (real name) and then back through Ouyen (not convinced of real name) following the Mallee (B12) highway. I had never come through this way before and you enter South Australia through Pinnaroo. It is shorter than going through Mildura and the Riverland by almost 80 kilometres if you are heading to Adelaide.
The service station at Pinnaroo is very bike friendly as well, run by another bike nut. Dad can find them.
The ride to Adelaide is uneventful. We get a sprinkling of rain, but we are dry within seconds. We arrive at my house and I convince Dad to stay for a bit and travel to Whyalla tomorrow. He woke up early the next morning and finished the last leg.
5000 kilometres, two weeks, umpteen blog entries later the adventure has come to an end. It is sad to think how quickly is disappeared. It is sadder to think I have to go back to working for a living. The only thing not sad is my bum.
But what does it know.
Thank you to all who played a part in my father and my adventure, whether you fed us, washed us, picked us off the ground, put up with our fatigued tempers, fixed our trailer, or hurled abuse from the side, you will be a permanent fixture in the memories of our time.
Make sure you all look after your selves, and hopefully dad, I, or both will see you on the next grand trip.