Road Trip the First

Trip Start Dec 03, 2004
Trip End Nov 31, 2005

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Flag of Australia  ,
Sunday, April 24, 2005

We checked out of the hostel in Perth early in the morning and I got my first chance at driving the Commodore. The power steering was completely broken so it was hellishly hard to get it to turn corners and within five minutes Ian's navigation had me stranded trying to do an awful three-point turn in a dead end. But five minutes later Ian suggested we try putting some fluid into the power steering thingy (look, I'm not good with technical terms, okay?) and as we took off from the petrol station I was whooping: "It drives! This thing really drives!" And soon we were out of Perth and heading north towards our first stop, Geraldton. I drove for the first half of the day and learned all about the joy of attempting to overtake very slowpokey drivers in caravans or people pulling boats. And the joy of the smell that is made by rotting roadkill.

I drive wondering if the bit roadkill I've just passed is a lion's tail---impossible, I suppose---or a kangaroo's innards. I'm just hoping I won't hit any of my own. Ian passes out in the back seat. Donna tells me about the state flowers of each state, and the state animals. They swap. Ian and I continue our ongoing argument about corporal punishment for children, and whether it's necessary. Donna passes out in the back.

We rock up to the small coastal town of Cervantes for lunch. Cervantes is famous for one thing: being the only town near the Pinnacles, which are famous for being 400 hectares of phallic looking rocks randomly littered in the desert. They're a long way to go out of the way, but it's something you have to tick off as having seen on the way up the coast, so we do. It's a long and winding road to drive up there, hot and sweaty, and I'm feeling nauseous by the time we get there, so that's when we swap over drivers. We drive around the rocks taking silly photos and laughing at the absurdity of what makes a tourist attraction. They really are just some pointy rocks in the sand . . . and yet there's the weird appeal of "what on God's green earth made these things appear here?" We never do find out because we're too lazy to read the long description involving limestone and sand and eons of time that comes with the brochure at the entry.

Finally, later that afternoon, we pull up in Geraldton. It could be a nice place, it's hard to tell; it's grey when we get there and the hostel is big, ramshackle, empty. They've got ping pong, though! We love ping pong. Ian has a go at me for eating chips before dinner and ruining my appetite for whatever great creation he's made this time. Then I almost beat him at pool. It's just like another night in Busso, but somewhere else.
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