Fuck It. Life Is A Risk.

Location: Warrnambool, Australia  Ride: here  Pics: here

Man, my brain is full today. I just kept filling it up and it just kept not overflowing. I realized a couple of days ago, while somewhat stagnant in Adelaide, that I was getting bored. While seemingly impossible, it apparently is not. And that got me thinking as to why, and that brought me to this: I should be doing and seeing more. Just riding my bike, while my greatest joy and my primary reason for being here, is not enough to feel emotionally replete.

The Koala's Are Cops

Location: Adelaide, SA  Rides: here  

Australia is fucking expensive. In your face expensive. Rodeo-drive-we-don't-give-a-fuck-what-you-think expensive. You require examples, and I have them, about a few things. Then we can get onto some more meaty stuff about what I have been doing with myself outside of emptying my bank account.

Phoning It In From Adelaide

Location: Adelaide, Australia     Ride: here   Pics: here

Still struggling with too much to do and too much to say and not enough time to get it all down in a nice, tight format for delivery. So, this is just a straight up "what I have been up to" update, because I know you are dying to know. 

Melting in Mildura


Location: Mildura, Australia  Ride: here

It's only 8:15PM but my eyes are struggling. Today was scorchingly hot, and it drained me. I'm watching the black doves on the balcony next to me, who are watching the sunset and cleaning themselves. I drove 6 hours yesterday from Wagga to here. I went a little too far into the bush in my shorts and sneakers and thought I may have been bitten by something.

I spent the next half hour in the car wondering if my heart thumping was due some spider venom making it's way to my core, or from the five coffees I had. I think the coffee trade is behind Australia's deep fascination with drowsy driving. Then there are the camera's every 100K or so, to take a picture of you, so that someone somewhere can determine if you are too sleepy to be driving. I shit you not.

Not An Hour Wasted

Location: Sydney AUS     Ride: here   Pics: here

Holy shit I had a productive day. I dont know that I have had such a productive day in many years. I was up at 6:30 AM for no reason other than my body was confused at being thrust 21 hours into the future. Maybe since I missed a whole day I felt extra inclined to do more in this one. 

First thing I did was unpack the bike.

Please Send Suncreen

Location: Honolulu, HI   Ride: here  Pics: here
Obviously, I eat out a lot, and I notice shit. Like people not talking to each other. People on their phones consistently despite the beautiful surroundings. Personally, I do spend a lot of time online but it's mostly spent keeping up this site, making videos, planning, looking for places to stay and for cool places to visit.

These people are on vacation and they are still staring at their phones. I don't get it man. They should take everyone's phone away at the airport.

Iwanabikinaui

Pictures: here.   Ride: here. 

Flying into Honolulu in a window seat will make you think of Pearl Harbor. If you don't, then you are heartless or not American, only the latter is excusable. Once you land, and you're not in a movie or on an Apple Vacation, you will not get lei'd. You might get screwed though, like I was, and end up one bike-in-a-box short of complete.

My bike was in Phoenix, doing who knows what. She showed up the next morning though, delivered to my hotel room door, and I didn't ask any questions. I was just glad to have her back. I reassembled her and was so excited in doing so that I over-cranked a bolt in the stem and snapped it.

Why Travel: Reason #45


Location: West Chester, PA
Only one more day until three months with the bike in Hawaii, Australia and New Zealand. I could leave this moment. But since I can't, I dug up the box of stuff from my last trip to Australia 21 years ago, and I found a bus ticket, a ticket for seat F9 at the Sydney Opera House for this guy on the 17th of November, my journal, and also $2.40 in australian coins. So, I am pretty much set in the money arena because, as you well know, $2.40 in 1991 money is worth a whole hell of a lot more now.

In 1991, at age 19, I packed a backpack and spent 10 months in Australia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Japan. Even my parents really don't remember how that happened, except for the fact that I was not happy in college. How that jumped to a one-way ticket to Australia with a couple hundred bucks escapes us all, but I have to think they might have been trying to kill me.

It was a fantastic time, as my journal recounts. It's full of scribble and poems and drawings and names with numbers attached. Some of them I can remember, but most are lost on me. Some of it is just words, like "Central Java" or times, like "2:54AM" and a date. Nothing at all to clarify why I wrote them down at all, just a timestamp on a page.

There are pages of short stories that begin with dramatic first lines like this: " Poochai could cry on demand." It's full of the people I met, the price I paid for a rented motorcycle, the three nights I spent sleeping on a park bench in Shepparton, Australia, and the girls that stole my brain and my heart if just for a while. But mostly it's chock filled with pining for my high-school sweetheart. Jesus, I was in love.

Old passport, ID, coins, and a ticket to a show. 
It's also full of some pretty good shit for a 19 year old on his own in a foreign country with no money and not knowing anyone. Specifically; it lacks all sense of fear. Everything is fun. Everything is great and beautiful and fantastic and it all smells just like a ripe rose.

When I showed up in Sydney, I got a bus and I found myself a hostel. I sold potpourri door to door for a spell. Then I amped it up and joined a traveling band of misfits who sold mass-produced art door-to-door. I would tell my victims we were a group of young American artists on tour in Australia and that it was all of our own art. I sold a ton.

We would stay in caravan parks at night and drink beer and tell stories of our day. The husband who showed up drunk and pulled a gun, the little girl who emptied her piggy bank in front of me because she wanted the painting of the two swans (which I gave to her for free.)

There were six of us, David (aussie) who was right all of the time, his girlfriend Veronique (French) who I felt I was meeting for the first time every time I spoke to her, Francois (french) who swore by matches and categorically dismissed any other method for lighting a cigarette, Brad (aussie) who wore sunglasses all of the time and would not miss a chance to tell you about his parakeet named Jesus, and then me and then Inga (german), who I fell in love with very quickly. Inga and I had the most beautiful one month together you could ever imagine.

I pick up these journals and I don't ever have to wonder why I travel.


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