Monday, February 25, 2008

Run for the Border - Part two.

Feb 14th

The mishap had really begun in Norseman when we forgot to pick up our Personal Locator Beacon (a safety device that would send out a distress signal in the event of an emergency; a bit of an overkill on a road with steady traffic and plenty of truckers with UHF radios, however, I rather err on the side of caution). The Norseman Post Office was closed for the weekend, and we left on Sunday. That Monday in Balladonia, we called Norseman, and with a quick "no worries love", the lovely post attendant sent it on to what she described as the post office in Eucla.
Eucla is the largest settlement on the Eyre Highway, and it made sense that if they had a police station, they would probably have a post office, and if they had one, it would probably be open 9 to 5 Monday through Friday. These were the facts on hand as we arrived in Madura on Thursday.

What it came down to was the realization that if we showed up in Eucla two days from now, it would again be on a Saturday, and we would miss the mail. Anthony came to this conclusion while speaking with his mum. He relayed the situation to me and followed it up with the most logical option – forgo sleep, leave at 7 p.m. when the wind and heat died down, and ride through the night to Eucla 180 km away, on top of the 60 we had done that morning.

When the opportunity for a challenge comes around, especially one of this nature, it’s really hard for me to say "no." What it came down to was that it would be a hassle to get that PLB if we did not pick it up the second chance we got, and 180 km with no sleep was really a small price to pay. On top of that, the idea of riding in the wind and heat the next day made the no sleep option a lot more appealing.

Anthony smiled the question, "you up for it, mate?"

I grinned, nodded in acceptance, and we spent the next hour and a half preparing for our run for the WA/SA border under the shaking heads of the other travelers with beers in hand who seemed somewhat dumbfounded by our life choices.

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