Friday, April 10, 2009

Trip (Epilogue)

Having spent six days on the road, and covering more than two and a half thousand kilometres, it was time for me to end my roadtrip. The rest of my party were continuing on to hotter and even more remote towns, but I’d always planned to end on a high note and leave them at Broome.

That’s why I went home like this:

Somewhere below was heat and flies and red dust that gets into everything. Up here there was coolness and peace and a rather nice tuna and melon salad. It took two and a half hours to cover the same distance we’d taken six days to travel, and cost considerably less. There's a lesson in that.

To me the great thing about camping is that it allows one to achieve two contradictory ends. First, it offers a connection with the natural world - the dawn chorus of birds, swimming in rock pools, and standing under the blaze of stars unblurred by artifical light. Then, it engenders an appreciation for the modern world - comfortable beds, plentiful water supplies and consistently functioning refrigeration.

Looking out the window of my Boeing 737, I thought of how much I love technology and the glory of the 21st century, but also how much I love my country, for all its sun-blasted deserts, biting ants and aggressively annoying flies. The beauty of modern life is that we can swing between domesticity and camping - the advanced and the primitive - more or less at will. We get the best of both worlds.

So despite not being considered hard core enough for camping, I'd welcome the opportunity to do it again.

Only next time maybe we can go somewhere a tiny bit cooler. Like a blast furnace. In Death Valley.


Blogger be.bart said...

Great road story, you should write traveling books.

8:42 PM  

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