Tuesday, 6 October 2009

The Fabulousness of Friends and the Kindness of Strangers – Part 1.

My run from Canberra to Healesville was uneventful, although the weather was pretty iffy. Forecasts were spouting doom and gloom and snow in the high country, so I avoided doing that lovely ride through Kiandra & Khancoban, choosing instead to go via Batlow, Tumbarumba and Jingellic.

After a wee stop in Walwa, I backtracked a little bit and headed to Granya Gap – the road is magnificent (unless you happen to get caught behind a couple of caravans – grrrrr). And Granya Gap itself – what a lovely road!

I love Victoria rural roads and the way they’re all numbered. It makes finding your way around so much easier. I stopped for fuel and a leg-stretch at Tallangatta, before heading through places with such fabulous names as Tangambalanga, Yackandandah and Wangaratta!
My buddy Katt was waiting in Healesville, where I finally arrived after about 10-11 hours on the road. Oh my bum! Oh my shoulders! Despite having looked closely at the map, I didn't realise just how close to Melbourne Healesville is! Not a bad day's riding on some interesting roads...

On Saturday we took the bikes out for some nice twisty rides to Kinglake and St Andrews.
I love eavesdropping on the conversations of strangers, and had a ball on Saturday. In Kinglake, which was devastated in last summer’s awful bushfires, the conversations went something like:

“So, you rebuilding?”

“Yep, trying to.”
A terrifyingly twisty bit of road later (but geographically not far away), at the St Andrews Market, the conversations were more like this:

‘So yeah, like, it’s something I acknowledged in a past life as an issue, you know. So now I’m thinking about a tantra workshop’.

‘Yeah, tantra workshop’d be great.’ Serious hippie territory – it was fantastic! I’ve never seen so many dreadlocks in one place.

After riding around a lot and being pulled over by a friendly motorbike cop for a licence/rego check, we went down Myers Creek Road (the roads around Healesville are brilliant and the scenery, while a little blackened, it still gorgeous!) and headed to the Beechworth Bakery, which is a popular stopping place for a multitude of leather-clad bikers on their return from a fang on the Black Spur.

Yes, those are hot jam donuts in the bag. No wonder Katt’s grinning!
All the gluten and the massive sugar hit had Katt and I out of control by the time we got back to her place, so we played silly buggers on MSN and knocked off a couple of bottles of plonk.

The plonk explains the seediness of Sunday, and the rain didn’t help, so we went in the car to catch up with Maggles – the third member of the ‘Terrible Trio’. What a lovely girly afternoon – lunch at the Craigieburn Club, and then we played a kick-arse game of Scrabble.

Spent a quiet evening back at Katt’s, packing my bag (boo hiss) for the ride home and watching Casey Stoner kick some Rossi butt in his first ride back after a spell. The trip to Phillip Island’s getting close, and it was great to see Casey back on form!

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