Adelaide then Melbourne

Another quick roundup as I’ve not done a lot of touristy stuff, just hung out and travelled.

I ended up going for the redeye flight from Perth to Adelaide. Mel very kindly dropped me off at Perth International Airport. Then realised this wasn’t much use as I was flying domestically and even more kindly drove me the extra ten minutes to the Domestic Airport. Thanks, Mel!

It had been a good, smooth flight with Tiger Airways. We even took off late as there was a tailwind. The flight time was reduced and we were dot on time for landing. Craig (Mudcrab) picked me up at a little after 7am after I landed in Adelaide. He dropped me at his place where I caught up first on email and then on sleep.

Dinner was from the Adelaide Burger bar on O’Connell Street. This is heartily recommended. The chips are slight crispy, but I don’t know what they put in the batter. Whatever it is it tastes delicious. This was followed up by an exceptionally good slice of fruit crumble from the 24 hour bakery over the road.

Our home for the evening was to be the Crown & Anchor (if I remember correctly) where we chewed various amounts of fat and drank far too much and until far too late. Or early. They really don’t do “chucking out time” here.

Thursday was a bit of a blur until Craig came home. Just about recovered, we went to the Grace to see about 5 local bands each doing a short set. The final act, Raw Ether, were playing their last set for several months. The bassist is heading to Germany for some reason I didn’t quite pick up. All three members are 19 years old and annoyingly talented. Great set, and thanks for the free CD!

As the pub closed we relocated back to the Crown & Anchor until they did actually throw us out. A steak and pepper pie and a cake from the bakers on the way home and we crashed out around 5am. No worries. 2½ hours sleep would do us fine for the next day…

Only we had nearer 4½ hours. Craig was late for work and I was late to start hitching to Melbourne. However, Craig got me to the outskirts just before the M1 route begins and set me down around 10:00 for my trek to Victoria.

Almost 45 minutes later I got my first lift off a lady heading just outside of Adelaide to see a relative. A 20 minute drive, but it was a start. Next up – after 30 minutes – were two guys finishing work for the day. They both had beards as good as mine! They dropped me off after around half an hour with instructions on how to get to a really good truck stop if I was struggling.

Maybe 15 minutes later, I was picked up by Geraldine and her two dogs. They kept me company for 4½ hours as we stopped for a beer and headed deep into Victoria. 300km to go and I was picked up by Rick, a truck driver heading back east in his 4×4. He left me around 2 hours’ outside of Melbourne at a roadside café. I’d barely put my bags down when Jason, a young IT guy who works for a large financial company, picked me up and dropped me off right near Shelly’s place. Almost 12 hours to the dot since Craig left me in Adelaide.

However, by this time Shelly had caught a tram into the CBD. Cue a farcicle attempt to locate each other which we finally did. We had a quick meal (it was after 11pm by now) in Red Pepper on Bourke Street. This was amazing – only $5 for a small but filling and very spicy dahl dish with two nan bread. Just about the right amount for me at that moment.

We sat and talked for about an hour until Amy and her sister Emma picked me up to take me to their place where I’m typing this up now. The two girls are Vietnamese and if I remember correctly I got talking to Amy as she’s also a big sponsor of the Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation in Hanoi.

So now to bed. I have a couple of plans for tomorrow (after sleeping very heavily) and then will be meeting up with Shelly, Amy and her boyfriend for a couple of drinks (oh, no…).

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