On the road again...

Some notes from the road:
  • When stopping for a break because your arse is saddle sore, make sure the patch of grass where you choose to lie down doesn't have a hidden green ant's nest... or two.
  • Road kill really smells.
  • I loved speeding. Really loved it. There was one nice stretch of road between Armidale and Guyra where I decided to really test the rpms on my bike and achieved over 200km/h in a very short distance.
  • Sitting up on the bike at 200km/h is like opening a parachute. Not a great idea.
  • My bike is sooooo fucking smooth. I really felt like the coyote sitting on top of a rocket chasing the road runner on some sections of the road.
  • Roadhouse breakfasts: sausages, bacon, eggs, 3 pancakes and a coffee all for $10.
  • Remember those ads on TV where Dr Karl advised us all of the warning signs of fatigue? He failed to include singing Bucks Fizz "Making your mind up". I think I was past fatigue and into delirium at that point.
  • Scone, the horse capital of Australia, is pretty.
  • I still love country town chinese restaurants.
  • Queensland roads suck.
  • It's good to be home.


The road trip...

is on.
Me and my beloved bike are heading out together once again. I can't decide where I'm going. Oh, I know where I'll end up, but how I get there is still up in the air. I leave break of dawn to beat the early peak hour traffic out of the city.
I'm leaning towards heading up to Queensland via the inland route. It's a little shorter and getting to my destination is a priority on the way up. Although, the coast road is probably more scenic. Hmmmm, inland it is. I might come back via the coast road.

Please Mother Nature, be kind to me and my journey by keeping the weather cool and dry.

I'll blog when I can, but if I don't, I'll see you on the other side of mid march.


I like to feel like this...

It is my most fave ad on television. It is my most favourite emotion I like to feel
At 51 seconds into this clip sums up how I always desire to feel.

The song is by Morcheeba (Wonders Never Cease). It's a couple of years old, but it still is one of my most fave tunes.


I wonder if it's time to re-write the bible?

Ok, I know that's a bit of an "out-there" statement, but I've been thinking about the English language. Not the bible, but the language it's written in. English is and has evolved. I'm starting to think that our version of the "English language" today is a little different to the language from back when the bible was last translated from it's original texts.

A contemporary version of the bible might just be required in this period of human history. There may be a whole context that we may have missed which, when re-interpreted in today's language, may reveal more loving or logical version of this collection of texts.

See what happens when I'm bored? .. I think about this sort of stuff.

Ummmmm... I have no words...



Rock 'n roll...

The past couple of days have seen some big seas across the heads of the Harbour. This morning I was stopped in my tracks, along with several other passengers heading to the wharf, as we watched the earlier ferry negotiate the rather large waves. It was bobbing up and down like a tiny cork. I was actually a little nervous about boarding my ferry. Here is some footage from another time there were big seas and it will give you an idea of why I felt just a little bit nervous:

We too headed out to the open heads like that and despite my nerves, I still thought it was a mighty fun ride to work. Wheeeee!


I need a hero...

Thanks to Yani for the link... make your own at:
The Hero Factory



Below are a selection of clips from one of my fave music artists, Royksopp. Like or dislike their music these clips are some of the most beautiful I have ever seen and I am truly in awe of the talent behind them. If you have some time, sit back and enjoy.
If you have to pick just a couple to watch, start with "Poor Leno" or "Beautiful Day Without You". Both incredibly beautiful songs and clips.

What Else Is There? from Röyksopp on Vimeo.

Beautiful Day Without You from Röyksopp on Vimeo.

Eple from Röyksopp on Vimeo.

Poor Leno from Röyksopp on Vimeo.

Remind Me from Röyksopp on Vimeo.

Royksopp's new tune is now out, I have not seen a video for it yet. It's called "Happy Up Here" and it is on VERY high rotation on my iPod. 4 times already just this morning!


So anyway... Part III

So, how did you go?
Well, I finished. It took 6 hours and 6 minutes, but all three of us in the team crossed the line together as one. It was a great sense of achievement.
I've just discovered we actually did beat the other team I mentioned in the previous post, so I'm surprised and happy about that.
How was the course?
Difficult. I think that word sums it up the best. The kayak leg was removed from the course due to the lake being closed and it was replaced with extra run and mountain bike legs. The map above outlines the course. The blue sections are the cross country running and the red sections are the mountain biking sections. Each leg of the race had checkpoints that had to be navigated to and in all there were about 40 checkpoints throughout the race.
It was fun. In fact, there were a couple of times where I had to stop because of the laughter. I totally enjoyed racing with Dave and Judo. We worked well together... despite Judo and I coming close to blows at an early stage at one checkpoint.
Could you have done any better?
Of course. We made a couple of navigation errors. But, those errors were only really obvious in hind-sight. I think now that we have a little more experience in this caliber of event we could improve on our effort. It would involve some serious training though. The good thing to hear after the race was that some seasoned tri-athletes said there was no comparison between this race and a triathlon. This was tougher.
So some highlights then?
For sure.
  • For me it felt great to be racing on my mountain bike. I've never been in a mountain bike race before and this was so thrilling. Every corner was important. Your position on the track, who you followed and who followed you all counted. I think I enjoyed this bit the most. I was racing. Woot!
  • The laughter. I enjoyed the day so much.
  • This is a bit of a personal thing for me, but I proved to myself on this race that I could do it. The same as any other adventure-man, and I could be competitive.
  • Crossing the finish line as a team was a very good feeling.
  • The heat in my leg muscles after the race.
  • The hot shower back in the hotel. All the cuts and tiny scratches tingle as the hot water ran over my body. I'm slightly bruised and scratched. Oh, there is nothing more satisfying that that shower after an adventure like this.
I'm satisfied.


So anyway... Part II

I've put the bike together and it goes. Phew.

But why?
This weekend Dave, Judo and I are heading to Canberra to compete as a team in an adventure race.
What's that all about?
It's a modern day triathlon, with a twist.
A twist?
Yep, the three major legs in an adventure race are usually cross-country running, mountain biking and kayaking. Unlike a triathlon where the course is relatively controlled and on designated roads this is a little more 'adventurous'. To spice it up just a little more, you're not told the route until the start. You'll be given a map and you need a compass. You must navigate to each check point or you'll receive a time penalty or possibly disqualified. Plus you need to take first aid kit just in case. It is a race, and yes it's a serious competition. In fact, adventure racing is becoming more and more competitive each year, with some major races being televised (no not this one). Oh and there is often a few surprises along the way.
What like snakes?
Well, maybe, and wombats.. but I'm talking about an extra challenge that may be thrown in. For example part of the course may require you to abseil a section or you may be required to build your team a raft to cross a river...
So you have to be fit?
I guess so - if you want to compete. But it is fun. Well, as fun as you want it to be and that depends on what your idea of fun is I guess.
How long is it?
Well, it's as long as you take to do the course. This one is designed for racing to be completed within 6 hours. If you haven't collected all checkpoints by then you get penalised, so route planning is just as important as physical strength.
I've heard that there are bets being placed on your team?
Ummmmm yes apparently. There is also another team from where Judo works. We'll call them the "Young Guns". People seem to be betting on the experienced team ie: us. Personally I think they're mad, let's face it, I haven't had an ideal training run into this race and Dave hasn't ridden a bike for many years. I'm having a bit of a giggle at those poor suckers who are betting on us beating them. But by crikey we'll be giving it a good shot.
Does your team have a name?
We're the "Rank Outsiders". I believe when we cross the finish line "rank" is one word that will describe us.
Are you excited about it?
Hell yes!


So anyway...

this actually is my mountain bike. It's in pieces and I need to put it together as it's needed for a race this weekend in Canberra.

I've managed to get it mostly together, but am having issues with the rear derailleur. I've no idea why it's not falling into place. *sigh* I'll get there though. I'm writing this because I just needed a time-out from it.
Deep breath.
Right-o, back to it...

Sing along now...

Ok - this would possibly have to be the gayest post ever. But:
Everything I want the world to be
Is now coming true especially for me


I bet you've never...

hmmm... this could be a new feature on my blog. I'll call it "I bet you've never".

and then I'll follow that with a statement or story like...

You know sometimes you just don't want to leave the house to go and grocery shop, so, you make do with what you've got. I don't have a lot in my cupboards or fridge. But I kinda felt like nachos for dinner tonight.

Let's just say I had the ingredients to make them, except for one ingredient: corn chips. But I did have chips... Smith's Salt & Vinegar.

I'll stop now you don't need me to say much more - but let's just say that my food experiment didn't work. Who'd of thought?


I have a new fave artist...

Dmitry Maximov.
It's truly fantastic artwork. I heart it.


I'm loving this right now...

This is my absolute FAVE video right now. At some point this weekend I'm sure I'll be doing these same moves in my fatigues in my lounge room too!


What's going on?...

So I've not been blogging a hell of a lot lately. The main reason is that since moving to Manly at Christmas I've had a rather large change in lifestyle. I've also been fortunate enough to have had lots of visitors to my humble abode who I've enjoyed spending time with.

I've been loving the company over on my turf and it's been good getting to know the suburb with friends and family helping me out along the way. I've discovered some great spots to sit and watch the ocean. So lately, instead of coming home and sitting in my room at my computer, I've been out in the fresh sea air or in the water. Time seems to disappear as my mind wonders at the natural beauty that I'm now surrounded by.

For the past few days I've been floating around the reefs in the aquatic reserve of Cabbage Tree Bay. It's a fascinating place. The marine life here is actually quite stunning. Being an aquatic reserve the area has become a bit of a sanctuary for the local marine life. The number of Mados (pictured) has increased dramatically over the past few years. The area is visited by numerous shark varieties including the Port Jackson, the Spotted Wobbegong Shark and the Dusky Whaler Shark. Numerous varieties of squid, the Gloomy Octopus, Stingaree (fave food for the Dusky Whaler Sharks) and large Blue Gropers are also regularly sighted.

I haven't been ignoring the blogging world, I just haven't sat down and caught up yet.