I picked this tire up a couple of weeks ago after tearing my front tire open (again) on a dirt descend. Never heard of the brand but had a nice fat Made in China on the side. I liked the profile but the rubber looked questionable. It lasted a lot longer than I expected but over the last couple of days I notice the rubber was wearing quickly. Thought it would still get me home but today it start opening in two spots! I was just about to pull off in Goulburn to invesgtigate the noise when the tube blew. Derp. New tires, ready to roll. Two more days to Sydney.
The last couple of weeks have been a bit on the nitty gritty side. Basically since leaving Port Augusta I’ve been riding on the highway. I decided on Sunday I would head east rather than back up north to Adelaide. I wanted to camp at the Gampians but the thought of going further from Sydney wasn’t a very desirable one. After I picked up a map of Victoria I discover huge amount of parklands to the east. East it was then. I’m in Orbost, Vic now and about to start heading north. Sadly the nice weather didn’t hold out and I will be seeing rain in the next couple of days. Maybe even snow at the top of the climb. Over the next couple of days I’m going to ride a meager 170km, riding short days then camping and hopefully some hiking. Next major stop is Camberra sometime next week.
Three years after having my first tourny in Australia I have finally made it back to Melbournes lovely Flagstaff Gardens for another fantastic weekend of polo. Brook flew down from Sydney and I arrived Thursday morning after taking the train from Horsham (more on on why I was on the train later). I ran some errands Thursday & Friday. Stopping by Jetnikoff Bicycle co. to chat with William about building me up a loaner polo bike. We slapped it together Friday evening before I headed off with Rob Moss and enjoyed some of his fine homebrew while he got stuff together for the tourny. Then off to a party for one of the local players moving to Tokyo. Upon arrive at the party we immediately began heckling Benee to play with us and before even saying yes the smile on his face said it for him. Morgan, Brook & Benee: The Dog Particle.
We started Saturday morning off like being shot out of a still drunk particle accelerator. Despite all my efforts to be as hung over as possible it seemed nothing could upset the Particle. 7 games, 7 wins. The Dogaverse seemed unstoppable.
Sunday started off oddly. There was something missing…. maybe that rhythmic pounding in my head that is usually the cadence at which I stumble through a tournament. Had gotten a good nights sleep done me in? Naaaahh, we did just fine.
First game was against The Narwhals. Poor DFL team, but they had good spirits about it.
Next up was Polo Beer. Bart still being a bit sore that we got Benee. Took them down as if The Dog Particle did not even know what physics was.
Then Melbourne WAnchor (I kid, I kid). We decided to get hella(!) pumped for this match. Threw on some Gamma Ray right before the start and I was off. Sadly my break could not seem to keep up with me. We where all over the place and got slapped down for it. 5-1 Anchor I think. Ouch.
This dropped us into the “Not Winners” bracket and we played Seagull Archy? They explained what it meant many times but I don’t think anyone got it. It just confirmed for me lefties have no souls (love ya!) and… I aint afraid of no lefty bullshit.
This is the part were we where in the final. The Dog Particle v. Melbourne Anchor. This was probably my favorite game of the tourny even though we lost. 3-5 but it was a fight. An enjoyable one at that. Probably should have heckled more. meh.
Great tournament once again. Thanks to Rob, Sam, Robbie, Belle and everyone else who helped out. Thanks to Benee for joining the Dogaverse, cannot wait for WWIII in June.
My original intention of writing daily on the phone/touchpad and post when I had WiFi access. This didn’t work out as I had intended. Once in my tent and fed the last thing I wanted to do was hold my phone up and write about the day. Also WiFi barely exists out here. I’m at a public library right now.
Instead I’ve been taking notes each day about the day before and will compose those into a proper log. For now I’m going to breifly write about each day so far.
Day 1. Perth to ?
Left Perth around 2pm. It was hot. Traffic sucked. Climbing. Once I hit the turn off for Great Southern Highway at The Lakes it was quite nice riding. I was out of the climb, there was more shade less traffic and generally nicer. Pulled off early, around 530 and made camp. All was well.
Day 2 ? to York to Quariding
2 front flats early in the day. Tear in the sidewall. Slow going to York but cruised after that. Stayed in Quariding but had a shit nights sleep. A party of Irish pavers broke out outside my window and I havne’t a clue what time.
Day 3 Quariding to Somewhere east of Merredin
No notes. Must have been a good day
Day 4 14km east of Merredin to east of Yellowdine
In an effort to make a big bush I decided after eating in Southern Cross I could make it past Yellowdine at the least. I grabbed 2 grilled cheese there so I could ride to the last light and setup camp without worrying about the stove a cooking. Twilight lasts quite a long some and I’ve still not been able to time setting up camp perfectly. Thats okay, just means I can read while I eat.
Day 5 East of Yellowdine to Coolgardie
Big day with nothing in between. Decided I would opt out of my only water station to see what I was going through. It was hot today too. 30C. I used to almost all my water. Will add 3L before hitting the Nullabor.
Day 6 Coolgardie NOT to Norseman
Suck fest. Don’t want to talk about it.
Day 7 Suckfest to Norseman
Still pissed from yesterday, casual ride, stopped a lot and took pictures. There where a lot of really big really dry lakes. Made it to Norseman a little after 11 and promply found the pub. After this going to stock up and get a room there. Going to try to leave early tomorrow for a big push.
After the courts went up yesterday I was a little worry about the weather. It was HOT. And not in the good way. Regardless had an enjoyable day of pickup with beers and shit talk mixed in.
Today started off much nicer. Cooler tempatures and a little cloud cover. I really was not sure how out day was going to go. Yesterday we got one team game in and I was a little worried. I’d never played with Tom before and he is a relatively new player. A couple games into the day my worries where absolved. While he does make some newbie mistakes it is clear he has a great sense of court presents. He was consistently in the right spot, talked well and even has a decent shot on him which earned him a hat-trick in one match. Glad to have him as a team mate going forward.
DOG SOCCER! Game Report
Godzilla Symphony 3 – 1
Basically we had more ball control, more shots and more passes. They had the goal stacked almost the entire game and scored on breaks. Fog horrrn.
GC Studs 0 – 5
Pretty new team, hilarious, good fun, never had a chance.
The UnaPOLOgetics 1 – 5
Nothing note worthy I guess. Cannot remember this match.
Bolo Pears 2 – 4
Andy fucked my wheel and lefties aren’t that hard to play against. We had Ray and Vive blocked out a good amount of the time and seems like they couldn’t get their passes off. Lefties still aren’t that hard to play against, but Ray and Vive weren’t on this team.
Where The Wild Swings Are 2 – 4
Ted carried the team and gased out. He is a really good new player with tons of potential, look forward to seeing him play in the future. I also love this team name.
0-3 Samuri Polo Cats
Rob didn’t take it well. I enjoyed playing against Big Sam, his style is really funny because he is so big but doesn’t play a physical game.
Happy Endings 4 – 2 (not 100% sure)
I hit Colin once a bit too hard. I hadn’t seen him in my way then once I noticed someone I thought it was Andrew. Felt a bit bad so turned the ball over.
In the end 6 wins for 7 matches! Seeded 4th over all. We went out to an overpriced pub that night and got a couple more beers in. It was nice just hanging out and talking smack. Most of the folks from our hours decided to call it some what early and headed home. I stacked it being a jackass and landed on my hip. By the time we arrive home I was already limping. Always happens this way, don’t get hurt the entire day on the court and stack drunk on the way home. That’s Dog Soccer for ya.
After an obscenely expensive and booring flight we arrived in Perth last night. I had 3 minutes to spare when I board, plenty of time. About 10 minutes after we arrived Wal and Mattie came to pick us up. Wal was driving a pretty amazing old troop transport that functioned as a bike transport at the time. We got to Wals house and had a couple rounds of beer followed by a couple more and it was off to bed.
This morning we where great by great hospitality from Wal and Kristy in the form of espresso drinks and bananna chocolate chip muffins. We are now lounging around, enjoying the sun and waiting to head to the courts. I’m looking forward to getting the courts up, getting some beers in, playing pickup and catching up with friends.
“He said we out nerded Rivendell“. This is the quote of the trip thus far. Coming from Nick at Cheeky Transport in Sydneys Newtown. This comment was after to my amazement they had an obscure touring tool that Rivendell didn’t. It was the Stein Mini Cassette Lock. I’d only found out about this tool a day before leaving CA so ordering was out of the question. If anyone would have it in the Bay Area it would be Rivendell. While they did have some Stein tools they did not have this one. So I was quite excited when I happened to notice Cheeky down a side street as it had been recommended I check it out the night before. My mission at the moment was gauze but I ended up buying this and looking into a handlebar bag.
First glimpse of the shop was a huge SURLY sticker on the door, my kind of people. Couple of nice builds right up from, a Karate Monkey with a Cheeky Monkey sticker on it. A plain blue rando bike with lugs very reminiscent of Rivendells (they where, it wasn’t). Stack of Ortlieb panniers, some nice canvas bags, a large bearded gentleman wrenching at a stand.
I ended up getting the Ortlieb handlebar and for being in Australia the price was really good. Seems they really support the commuter and touring crowd. This is a very nice shop and I will be my local shop from here out. Seems to be everyones local and easy to see why.
Ticketing was listed as opening at 2:00pm, I was done at 2:08, first cocktail within 15 minutes of that. The touring bike was over maximum weight but since it was a second checked item and declared as a bike I didn’t get charged for the other being overweight (not over max). So after a couple minutes moving 4kg from one to the other I was good to go. Hopefully my Sydney to Perth flight will be as easy. Same boxes, same weight different airline. Back to the bloody mary.