Irreverent rants, hungover musings, too much salt...

Thursday, July 05, 2007

(Fragment--consider revising)

The highway stops just before Gympie; everything after is just a single lane each way stretching off into the distance. It was just after Christmas, so around every fifty Ks we passed another speed trap. The rain intermittently pissed down but we found that at 110 km/h you could have the sunroof all the way open yet let in no rain.

The day wore on and we passed through Bundaberg then Rockhampton. By ‘passed through’ I mean, ‘stopped and stuffed around for about an hour’ in each. At Rockhampton, Brennan took over the driving and I cracked a beer. Tim though this was a good idea also, and so we ended up stopping at desolate spots on the side of the road to piss every 100 km or so. With the engine and the lights off, there was only blackness on the sides of the road, the whistling of the wind and the sound of sticks breaking as Yowies prowled around in the dry dark.

Occasionally the wind would pick up the sound of an engine and a light would appear in the distance. The sound would grow until, tires roaring on the bitumen, a 4WD would break cover then go whistling off into the night, the trees on the side of the road vanishing with the light. And then it was black again. No houses, no other roads, no distant lights. Just us, out under the stars and… 'Sweet Jesus! What the fuck was that? Get back in the car guys, let’s go.'

1000 km from Brisbane, after following the red tail lights of a speeding truck through the tree-lined dark we pulled in to a caravan park in Mackay.

We stayed the night in a cabin that appeared to be made out of cardboard covered in wood print plastic coating. The beds were vinyl and the air conditioner made disturbing gurgling/I’m-about-to-explode noises. Somehow with the application of beer, and salami and cheese sandwiches, we managed to fall asleep…ish.

Someone had switched off the noisy air-con last night so we awoke gasping at around seven AM. I tried to throw myself out of bed but regretted it immediately as I left behind half my skin on the vinyl mattress.