Arrived in the thriving metropolis of Adelaide and unloaded the car off of the Indian Pacific.   Aside from avoiding crazed Adelaide Taxi drivers, found driving in Adelaide much saner than last time being in my own car and knowing the place much better than I thought I would.

Spent the day with an Matthew Sorrell helping construct a trial piece (pulley box) of the simulator that is being installed at St Peter’s.

Have landed at R and A’s place as a place to crash.  They stayed with me in 2011 during Perth IV and were excellent houseguests.  Hopefully can return the favour.

Spent the evening at the ringing practice at St Peter’s.   Matthew showed me the progress to date on the simulator and got me to ring the tenor (Great Frederick) (it weighs more than my car!) during the start of practice.  Some rounds were rung, but struggled a bit with getting into the rythym on

Tommorow involves a lot of driving, but need to get my organisation together and start attacking my todo list (of things that need to be done before IV)

Day Two.  Still no signs of civilisation east of Perth.   This should change tomorrow by some accounts.

Looking out the window as we cross the Nullarbor Plain is quite mesmerising and strangely relaxing.  Watching fixed objects on the horizon dance around as the train moves is a strange optical illusion.

# of camels spotted: 3

Have suprisingly had more connectivity to the outside world than I would otherwise expect with Telstra NextG signals picked up at the Forrest siding and at Cook.  (Coverage in more places!)

Did my telecommunications geek thing and found the Nextgen fibre that crosses the Nullabor follwing the route of the train line.  I have enormous respect to the indviduals that cross similar paths almost a century ago to run telegraph and train lines.

Currently somewhere in South Australia (Tarcoola?) looking out of the window at the scrub.  I’ve enjoyed travelling on the Indian Pacific so far, less frantic than flying and with comfier seats.  I would recommend doing the journey.

73s, Mark

My big trip has begun.  I’m currently writing this sitting aboard the Indian Pacific train in Carriage R.  (There be pirates here, rrrrr). The train has about half an hour ago passed through Northam and is wending its way across the continent to Kalgoorlie and to my final destination of Adelaide.

The big trip consists of voyages through Adelaide, Melbourne (including the end of the world at the Melbourne Intervarsity Choral Festival), Canberra, Sydney, Brisbane, Vancouver, San Franscisco, Chicago, Grand Rapids, Boston, New York, London, Amsterdam, Oslo, Hong Kong and back to Brisbane.

Along the way I hope to catch up with a lot of old friends (and their couches!), hopefully make some new ones and generally have great, relaxing time.

About two years ago, June 2010, I knew my long service leave would become due about six months after Perth IV (which we were just starting to busily organise).

A year ago, Perth IV occured, lots of singing, fun and general exhaustion from being an organiser.  Some good things came out of the IV and have helped make the decision to head off on this adventure.

About six months ago, had to move house as the owner wanted to renovate, er, demolish it.   This was a helpful nudge in giving me some inertia to tackle the mountain of junk that inhabited my abode.   At that point, I’d complete the major milestones in a work project (and finished that off a few months ago).

At this point, in earnest, I started actually putting the plans together for the big trip.   Short lease on the new place, avoiding new commitments at work and with various committees, selecting destinations, starting the second weed and pack for storage.

The past few weeks have been that culmination of all that.  The contents
of my house are now in storage in a large number of cardboard boxes.  The
house has been returned to the real estate agent.  Final errands done.
Farewell functions have been had and sad goodbyes said to close friends.

I’m looking forward to seeing what this trip has in store for me.  I’ll keep
you updated as the voyages continue.

Going boldly,