Chatted with people in the kitchen while I fixed all the wrong words in yesterday's post - "I like pubs. I lick the atmosphere, the people, the feet." - then filled my water bottles and got on my way. Thank heavens for cordial, it made the water drinkable!
Within 45 minutes I was exhausted. Really, really stuffed. I slowed my speed to within safe limits for how I felt and after a full hour on the road, pulled into Belladonia, 80km from where I started. Decided to eat, have a milkshake, read. An hour or so later, I rang shazgirl to let her know where I was and that I wasn't doing well. Wasn't sure how much further I was going to get, so thought she should know in case I didn't make it to another town. She asked if I was going to make it back in time for the appointment on May 1st. I still didn't think I'd miss it.
Eventually dragged myself away from Belladonia and within a very short space of time found myself wondering where I could pull over. As it happened, nowhere, since there were roadworks that went on for ages. According to a sign, they're expected to be finished sometime next year - they were started early last year.
Eventually some way past the works, I found a rest stop. Drove in as far as I could so that I could avoid the three caravans parked there, curled up in the backseat and slept for a few hours. Not sure how many. Just know that when I woke up it was almost 4pm. Clambered over into the front seat and headed off again.
Passed a dingo eating roadkill and almost stopped for a photo, but had lost so much time that day, plus had only been driving for ten minutes, that I decided to keep going. Then I reached the two wedgies eating roadkill twenty minutes later and decided that no, had to try for a shot or seven. As soon as my car stopped, one took off for a tree, the other hopped over behind a bush. Taking my time, I moved slowly and took a few shots of the one behind the bush, then it flew off to a nearby trunk. I continued to move slowly, snapping away with the camera. Got within about 10 metres before it finally got bored with the silly human and took off.
I was set to head back to the car when I saw the other one. The tree it was in wasn't quite framed by the god-light of the late afternoon sun, but if I moved around and forward a bit, I should be able to get a couple of nice shots. That one let me get within 15 or so metres before if took off. But some of the shots look like they'll turn out quite nicely.
It's a funny situation. On one hand I wish hespa had been there, because she would have been rapt. On the other, I would have felt like I couldn't stalk the birds myself, either because Hespa would have been trying to, and/or I would have loaned her my camera. She's the keen birder, but I'm the bloke that wants photos of everything. This isn't a complaint about Hespa at all, more a flag on something we'll have to try and figure out if we're ever in this situation while travelling together. Better for us to figure out the ground rules so that we can both avoid frustration.
Drove on and finally reached Caiguna, as it was getting dark, having spent an hour on the wedgies. Now wished that I had paused and taken some pics of the dingo, but if I had, I may have missed the eagles. *shrugs*
One amusing thing. I often talk to myself. As I neared Caiguna, my mind was already thinking about tomorrow's trip. "Not bad," I said to myself, "tomorrow I just have to do Cocklebiddy, Madura, and then home." I paused, something wasn't quite right, then I realised what it was, I had unconsciously referred to Eucla as home. That made me smile quite a bit.
Rang Shaz, told where I was, had a milkshake, then headed back to the Caiguna blow-hole rest stop. Going with my gut, I followed the trails way beyond the blow-hole and found a nice little spot to stop. It had been set up as a proper little camping spot, complete with a place for a fire. Thought about lighting a fire, figuring that it would be nice to sit and read by firelight, the way I used to when droving took me away from the abattoirs. But without matches, and only a dodgy car cigarette lighter, I went without.
No tent tonight, car will do.