Day 123, Wednesday, 20.05.2009

Helen, Greg, Bob and Mike greeting me at 7.30am with a late birthday present


I was easily landing on a shallow, flat sandy beach. It was about two hours after high tide, and about 70 m of beach exposed already! This is a tidal range of 8 m…well, it will be 12 meters at some point in the Kimberleys…

I unloaded all of my gear into three gear bags, knowing I had to load my boat on a roof rack soon and to wash all my stuff. I had a trolley…but carrying the empty boat was simply easier.

A good surf club must have an outdoor shower, I assumed, and walking up the first time with the first two gear bags I heard a strange hissing sound…what was that?? It took a while to realize it was only an automatically irrigation system for the lawn…ok, if there may be NO showers, THIS would be my shower! But the surf club was well equipped, and had plenty of working outdoor showers and waterhoses in the backyard.

How nice it feels, after such a paddling stint, to wash off salt and grime!!! Although only ‘cold’ showers, the water in the tropics is never really cold, actually just right! Even on the night’s paddle I constantly had to splash my body and head with water to stay more or less cool. It’s HOT here, and on a calm windstill night it stays HOT!!! The shower was simply a delight, and actually woke me up perfectly!

I picked a spot on the concrete pavement to put up my tent, happy about NO sand and NO wet lawn…but what happened about 10 min after I was snuggling on my matress? Another automatically irrigation system started to work and gave my tent some showers in regular intervals…well, at least it started already to clean my tent from sand and bird shit!!!

I fell asleep after the usual ‘ok’ messages at 5.30, with earplugs and a scarf on my eyes, to get at least some hours of sound sleep, as I was hoping…in my distant memory I still realized a car was pulling up the surf club, just when I put in my earplugs…my Darwin support crew already arrived.

Two hours later, I was dreaming there were people out there, singing “Happy Birthday!”…but it was no dream, just aome quietish sound due to my earplugs…

There were Mike, Bob, Helen and Greg outside, having to wake me in this lovely way, after two hours of waiting and letting me sleep (well, they didn’t know at that point when I arrived and when I fell actually asleep…) 

All of them were due to go to work soon! They felt sorry about waking me, but I was more happy to be taken care of!

I got a “late” birthday present from Bob, thanks for that! Some chocies, just what the doctor ordered…  

They have decided it will be best for me to stay at Helen’s house at Nightcliff, which was not as far out as Mike’s house. Thanks for hosting me, Helen!

The kayak and gear got loaded on Bob’s car, and after getting introduced to teh facilities they all had to be off to a regular day’s work! I was starting to stuff washing the mashine, and checked and rinsed the rest of the gear. Tempted to just lay down and continue sleeping, but I completed my gear chores and was even able to repaint my toenails, when Helen came in for lunchbreak to take me to town for an afternoon’s lazy shopping day. I simply felt like it…strolling around town by myself, playing a simple tourist woman…

I tried some airy dresses, and bought a new lovely one for feeling female again! Red…my second favourit ecolor after black. It will fit nicely in my gear bag later and won’t take much room or weight…

Helen dropped my actually first at the post office, where I was collecting a bunch of parcels from allover the world! Birthday presents from family and friends and soem replacement gear from sponsors. Quite a pile! I was keeping the excitement to open them until late night at home, as Helen was driving off to work in her car with them.

There was one beautiful handmade birthday card sent from Geoff and Sue Payne from Canberra – so much loving work in it that I felt like sharing! Thanks very much, Geoff and Sue!!!

I had a radio interview date at ABC radio Drawin in the afternoon, and as I was just close to the ABC house in town, it was best for them for me to quickly pop in and talk live for about five minutes.

Bob picked me out of town at about 5pm, and after a short sightseeing drive around Darwin we met up with a bunch of surfclub people in a loveley beach front restaurant.

I was back home at Helen’s at 8.30pm, starting to unpack my parcels! But I fell asleep soon…lovely dreams on my mind…

2 comments on “Day 123, Wednesday, 20.05.2009


Sea Kayaking History in the making!
May the Gods be with you on the treacherous West Coast!



Congrats on another stage, well done.
Wish we could hear the interview, is it on-line somewhere, can you, someone, post a link? Have a great holiday, here it’s half term for the kids, and for you it must be life a half term done too. Have fun!

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