On the Road

07 Sep 2009
Posted by timecurve
We returned to Brisbane last night from a solid month of traveling—New Zealand, Canberra, Sydney, and Melbourne. Most of the trip was work related, with a sound garden and keynote address in Canberra, meetings and interviews in Sydney, and talks in Wellington and Melbourne, but there were also moments of pure pleasure and great joy. The geysers of Rotorua, the composers' dinner in Sydney, and the brothel turned bar in Melbourne come immediately to mind. The capstone of the trip, however, was the four-day drive from Melbourne back to Brisbane that we made with our friends Paul Draper and Jenny Wilson. Paul has a new Saab roadster convertible (born of jets, as they say), the perfect car for traveling 1,700 kilometers. (Multiply that by 0.621 for the mile equivalent.) We didn't take the coast road, either, but instead, drove through the interior, traveling for hours without phone service, often on winding roads with steep drop offs and no guard rails, and staying in places of local color—the first night at a pub in Rutherglen (pictured above right) (we all highly recommend Jones wine, by the way), the second in Katoomba in the Blue Mountains at a B&B with its own French restaurant (complete with a waiter with an attitude), the third in a heritage cottage in Bellingen (filled with flowers and memorabilia of a bygone age). Along the way, we passed by the three sisters (pictured above left) tidy town, the golden guitar, the Henty Man, and the secret museum beneath the IGA. The landscape, which changed constantly, was spectacular and traveling by car was a great way not only to see the country, but also to experience it as it might have been way back when. With no Internet access to tempt us, it was a trip out of time and space—needed because of too much work for too long a period of time; enjoyed because of the chance to spend down time with true friends. Back in Brisbane now means firing up the computers and going back to work. But the memory of the trip will linger on forever. Thanks, Paul and Jenny. With friends like you, we can't wait to get on the road again.