Challenge: Across Australia on a Motorbike
When my boyfriend asked me to go on a holiday with him several weeks ago, I was incredibly excited and immediately said yes. I didn’t ask him where he wanted to go, because it didn’t really matter to me; I just wanted us to be together. It wasn’t until I learned that he was planning for us to go somewhere on his motorbike that I realized that this holiday is going to differ from what I imagined. So, not only am I happy and excited, but also determined to be responsible and prepared for the trip the best that I can.
I’m doing my homework
We came to the conclusion that we will be spontaneous and not have a detailed plan of the journey. However, we also agreed that roaming the country without any plans is a really bad idea, and so we made a list of things we want to see in Western Australia (Shark Bay and Monkey Mia being on top) and decided in which order we will do so, but we didn’t book any accommodation in advance. Still, we got maps printed out, and we calculated how much money we will need for the gas, food, and accommodation. I believe these things are necessary to prepare in advance no matter how spontaneous you are. I’m also looking at the weather forecast and I’m glad we won’t be travelling too far up north since it’s wet season November to April.
Oh, the luggage…
I knew this part was going to be tricky, but I must admit it is driving me crazy already. Since we will be traveling by bike (his bike), we can’t take too many things. Already the tent and the sleeping bags are taking up plenty of space, and we don’t want to be too heavy. I kissed my pretty high heels and shimmery dresses goodbye, and decided to be as practical as possible: comfy vintage Harley Davidson tee is one of my favorite pieces to wear because it’s soft and comfortable and I can sleep in it if need be. I’m taking several tees, nice jeans for going out and sweatpants for traveling and sleeping in; also, a bikini, couple of towels, my biker boots and flats. Minimalistic and yet useful – needless to say my boyfriend was thrilled for not having to argue with me to unpack something.
You’ve all heard about the deadly animals in Australia, and people from all over the world think that every insect and every animal is trying to kill you. While there are some pretty dangerous animals, most of them you won’t encounter on the road. However, we are both traveling across the country in our biker boots which protect our feet and ankles from snakes and insect bikes, and if we’re camping we never leave our shoes outside the tent. There is always a bottle of water at hand when he’s driving, and I’ve learned that the easiest way to stay cool on the scorching hot asphalt is to put on a wet tee and drive like that. It might be dry soon enough but it cools you down.
Even though the very thought of this freaks me out, I still think about what might happen if we run out of gas or something happens to our bike. While my boyfriend is by no means an experienced mechanic, he has a useful toolkit and knows what to do in case of a minor breakdown. We are planning on having a supply of petrol, oil, and water at all times because you never know what might happen (perhaps someone else might need our help and not the other way around). I’m also carrying a ‘survival kit’ with some matches, plasters, bandages, and some basic medicine. I’m praying not to have to use any of that, but it’s good to know we have it covered.
Although traveling by motorbike is not something I would ever plan to do by myself, I have realized that stepping out of my comfort zone can be a good thing. I will take this chance to be more spontaneous than I usually am, and I really hope this experience will help me grow. Besides, can anything compare to the feeling of absolute freedom while you’re travelling across the country on a motorbike with someone you love? I don’t think so.