The end of the road

Well, that’s it …after nearly 50,000kms the trip is over. I’m in Sydney, with a bit less than 3 weeks to go before my flight to Thailand.
The last couple of weeks, since Birdsville, have been a bit of an anti-climax knowing that it was all over bar the shouting, so to speak. Even driving down the Birdsville track was anticlimactic, every kilometre just taking me closer to the bitumen and the final drive to Sydney. I had planned to take a detour and spend a few days at my favourite campsite, Geehi in the Kosciusko National Park, but the road in was closed by a landslide so that was not to be.
The final stats :
Total mileage : 49973 kms
fuel used : 5115 lt
fuel cost : $8292
food : $3892
Accommodation : $ 2841
repairs and replacements : $4977
tours, entry fees and miscellaneous : $ 2251
Nearly half the repairs and replacements cost was for new tyres that I would have had to replace anyway, and good 4WD tyres don’t come cheap. Unlike several other people I saw along the way I had no tyre problems, not even a flat tyre, let alone the punctures and shredded tyres that others received.
I did a lot more distance than most people, zigzagging all over the country instead of the usual lap around the coast, which is why it’s nearly 50,000kms rather than the usual 30,000 or so, and pushed up the other costs consequentially.
So was it worth it ? Yes, definitely yes.
Would I do it again ? Probably, but longer and slower in a caravan or mobile home. I’m not getting any younger and I think my days of swagging it are probably over ! There were many places I could have stayed longer, and would have with a bit more comfort and a solid roof over my head.
Will I do it again ? That all depends on how things work out in Thailand ….who knows, perhaps the expat life is not for me and I sneak home disillusioned after a year or so ?
As some of you may have guessed from the blog title I’m a Jimmy Buffet fan, and as he sings in one of his songs

And it doesn’t work out there’ll never be any doubt
That the pleasure was worth all the pain

I guess I’ll find out one way or another, but I’m going to give it at least a year, so I guess that will be a blog subject for October 12, 2014.
For now I’ve got enough to worry about with getting rid of my car and sorting all my stuff down to necessary, not needed, and a whole lot of in-between ! I’ve used my frequent flier miles to upgrade to business class, which gives me 30kg baggage plus frequent flyer club bonus of 10kg, but my camera gear is going to take a big proportion of that, plus books and documents that I need/want to keep. So I think I’ll be paying for a suitcase of unaccompanied baggage.
I’m prepared to sell the ute and camping gear for a ridiculously cheap price of $3000, I did have one person here at the hostel interested but he failed to ring me back yesterday to confirm ….maybe he was all talk and no cash.
If he does not see me today, I’m not going to hold it any longer, the For Sale signs will be going up in every hostel I can find.

About Mike

A recently retired "Baby Boomer" , looking forward to having more time for my photography and travel.
This entry was posted in Australia, Random musings, Thailand, Travel and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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