Alice Springs, 2nd February 2005
The train station of Alice Springs is hot, very hot. It took the Ghan an evening, a night and a day to get me here. The view of the desert was fantastic. Almost nothing happens yet that is precisely so beautiful. When an emoe passes by the whole train watches.

The desert is dry, yet the is some vegetation everywhere, some salt-bush at least, a dry grey bush. How these bushes can stand the dry heat is a mystery to me. Everything looks dry, dry, dry here.

The largest part of my luggage consists of 2 T-shirts, without my backpack. Oops, I do like to travel light, but this is a bit all too light. Alice Springs is a town in the middle of the desert, a modern town with lots of shops in the center.

River in Alice Springs

Dry river
The map optimistically shows a river, with "Usually Dry" as remark. Hm, the river looks very dry as well. There are some trees growing in the river, but they look very draught resistant. Bridges span the river, but you can walk underneath them. A road further down just crosses the river bed, without a bridge. Now, it looks quite rare for that road to get flooded.

The shower in the hotel supplies hot water and... hot water. The cold water is steaming hot, too hot for a shower. It takes a couple of minutes until the cold water cools down to just warm. The water pipes probably run across the hot roof here.

The old Telegraph Station is certainly worth a visit. In the old days this is where Morse signals got amplified, between London and Sydney. The telegraphist acted as a human amplifier. He listened to the incoming signals and re-tapped them. This Morse code amplifying station ran 24 hours a day. It is odd that it is so silent here in the old hotspot of communication.

From NZAC Hill Alice Springs looks like a tiny green spot in an otherwise dry desert. It now is now possible to see the river, not because of the water, well... yes, it is because of the water. There are more trees here. The river is a green ribbon of trees, who can reach the water with their roots. The river may be dry, outside the river it is even drier.

Till next Nut,