Port Lincoln, 18 February 2008


The sun sets. For the moment the red sunrays reflect in the Spencer Gulf. Then the sun hides behind the Eyre peninsula.

I just walked off that peninsula, across the bridge at Port Augusta. That makes Port Augusta a bit of a special city. The city is half on the main land, half at the start of a peninsula.

A little bit west is the start of the Stuart Highway, running across Australia. A short walk along that highway took me to The Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden today. A guided tour told me everything about how nifty plants survive in an arid environment. The tour was worth the walk in the heat.

roadsign: to Perth or Darwin Just before the Stuart Highway a traffic sign shines in full glory. It shows a simple choice: Here, you can head two ways:

  1. to Perth
  2. or to Darwin.
The sign does not list kilometres. And it does not have to. Both cities are a long way to go, several days driving. Here kilometres don't make sense anymore. Cross this continent and measure your distances in either hours or days.

Go backwards, follow the highway behind me and you'll be in Adelaide in just a few hours. What a nice crossroad:

Port Augusta feels like the centre of Australia.

It is a bit of a special feeling to be back in Port Augusta. A year ago it looked very small, but after a short stay in Cowell, Port Augusta is a world class city. It even has GSM coverage for my mobile phone!

The sun sets and I am staring at the water of the Gulf.

At sunset the world is grey scaling. sunset, ships in Port Augusta The Flinders Ranges now loose their last bit of blue, and take a shade of grey just before they are the first ones to hide in darkness.

The ships left of me are still barely visible, now black only. These ships loose their details, turn into grey blobs on the water. It is dark already in the north, to my right. The road trains transform into a string of lights crawling across the bridge. And finally, the grass turns grey.

The moon seems to shine stronger, supported by the first stars. It just takes moments for the Milky Way to emerge. This remains a beautiful sight for my European eyes, who are not used to such a bright clear sky.

The sun is hidden now. The sky is still a bit red, but the red is fading. Even a sunset turns grey, if you wait long enough.

O, how I look forward to a tour in a couple of weeks. Sleeping a few nights, with the Milky Way as a view. That is beyond grey, sleep in just pure black and white. It has a kind of elegant simplicity. Grey is way to complex. 16.777.216 colours is ridiculous in abundance.

Till next nut,