Taiping, 10 April 2009


The Flinders Highway on the Eyre Peninsula is empty.

Opposing cars are far and few between.

Meeting another car is a rare event that requires a moment of celebration.

So car drives in the Australian outback salute each other with the outback wave.

This wave looks simple yet is a delicate ritual.

Enthusiam is fine, yet do not loose your cool.

Don't get exited is an Australian way of life.

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Foreign tourists fail to understand the concept.

Look out for rented campervans.

You will see a forest of waving arms from all inhabitants.

That is wrong. Very wrong indeed. Not relaxed at all.

Drivers of busses and roadtrains execute the wave with perfection.

They are at home on the road, with years of wave experience. And it shows.

Roadtrain, Ceduna Their wave is minimalistic. They greet with just one, one and a half finger.

Those fingers wave just enough and at the perfect moment too.

As facing traffic you need to focus well to see the wave of a road train.

Road trains are more easy for me being a recumbent cyclist.

The kings of the road slow down a bit when they see me approaching.

They even move over a bit, so their truck does not blow me off the road.

Of course their wave remains perfectly relaxed, minimalistic, one raised finger. Yet their whole heavy awsome machines wave to make room for me.

It is almost the biggest wave you can get, a sign of respect.

Almost even better is the salute from cargo train drivers. These heavy weights can not even move over.

Train drivers are hidden behind dusty windows.

Now a relaxed minimal wave is fine, yet a invisible greating fails miserably.

So train drivers salute blowing their mighty horns.

Now that is a sound you can not ignore. A train horn sounds like a serious alarm. It is half a warning, half a salute.

Fun: return their salute with a blow of my own Swedish bike horn. Pwap, pwap!

It is like a little rubber ducky saluting an elephant.

The window of the train cockpit opens for... ... a big thumbs up!

As the train passes I see a giant smile on the drivers face.

smiley Cycle Australia on a recumbent is like surfing on a wave of smiling faces.

Till next nut,