Niges Bring Culture Back to the Outback. Feb 2020

It was around the time of the Australian Superbikes and we had been talking and talking about riding back down to Phillip Island. After everyone agreed to do it a number of problems arose and so we settled on a four day adventure around some rural NSW towns to see if we could breathe some life back into them. So Maccas Thursday morning the 27th we all gathered.

“Right, roll call men” said Nige

“We’re all here” said Moey.”No further discussion required”

“Shall we bow our heads in prayer for a safe journey” DD piped in.

“NOOOOOO!!” said no-one and everyone at the same time.

“I don’t need no church stuff ’cause I’m on the Ninga, the bestest and safest motorcycle evah!!” Barnaby shouted with confidence.

 

So after Barnaby went hooting and hollering past Nige and Lucky out through Paynes Crossing and then fell off no one was more more surprised than us.

“Did Boris do this?” we all asked remembering how he had already taken down two of the other Kawasakis on the last trip and this would have completed the set.

“No I ruddy well did not” Boris replied indignantly. “I was right back there trying to poke a stick between DD’s rear spokes, and was nowhere near this disaster.”

“Hardly a scratch boys. Um might go home tomorrow but.”

So a bit of tape and a bit of throwing stuff away and we all continued on our way, Boris still grumbling about the injustices of ¬†false accusations and whatnot. There may have been there odd “Well I never” and “How dare you!!” in there somewhere too.

Now, remember how important it is to all fill up at the same time right? And you know how some members of the gang, no names mentioned, ignore this rule? Well Moey decided he didn’t need to fill up wherever and was confident he could make it to Gunnedah on Old Sir Fallapart with “No issues whatsoever.” So twenty K’s short he spluttered to a stop. “Mmmmm, that’s odd” he said. “Whose going into town to pick up fuel and return it to me so I can complete my journey? Good friend Nige will it be you?” He asked expectantly.

“Yeah nuh” Said Nige from the side of his helmet as he tore off towards town “There’s beers to be had” A final one finger salute was the last we saw of him through the dust.

“DD old mate, old buddy, you’re a man of the cloth, surely you woulds’t give me comfort and succour in my time of need?”

“Look mate, God’s blessings on you and all that but I have important business in town vis a vis accomodation and beer to take care of” And he was off.

“Boris?”

“Sorry old boy but I’m not sure I’m the man for this job. I believe those Japanese machines run on some kind of rice blend which I’m not familiar with so…..toodloo.”

And that left Lucky who thought everyone was just stopping for a quiet chat about using proper manners in town and had gotten completely off Redboy and, not noticing everyone had gone, was scrabbling around in the dirt looking for his keys.

“Lucky”

“Found em! Yes Moey?” he said looking up and noticing the absence of his friends. “Where’d everyone go?”

“Never mind that, I’ve got a very important job that I only trust you with.”

“Oh, what is it Unky Momo?”

“Go get me one litre of 91octane fuel and bring it back here. Barnaby and I shall await your return”

“Oh boy I’m a good helperer” said Lucky “Was I your first choice Unky Momo?”

“Of course you were, Lucky, now skedaddle”

Anyway, we all arrived eventually and found Nige and DD and Boris in the bar up to their seventh beers. The night was uneventful and everyone slept except for Nige who somehow missed out on a room with ensuite.

 

Next morning, true to his word, Barnaby headed home early with his broken Ninja having already ordered the broken bits off Ebay the previous evening. That left four of us. Off we went and stopped in Barraba for lunch which was ok if you like that sort of thing, eating, which we did.

Lucky checking we are on the right route ” I think Barraba should be our next stop”

Continuing on our way towards Coonamble we stopped in the Mount Kaputar National park to check out some pretty amazing stone formations. Recent floods had greened up large areas of the landscape and the elevated roads were interspersed with causeways often running with shallow floodwaters. Nige was out front on one of theses roads when he dipped down into a causeway at the same time as a four wheel drive coming from the other direction was doing the same. It was the only other car we saw that morning but it put up a mighty wave of spray that nearly sent Nige to heaven. We laughed and laughed at this near death experience. Three out of four of us found it hilarious anyway.

Nice

Just reading about the rocks.

After a bit we headed off. it was pretty hot actually. Outside of Pilliga we found the hot springs which were nice in a warm water kind of way. Boris was keen to dive in but we were running short of time so…

“I say lads I’ve packed my speedos and am ready to swim.”

So that didn’t happen but it gave us time to land in Coonamble at what looked like the dirtiest, dingiest pub we’d ever seen. It had a funny kind of lean on it too.

“Yeah I’m outta here” Lucky protested before he took a cautious look inside. “There’s beer in here and a pie-warmer” so that settled that. Now inside was much nicer and there was the usual bunch of local curiosities. The raffle took place on a slightly sloping floor and the caller had the strangest, highest falsetto voice ever heard by any of us ever. His baggy grey tracksuit pants were topped by a yellow-grey polo shirt tucked in to his duds. Every time he called a number it flattened the beer and made the TV change stations. Frightening. DD would have been sure he was possessed by the devil had he been there and would have braced himself for an exorcism had he been there but, happily, Squeally Joe turned out to be pretty normal except for that voice. Moey won the meat raffle but was absent at the time so Nige claimed it instead. He reluctantly agreed to contribute it back to the local charity but the guy who accepted it took off pretty quickly and we all figured he was having a mixed grill for dinner.

Would not be out of place in The Vienna Boys Choir. Notice head all but gone from glass.

Winning

And losing

After a relatively quiet night with only a few drinks we all headed off to sleep. All rooms were equally ordinary but serviceable and Nige was happy he didn’t have to sleep in the Otto-Bin accomodation he usually landed.

 

We got up reasonably early and decided we should have breakfast in the bustling hubbub of Gulargambone. It boasted a booming population of five hundred people but they must have all still been in bed when we got there and stayed there till we left because every shop was closed or bordered up at 10am. Nobody walked the streets. Very odd. We found one place open where we had a choice of an egg and bacon roll or an egg and bacon roll. We all chose an egg and bacon roll and then got the hell out of there with its corrugated iron galah sculptures and whatnot best forgotten.

Looks good from outside but is really the old town hall with a cleared bit for limited breakfast options.

Weaving our way down through Armatree and on to Bathurst for a night at the Victoria pub. Another pleasant evening and we might have seen half a race of Superbikes but it wasn’t much. Rooms were ok if a bit run down and, wouldn’t you know, Nige’s room was worst of all. Checking out the dodgy door locks of his room, he spent the night huddled against the far wall with a lit candle and bag of toiletries for protection. There was also a rowdy bunch of Lebanese boys and girls, here for some music festival on the mountain, caterwauling throughout the night that just topped off a perfect evening. Lucky slept like a baby.

Hi tech security.

The Victoria. Not the Knickerbocker by any means.

Next morning, eyes hanging out of his head, Nige and the remainder of the gang were ready to go. Nige and Moey headed back home whilst Boris and Lucky headed to Muswellbrook for one last drink. Dinner was in a middle eastern restaurant (maybe it was Greek) and the food was good. Town was very quiet. Boris headed north next morning to catch up with his wife and his mother in law whilst Lucky headed towards Singleton for breakfast and then head home through Broke and Wollombi. Sadly, in his excitement, Lucky forgot to clip his bag to the bike and somewhere short of Singleton the whole lot fell off leaving Lucky penniless and starving. He had just enough fuel to get home. Lucky. That night a bloke sent Carole a message on facebook that he’d found the bag where it had bounced off the road into bushland. Bit lucky there. He lived only an hour north of Lucky’s place. Lucky eh!. Lucky got his bag back with everything still in it. How lucky was that! When asked how he explained all this he said, “I’m just Lucky” and all the Nige’s celebrated heartily.

Anyway everyone got home safely albeit in different directions and different times. Apparently Barnaby got the bits for his Ninja and its looking pretty good. So good news all round. We didn’t bring any real culture to the outback as it turned out but we gave it a go so good on us for that.

One Response to “Niges Bring Culture Back to the Outback. Feb 2020”

  1. Well done again Lucky. Your memory is way better than mine for a long distant ride. Reading your report has jostled a few brain cells into action.

    I have tittered as expected.

    At some point DD has just disappeared? Perhaps ‘The Rapture’?

    Squeally Joe wins my prize for the most recent new character we have met.

    Great report signed off with some wonderful references to how lucky Lucky is even when Lucky isn’t trying to be lucky.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.