Saturday, August 23, 2008

DAY 303: Day 3 off in Kalbarri

Fri 22nd August 2008
Cloudy, sunny later, 23 deg C
Elevation of /destination 5m
Distance to date 18687 km (11679 miles)

After a solid 9 hours sleep again I headed off to the surgery but had to make an appointment for 1230. On returning in good time I still had to wait until 1330 to see the doctor. He went through various questions that seemed irrelevant to me, such as how many children I had, and how many marriages!? Don’t know what all that was about but on finally getting to the gist of the problem it was clear that I needed another course of the same tabs that I was prescribed in Broome. While waiting for the pharmacist to make this up the surgery phoned to ask me to return and to pay the doctor’s fee. Pay? I’d thought that I could get treatment free under the reciprocal health care agreement between Australia and the UK, but apparently not. I hadn’t had to pay before when reporting to the Emergency departments of hospitals, but this, apparently, is different. I had to pay $60 (£30), which I wasn’t too chuffed about. If I’d known this I would have waited until Geraldton where there’s a hospital. Maybe I can claim it back via my travel insurance.
Later on I went around to Ashley’s for the barbie, and met his wife Tracey and sons Josh and Alec. Ashley is a bit of a character and very entertaining, with his gross and vociferous dislike of anything involving lycra or carbon fibre (he is very much a ‘traditionalist’ when it comes to bicycles), and we had a good old time with the chat and the Guinness. I mentioned that my brake blocks were worn out, which was cue for Ashley to jump up and fit 2 new pairs - one of which I would pay for but the second, good, recycled pair were free, and free labour thrown in - what a guy! He even trued the front wheel a bit to stop some rubbing, while I was attacked by mozzies lol. He’s heavily into supporting touring cyclists so anyone planning to pass this way should definitely get in touch - he can offer advice and help and even a roof over your head for a couple of nights if you ask him nicely. He can be contacted via the Bicyclewa website (
When I got back to the hostel a group were watching some mindless banale programme so I wasn’t able to tune into the Olympics again; oh well, there you go, each to his own. So an early night.

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