So, although we didn't quite tick everything off on our mammoth to-do list the essentials are done, goodbyes have been said and bags have been packed. We're ready to go. Argh! It feels bizarre after so much preparation and so many days packing and repacking that it actually happened in the end. We made it!
As I write we are on the plane travelling to Darwin. Beneath us is the red centre - miles upon miles of flat desert punctuated occasionally by huge salt lakes. I can't see it out of the window however because it is cloudy. One thing I have learned whilst in this country is just how massive it is. I travelled through the desert from the north to the south last year and spent two weeks gazing out of the window at the countryside whiz past. It is BIG. I used to complain about driving to Cardiff from Dorking. When you live in a country that's only three hours wide Australia feels galacticly big.
Last night involved delicious Indian food, plenty of wine and many an emotional goodbye to friends we have made whilst in Melbourne. It was a really great place to live and we met some fantastic people. It seems the stereotype is true- Australians really are incredibly friendly people. We both felt at home in that city. Leaving it was heartbreaking.
Now with everything packed, bikes boxed and the majority of my wardrobe replaced for tools and bike spares, we're ready to cycle closer to home -be it very slowly- and see what happens along the way.