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Day 56

Posted by on February 24, 2024

Start:  Telegraph Point

Finish:  Kempsey

Distance:  18

Total:  885

Last night I was fretting over how today would play out because I didn’t know how I was getting 18 miles back down the road to where I stopped walking yesterday. But never worry about things you have no control over.  I’ve learned by now it will all work out. 

Yesterday afternoon I talked to the nice receptionist here at my motel in Kempsey to see if she might know of someone going in the direction of Telegraph Point this morning that might give me a ride. Unfortunately that didn’t work out. This morning I was in no big rush, even though the forecast called for rain and thunderstorms most of the day and it was already raining on the radar at Telegraph Point when I got up. I had breakfast in my room, having bought it last night at the grocery store next door. By 8:30 I was ready to go with the only real option I had; try to hitch a ride to Telegraph Point since the bus doesn’t go there on weekends. So I walked through downtown Kempsey, over the bridge that spans the river running through town, and stationed myself on the shoulder of the road leading south out of town. It didn’t take 10 minutes until a nice guy named Tom offered to give me a lift. 

It’s always sort of a bummer that what takes less than 20 minutes to drive in an automobile takes me six hours to walk. But I get to see the scenery up close in real time so there are benefits. When I got to my starting point it was showering so I put my poncho on and it stayed on for the next five hours. My first four miles were on backroads, then I was back on the shoulder of the freeway. Of course there was the usual road spray from trucks but I’m through complaining about that. I finally got off the freeway with four miles to go to my motel and the rain had stopped so I could uncover. The rain held off until I was actually unlocking my motel door, then it started again. It’s been raining a lot here. Even Taylor Swift’s concert last night in Sydney had rain issues. 

Just as i was walking into the south side of Kempsey, I passed by the Slim Dusty Centre. That probably doesn’t mean anything to most of you, but Slim Dusty made an old Australian folk song famous called Waltzing Matilda, which most consider the unofficial national anthem of Australia. Slim Dusty, who died in 2003, was considered Australia’s King of Country Music. If you get a chance, go to YouTube and watch Slim Dusty sing Waltzing Matilda at the closing ceremonies of the 2000 Sydney Olympics. 80,000+ singing along; good stuff.

That’s it for my Saturday. I hope your weekend is a good one. JB. 

Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda, you’ll go ah Waltzing Matilda with me 🎶🎶

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David Ball
David Ball
1 month ago

At your suggestion, just watched on youtube Slim Dusty leading the crowd at the 2000 Sydney Olympics in a rousing rendition of Waltzing Matilda! I’m sure if he were alive today he’d say about your long walk up the coast… Good on ya!