Day 23 Tuesday 3875km
As the sun rose over the ocean and lit up the sky, I crawled out of my sleeping bag, packed up my gear, and hit the road headed south for Eden. I stopped in Bega and had a pretty ordinary brekkie, followed by a trip to the music store across the street for some new strings for my guitar. After leaving Bega, I rolled through the little village of Wolumla and kept my eyes peeled for the butter factory my mate Neil has been looking at the past year or so. I found it and had a nice chat with the lady Nicole who lives there. She and her husband had just won the U.S. green card lottery and were going to be moving out soon. I called Neil and told him I found the place. After that, I cruised down the coastal road through the beautiful towns of Pambula and Merimbula and eventually rolled into Eden. One of the locals back in Cobargo said that there was a communal garden in Eden that all of the residents use, and I hit the information stand to enquire about it. He didn’t know, so I headed to Two-fold bay and had some really nice fresh fish and chips and asked the ladies there. They pointed me in the right direction and soon I found it on top of the tallest hill in town. My whole reason for going south rather than west was because of the possibility of this garden. My intention is to paint a big painting of it to enter into the Blake prize for religious art, and as I stood looking at it my excitement began to build. I sat and painted a small oil panel and as I finished the sun’s strength was waning so I headed to the Great Southern Inn and booked a few nights at $20/night. After a lovely shower, I had a roast dinner and oysters Kilpatrick in the pub, and then went to sign up for the ping-pong competition. Unfortunately, being the off-season there was only four people in the whole pub and there was to be no competition. A very keen old bloke named Joe stepped up however, and after warming him up I thought I had a pretty decent opponent… until he said “alright, now let’s play a game and I’ll use my right hand.” As the games went furiously on, the jumpers came off and the schooners went down. By the time last call came around I think we were pretty much even. He left and I stayed and chatted to a couple from Cornwall before retiring upstairs.