I sat at the café in Hawker and cried. Hawker is like any of the Flinders Ranges towns that are so familiar to me from my youth. I know why I have been lacking my motivation. I need some time by myself to process this. My journey is coming to an end, and I need some time alone.
The road to Quorn
Clement and I are in different places mentally. I cursed at every bit of mud and every rock in the road while cycling in the sun through the grassy, green fields on the beautiful Mawson Trail. Clement hurtled forward with excitement and enthousiasm, making my irritation even more complete.
Do I want to get home quicker? Finish this two-year life-time dream? No. I don’t want it to end. Yes. I want to be in Brighton, Adelaide. I want to walk down the jetty where mother’s ashes dissipated into the water. I want to be back. I don’t know what I want, and so here I am, in the café, bursting into tears.
Clement and I parted ways today. He continued down the bumpy but beautiful Mawson Trail. I took the straight, flat, bitumen road and entered into myself, gliding along with a tailwind in the sun. Over and over again I burst into tears. I was going to Quorn where my grandmother was born, and where we returned every year to walk and enjoy the Flinders Ranges. I had flashbacks of those times. Of my grandmother. Of my mother. Of everything. And everything brought back the tears. The journey is ending, and here I am.
I pulled over at a windmill. I used to love these windmills as a kid. We used to count them when driving up here. A game to pass the kilometres. These windmills are so iconic in my mind. I sat next to it and ate a whole packet of Tim Tam biscuits. It was sunny and warm, and I didn’t want to arrive in Quorn. But I did want to. I don’t know anything anymore.
I checked in to the first hotel I passed in Quorn, showered away the infinity of dirt and grime from my weather-beaten body, and then went to the train station to stare at the station building with ‘Quorn’ written above the door in big, friendly letters. Everywhere I looked were memories.
Clement will catch up with me tomorrow, and my father will drive up from Adelaide. We are going to spend a weekend here in this memory-filled place. Then it’s the last stretch – the last 350km – into Adelaide.