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Published: February 9th 2015
Tasmania Day 1
We arrived in Melbourne airport without hitch but without significant sleep, as usual, despite the journey taking 30 hours since leaving home and another 6 hours to go before we arrive in Devonport, Tasmania. Alas I received a message from Valerie stating that she had been delayed an hour in Sydney since they would not allow her bike to be stowed in her plastic bag but had to be put in a box. She will have to catch the next flight in 4 hours and get a taxi to the motel. The plane to Tassy seems tiny compared to the A 380 double decker and I could almost touch both sides of the fuselage with arms outstretched. Valerie eventually arrived complete with bike. Another problem was that John H who had flown in from from Omaha had not got his bike with him, apparently still in Los Angeles airport. We had a good meal at the RSL Club as recommended by Greg, our local taxi driver, before our bodies succumbed to extensive weight of our eye lids. John H , my room companion told me he snores. If he did, or not, I could not tell.
After a good nights sleep and a good breakfast we spent our rest day? in the excellent maritime museum and the Railway Museum in Don. This entailed a walk of over 2 miles along the south coast, firstly too Mersey Bluff Lighthouse, where we saw a coockaburra flying around which had the decency to alight on a nearby branch for a photograph. Coles Bay was looking beautiful with its rocky outcrops and turquoise sea before we followed the path along the Don River to the museum. After we looked at the extensive collection of locos and rolling stock we took a ride on the diesel train back to Coles Bay before a visit to the bicycle shop to see what we could buy but did not need. I resisted myself I needed two bottle cages for my new bike when it arrives in April. A phone call at five o'clock told John H that his bike had been delivered to the Devonport Airport and was on its way - bravo. John
can now relax. The sun has been beating down all day without a cloud in the sky and we are frazzling away with the heat. The meal tonight was at the croquet club and was basic but good and inexpensive. It only opens for meals on a Friday night and is run by volunteers. We have had our meal two nights now in places that looked like canteens but have been surprisingly good.
Now Saturday morning and off on our bikes to Penguin following the Coastal Cycleway and over sawdust bridge. We stopped at Ulverstone to have a brew and look at the war memorial which has big pillars with chains connecting them and clocks on top. We visited the motorbike show for a short while but was a bit disappointed to see modern bikes and Harley tractors. The road along the coast to Penguin is very beautiful and enhanced by the railway line hugging the coast between the road and sea. We landed mid afternoon, in 25 degrees heat and clear sky and had yet another brew and cake and Deborah a swim in the sea before going to our apartments for a clean up. In the town there is a massive big Penguin where we all had our photo taken, as everyone does who passed through here. Unfortunately we did not see any humpback whales in the Bass Strait, as we did on our 2013 visit.
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