On the Frog & Toad

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March 24th 2015
Published: March 24th 2015
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The mobile coffee van, this is where we got our inspration
14 & 15 March 2015

A while ago we had put our names down to help on the Life-cycle for Canteen charity bike ride, we offered our assistance to our then president of the Toyota Landcruiser Club and unfortunately all we could offer was a Saturday and Sunday, so Bob said he would see if he could make it work and call us back.

Sure enough Bob did call back and accepted our offer of two days help and another of our members would do the final day on Monday when the bike ride would complete.

There had been a lot of email traffic over this event as our job was to drive the support vehicle which was at the rear of the “Green Team” and our friend and fellow club members Jack and Sue were leading the group.

The reason for the large amount of e-mails was because of strict rules we had to follow, in regards to the road rules etc, basically our job drilled down was to protect the peloton to ensure no vehicle could drive into the cyclists or do something equally stupid.

We left home at about 6.15 am
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Setting up the truck for the start of Life Cycle, because our canopy is alloy, I had to put the flashing light on our shovel
and needed to be at the start point by 7am as we had signs to affix to the truck and a rotating orange flashing light on top.

We arrived nice and early and hurrah there was already a coffee truck on site, so Caroline went and got our morning coffees whilst I put the sign on the truck to advise other motorists that there were cyclists on the road, also make sure the first aid kit was placed in an easy place just in case anyone needed it.

We had filled up our jerry cans with 70 Litres of water and also put our fridge in the truck so we could keep all our smaller water bottles chilled so we could at least give the thirsty riders a cool fill up with chilled water whenever they wanted it.

We were ready, we met all our riders for the start of the ride and out of 22 riders I would think that about 18 of them were Ladies and they were raring to go.

The ride started at 8.20 Jack and Sue set off with all their ducklings following off in a line and the first 20k’s
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Cycling on the hard shoulder, its safer there
were on a very busy dual carriage way, so we were not only having to settle in to the ride, we had never done this before and the responsibility was huge. Caroline had read the road rules from cover to cover and made sure that I was completely briefed.

The maximum speed was about 22k’s an hour, the first thing you need to do is blank out the fact that you are only travelling at a slow speed and you will be holding up the traffic, but hey ho, the other traffic users would just have to get used to it. I am sure it is frustrating if you are in a hurry, but this is all for a good cause.

The riders had done about 20 k’s when we pulled off for a break, as soon as we stopped, we went straight to the fridge and asked the riders if they wanted their bottles filled up which everyone did, then it was handing out the sunscreen, jellies for energy and the oddest one, someone asked us for toilet paper and glue, this was not the same person and the glue was to repair a cycling shoe, I
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Jack and Sue in the lead vehicle
guess you know what the toilet paper was for.

The stop was only about ten minutes, someone had to fix a puncture but that was soon done and the riders were again on their way.

It was great to see how the riders just got in to the rhythm of the ride, the last rider of the group, use to give hand signals, to tell us what the group was doing and from behind it did look rather odd, but of course very helpful.

The ride cycled on at 22k’s an hour and once we had got off the main dual carriage way our stress levels went down, we got in to the job and started to enjoy it, we commented that it was a great way to see area’s that we were unfamiliar with at such a slow speed we had time to absorb what we could see and enjoy them. Some lovely places to set up home but a little bit too far out of the city.

The Green team arrived in the village of Serpentine at lunch time and the stop was at the local school the canteen was opened and the catering
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Our view, all the cyclists were taking a bypass route
crew had made sandwiches for everyone.

Now let us tell you what this is all about, LifeCycle for Canteen is a charity for Children and Young Adults living with the effects of Cancer, maybe a parent or a sibling or even suffering from Cancer themselves, so without making it complicated, Lifecycle is the mechanism to raise money for Canteen.

All the Canteen kids were in Red, so they were called the Red Group and they too were riding in this event and at every major stop when all the Groups were together, Canteen kids got up and told everyone their story.

Now when we took this gig on, I didn’t know how I was going to cope emotionally listening to these young people explaining how they coped with Cancer in their lives and in many respects having to grow up pretty quickly but we were here and had to get on with it as best as we could.

When everyone had a sandwich and a drink, the first guy of the Red group grabbed the Microphone and stood up and introduced himself, he told everyone his name and he said when he was diagnosed with Cancer
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At last, we were on quieter roads
he had nobody in the world to share this journey with, he was introduced to Canteen who coached him through his difficult journey.

I listened to this guy and felt such empathy for him listening intently to his words.

Once it was done, we were given our exit time and we had to leave exactly as it was determined, so the Green team were on the move again, and to our amazement we had lost some riders who decided they wanted to ride with and other group and gained some riders from other groups.

The time for “Team Green’s” departure was written on the board, and we had to muster our riders who were just finishing up filling themselves up with food and liquids for the next leg of the journey, I cannot tell you just how many riders were sucking on sachets of energy gel to fill themselves up with inner fuel.

Jack and Sue pulled out with the Green team peddling away, whilst Caroline and I took up the rear position and soon we were back into the swing of the ride and all the Green team seemed happy with the progress.

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Stopping for morning Tea
stopped for another couple of afternoon breaks where cakes and lollies were handed out for energy along with our ice cold water, which seemed to be popular.

Whilst driving along at such a slow speed it allowed me just to think and look at the amazing countryside we were in, I was thinking about how years ago in the UK when the CB fad took hold when a lot of people started to use CB radio for a bit of fun, sure some UK truck drivers used it, on 27 mhz, but it seemed to just slowly die.

Like the US, Australia used CB radio and over the years it morphed in to UHF radio and this is what we were using to communicate with the Green team leader, Jack and Sue at the front of the peloton and really without it our job would be really difficult.

We arrived at our first evening stop in Pinjarra, we had booked a motel room at the comfort inn where a lot of the Toyota Landcruiser club members who were also donating their time had also booked rooms which was going to make it fun.

We followed the
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Our First morning stop at Serpentine Primary school.
Green team riders all the way in to the Pinjarra leisure centre and once they were all safe and sound we drove the short distance and checked in to the motel.

The life cycle crew were preparing dinner tonight and we had to be back at the leisure centre at 6.00pm as everyone for the whole event would be there.

We were knackered as soon as we got in to our room we flopped on the bed, hoping to have a bit of a snooze, but we needed to get showered and back out in time not before picking up a bottle of wine and a couple of beers as the leisure centre was not licensed, so it was BYO (bring your own).

We got to the leisure centre in time and found a seat with the TLCC crew and soon we were listening to other young people from Canteen telling their story of how they were dealing with cancer in their lives.

I was quite fascinated just how confident these youngsters were and how honestly they spoke of their situations.

One thing I was impressed about was just how important the Toyota Landcruiser Club
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Just taking Five
assistance was and how grateful they were for the effort we had all made, as far as we were concerned it was great fun and definitely for a worthy cause.

We had a great dinner with our friends and soon we were hankering to get to our beds as it had been a long a busy day.

Sunday we were up and atem pretty early as we had to be back at the leisure centre for 7.00am, they were laying on breakfast for everyone and they were specific on the time we had to be there as the breakfast was organised in a roster to suit the cyclists leaving time, the brown and blue groups left a lot earlier than the rest of us.

We had our breakfast, amassed the Green team which riders had again changed and set off. We were both given a green cape, accepted by the Green team as fully fledged members.

We were now in familiar territory as the Green Group where cycling through areas that we knew, the morning tea break was at a park area just down the road from the Yarloop steam workshops were we went for Andy
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some of the riders at Serpentine Primary school
Bayley’s birthday weekend.

It was definitely evident that our riders were drinking more water than they were yesterday, as we seemed to be watering other teams who were coming to us, so we could fill their water bottles up as well, we didn’t have a problem with except we ran out of the chilled water. After cake and lollies we were again off.

Our lunch time destination was Harvey and the Lyons Club of Australia were doing a BBQ for all the riders and support crews, when we arrived some of the groups were already there, the Brown team were pro riders and their route was a lot longer than everyone else’s and I know it doesn’t make a difference to anything but some of the Brown team were riding really serious high tech bikes that would set you back over 10,000 dollars, so they obviously took it seriously, that said they were still raising money for charity, just like everyone else.

With lunch done, we again set off for our afternoon leg and had our first stop was at a little school that had been arranged by the organisers, the school had let us use their
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These bikes have changed in technology since I was a kid
grounds and all the riders mustered and were looking in good shape.

We only had 10 kilometres to go before the end of the ride for us which was at Brunswick Junction, we arrived at about 4.30 and were really disappointed as this is where we had to leave as we could not do the last day to complete the ride.

All the riders were in and the only thing we had to do was to remove the big yellow and black sign from the back of the truck, the flashing light on the roof, and hand it over along with the drums of water and pass them on to the lady that was lucky enough to be going on for the last day of the ride.

We pulled out of Brunswick junction heading North with about an hour and a half drive, in front of us, considering it took 2 days to drive the same distance it seemed a bit fast! We had had the most amazing weekend and so much fun we were delighted to do something for a great cause.

Additional photos below
Photos: 33, Displayed: 30


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The Red Team, these are the people from Canteen
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Ten Grand, Really!!
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Waiting to leave for the next leg
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Volunteers from the Toyota Landcruiser Club
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Pinjarra sports Hall that would be a bedroom for some on Saturday night
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Where we had out evening meal on Saturday night
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Jack, Ready to go with his Green streamers on
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Caroline in her "Cranky Cape"
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Sunday morning early, nice and quite

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