It was 5am and I’d been skunked for waves. I amused myself by playing with a replica great White hanging in the Shell Station. I should have been shooting two hours South to catch a few waves at a break Known as ‘Monuments’ or ‘Monys’ or ‘That place with all the boogie-boarder farkin blowins shitting in the sanddunes’.
I decided to go West looking for another wave.
I got lost on a bunch of empty dirt roads that lead no-place in particular. I rolled slowly through grasslands turning towards the coast whenever a road became available, trying to remember how many turns I’d been making in order to find my way back out.
I found more of the same sandstone cliffs and wild, windy seas growing wilder and windier by the minute. I had blown it for sure. Blown it bad. So… Adelaide. It was only a Nine Hour drive. I’d Already been driving around for 5 looking for waves. Burning petty, cursing myself for getting my explorin’ blood up when I should have gone the safe option.
It was a long drive. A hot drive. A flat, dull ugly drive through rocky farmlands and milltowns that consisted of giant wheat silos, a service station, the occasional shearing shed and little else…
Some Cop stopped me midway across the continent. He scraped my tongue and looked pretty keen to find me to be the dope fiend I looked with my glazed tired eyes, stained teeth, filthy wagon with shit written in the dirt overflowing with a weeks worth of garbage. It was a pretty decent bet.
Though it was Snake eyes for Bored Rural Copper. No dice that day.
Iron Knob was a mining town and looked to be active again. 17 years ago it was dead, the mine was dead too. Now there’s a FiFo town of Dongas propped up alongside the base of the mountain. The mine is active with giant tonka trucks racing up the side of the open cut. Highway signs indicated there would be petrol and food there.
There wasn’t shit but rusted out cars and gutted houses. Some dude in a bowling shirt walked down the empty main street. Solidly built with scruffy matted hair and a downcast face watching the dead ground under his feet. The front of his shirt was covered in keys. Keys sowed onto the breast of the shirt in three thick rows. Shiny in the afternoon sun.
I wondered what his life must be like in a dead town like this.
I wasn’t going to ask him.
I got into Adelaide after Sundown.
I got into Victor Harbour late in the night.