Information on this blog is raw and sometimes unverified reporting straight from the road by teams. The event will issue a media release for any events requiring an official notification.

Note that links in blog entries are not maintained, so while a link may be verified to work on the day of publishing, this is not guaranteed beyond that day.

Monday, October 3, 2005

Leeming Sungroper: Monday October 3rd: home

I wake; the sky outside the scout hall window is overcast. I suspect I'll be noticing the weather for quite some time to come.

We breakfast and pack. We also have to get rid of unused food, but luckily there are some circus people next door, who will see our surplus go to good use.

We peel the signage off our rental vehicles. Some are magnetic stickers, which are easy: lift 'em off and slap 'em on the inside of the Sungroper trailer. Some, like the stripy metallic hazard tape around the "Warning: Solar Car Ahead" sign are a right bastard; luckily, we have plenty of student labour to apply to the problem.

We cram everything into the Sungroper trailer and the support trailer, and set off to the city for lunch. We've packed the radios, which turns out to be a mistake: it's _much_ harder to coordinate three vehicles without them. Most of us go for food, while the vehicle I'm in goes to pick up a student's bag. He left it in Coober Pedy, and we got the backpacker's to put it on a bus to Adelaide for us. But it's a public holiday today in Adelaide, so we get the run-around. Eventually, we pick the bag up from the bus company's suburban depot, and return to the city centre.

John and Rodd take the trailers to the shipping company. The rest of us wander around for a while, then rendezvous at the appointed time at the Torrens parade ground. Raedthuys are there, getting their car into a suitable state for shipping. I have a nice chat with their strategist.

We drive to the airport and return the rental vehicles. According to the sign on the side of the terminal building, today we'll be flying Qantas. The team swells as we meet up with various parents, teachers, etc. We check in. (Tip for aspiring terrorists: you don't need to present photo ID if you're with a group booking.)

We take off in the late afternoon, and chase the sunset into the west. The sun finally vanishes during our descent into Perth, but it is not so much the sun setting from us, as us setting from it: we descend towards the Earth, and the horizon moves up and obscures the sun.

As the captain gives his "welcome to Perth" message, he congratulates the Leeming High team on their achievement. All cheer.

I go to Peter's place for a debriefing. Craig is in town for this week only, and since Peter and Craig are the two originators of the Sungroper project, it's too good an opportunity to miss.

Then home.



-- Doug Burbidge