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.

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Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Michigan: Route Survey - Day 1

Arrive in Melbourne ~9:45 AM local time. Clear customs with no troubles. Mike and I grab a cab to Holden headquarters, where we pick up our vehicle - a light blue, 6 cylinder, AWD, 7 seat Adventura wagon. After getting a crash course in Australian driving (stay on the left, mates), we head out, or at least try, as apparently I managed to get the parking brake stuck. Mike puts his weight into it and we're off. Immediately embarrass myself by activating the windshield wipers rather than the turn indicator (the levers are reversed). Mike takes over driving, with no further incidents sans a couple of clipped curbs (that whole wrong side of the car thing again). Arrive back at airport. Stack an absurd number of duffel bags onto the roof rack, load up and head out. Take a wrong turn. Arrive back at airport. Drive off toward the freight forwarder to receive our weather gear that was shipped via air freight. Road listed in Google directions does not exist. Turn around. Arrive back at airport. Ask for directions at gas station. No worries mate, head out towards freight forwarder. Determine that Google directions hopelessly out of date.

Finally arrive at freight forwarder, drop off customs documents. Will return to pick up gear in morning once it clears customs. Visit Big W (Wal-Mart, down here), buy an atlas. Drive to downtown Melbourne and make a short visit to OmniStar, who have generously agreed to loan us 2 high-accuracy GPS units for our survey. Arrive at the hostel, the Pint on Punt, at around 6 PM. Enjoy $10 steak night at the pub on the first floor, then promptly fall asleep at 8:30 PM.

--Garrick Williams