Its been a cold night, as most nights in the Nullarbor usually are. I say good bye to my fellow campers and I am back on the highway, going west toward the town of Norseman, where you can either drive south toward Esperance or north toward the city of Kalgoorlie.
On my last night I have been bitten by what looks like a spider of some sort, as I am now showing a giant bruise on my left wrist, all black and blue, as if I had hit something with my arm with great force. I decide to seek some medical advice at the Norseman Hospital, where the doctor insists it is definitely a bruise stemming from some impact. Blood samples are taken to be sent off to Perth for examination to see if I have a "low platelet count", something to do with the ability of blood to coagulate. The insect bite only given a low probability.
The following morning while I am having my car serviced at Kalgoorlie, the Doctor calls me, to tell me my blood is in excellent shape, no platelet problems, in fact, the platelet count is high, my blood pressure 125 / 80 and it looks like I am in the best of health. I can't resist telling him that my original assumption about the spider bite was probably correct, to which he then agrees. Nothing to be done he tells me, just take some anti-inflammatories. Six days after the bite, the bruising is looking like getting less, still painful, but I only wake up twice during the night when the pain sets in for a minute or two, but things are certainly improving.
Salt pans along the way
From Kalgoorlie I drive west again tothe town of Southern Cross, where I spend the night. I follow the water supply pipes along the highway which have brought drinking water from near Perth to Kalgoorlie since 1903, when the (still ongoing) Gold boom in the Kalgoorlie area had started. The pipes are laid above ground, as its much easier to detect any leakage that way, they are painted either silver or white to help reflect the sun and the water won't arrive hot at Kalgoorlie. I stop for the night at Southern Cross.
This part of WA is called "The Wheatbelt", with (already harvested) wheat fields stretching from horizon to horizon. In low lying areas there are also salt marshes and some salt pans where nothing will grow, but on higher ground wheat is the only crop. Cattle and sheep only become visible as I get closer to the West Coast.
Salmon Gum Eucalypts
Along my course through the backroads of WA, which are always in excellent condition, even if they are only single-lane roadways, many so-called Salmon Gums grow along the road, their glistening tree trunks reflecting the morning light as if they were wet.
Seemingly 'never-ending' Highway
Another view of the Wheatbelt in WA
When I arrive at Geraldton I enjoy viewing the tourquiose colours of the Indian Ocean, so I park right by the sea while I wait for my friends Eckhard and Suki whom I have arranged to meet here. We spend 2 days at Geraldton before heading north to Kalbarrie.