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Cycling the Karakoram | Pakistan Sailing the Atlantic Children of Tibet Cycling through a Himalayan winter | Tibet “FLUCCS”
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Opening Up

16 December 2009 (Australia) by Kendon Glass

Opening Up

Photo: Ronnie, Stephen and Dave culling Oysters in 'The Shed'

Fifteen days ago I cycled into a dead end town, end of the line, all passengers please vacate here. For weeks I had been heading south along vast expanses of beach on low tide. The tidal window helped to keep things interesting. Id cycled the beaches before, most memorably in North East Brazil. There I had an amazing encounter with the fishing people of a coastal village. It was similar to my current experience of Wooli, in that it too was a one road town, in and out. So it was not surprising when only after a few hours in this small Australian coastal village that the world began to open up like a big luscious oyster....  eeeeek, eeeeek!!

I had entertained the possibility of crossing the river at Wooli and continuing on down the coastline. Word was that it was very rocky with jutting headlands. When asking around town about the terrain I was referred to Ronnie at the Oyster Shed. There in the shed was Ronnie, Stephen, Dave and Niel having a good old time, casually culling a table of heaped oysters.

Within just a few minutes Ronnie had offered a lift across the river and armed me with a backyard insect repellent solution (one part methylated spirits, one part baby oil, one part Dettol). Meanwhile Steve (Viss) offered some water out of his rain tanks to fill my bottles. I remembered that in Tibet, bowls filled with water symbolised the offering of water for drinking and foot-washing, an ancient tradition that teaches how any guest should be received. The offer of water is a universal act of hospitality. I have experienced this expression of goodwill by people in every single country I have journeyed through. Little did I know that just a few hours later it would lead to King Prawn and salad sandwiches. Porridge and baked beans were taking the back seat today. I planned to leave the following day from Stephens, however divine providence chose otherwise. That night down at the Oyster Shed events were unfolding that would shape my destiny, at least for the next two weeks anyway.

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Photo: Back yard insect repellant courtesy of the lads at Wooli Oyster Supply

Opening Up

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