Black Dog Ride around Australia
Blog - Day 5
Mackay to Bowen for Lions morning tea
Bowen to Ayr for Lions Lunch
Ayr to Townsville
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Rest day dawned! No need for an early start for packing, repacking, tieing down, filling up. Some riders went sightseeing, some serviced bikes, some spent time in the laundry, including a WA rider who found himself accidently washing ladies unmentionables. Others meandered around town enjoying two legs after a hard 5 days on wheels.
Everywhere Black Dog Riders went, they were recognised. Donations were given, conversations were started, stories were told, and the question, "Are you with the Ride?" produced a proud grin for every rider. We had already achieved in Townsville what we had aimed for - awareness of depression and suicide prevention.
The Lions Club of Townsville held a sausage sizzle down at Bunnings, so a number of riders and crew headed down there to help out, engage the public, film a few minutes for our documentary crew following the ride, and speak to the media. For a few hours there we felt a little bit like superstars and basked in being able to enjoy each others company enuncumbered by itinerary and time limits....before reality kicked in and we had to head back to do our washing!
One of our washing duties wasn't our clothes. but our cars. Our awesome Holden Colorados, which had carried us brilliantly up the coast, looked like they'd traversed a few continents off road and they need a little exterior TLC before we headed inland. A local carwash donated his services free of charge for the cause and we even managed to wash Winston! Our car wash manager was unassuming and didn't want publicity but we are grateful nonethless.
A dinner at a local hotel finished off what was not quite a relaxing day but was a fulfilling one. Everyone knew Black Dog Riders, everyone welcomed us and our cause, everyone felt comfortable in telling us their stories. We have a long hard journey ahead of us and Townsville let us know we were on the right track.