609km – Gowrie Park to Hobart
It’s a brave man who’ll show up for a bike ride with two people he’s never met before, willing to take on whatever comes his way. Meet Frank – just such a guy.
You’d think the cold breezes of Tasmania alone would have been enough for anyone from balmy Queensland to go running for the first plane home but Frank put up with the bracing weather and everything else these two Canadians could throw at him.
A 100km ‘day trip’ to Cradle Mountain? No problem. Want to go bush camping, Frank? Sure. Cycling into a headwind under rainy skies? Frank was game. Even when the days stretched into early evening and ended with impossibly steep hills, Frank just kept his legs spinning around without complaint – and he didn’t have the benefit of two year’s training beforehand!
Frank even found time between the climbing and dubious weather to teach us a few Aussie words. “Oh, they’re having a domestic,” we say now when we see a couple having a fight. And an easy day on the road is now a bludge of a ride. Not only that but the man cooks a mean wallaby curry (yes, really, we ate wallaby) and can be trusted to have the coffee going at 5am.
What a legend.
We tried to convince Frank to keep going with us but instead he insisted on going back to work (did we tire him out that quickly?) and seeing his family. He kept on talking about a soak in the bathtub. Must have been all those hills that finally brought on a case of aching muscles after 620km and 8 straight days of riding.
We understand but we were sad to seem him go. When we left Hobart for a trip to Bruny Island on Saturday morning, we felt the team was incomplete. Frank, come back! Team Wallaby misses you.
14th January 2009 at 3:02 pm #
Thank you muchly very nice of you to give a page to me i am misty take care my friends. Frank.
14th January 2009 at 3:17 pm #
I couldn’t agree more,
Frank is a living Legend.
He would be up early to make a Brew,
One the first to pull his tent down,
Eagerly waiting to hit the road,
A big hill to start with,
no time to warm up.
For the wind is getting stronger,
but no fear because Frank is getting stronger he is spinning at ease,
we take another breath and sweat
drips from us as we drop a gear,
to make it up,
we look forward to the descent,
at last we can freewheel,
we love the speed.
But wait it’s time for us to start over again because there’s another hill.
I had the honour to ride a couple of
days with this Legend and what fun it
was, too bad my holiday had to end.
14th January 2009 at 6:34 pm #
G’day there travellers.
That Frank sure sounds like a bonza bloke for you to ride with. I’ll bet he thought that Friedal was a cracker of a sheila and Andrew a good mate.
It is so nice to read your tales and made all the nicer by your including some good ol’ aussie vernacular. I think tourism Australia will need to thank you for the next influx of visitors.
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