The Arctan team had stayed at a house in the Darwin suburbs, so I really hadn’t seen the central Darwin city much at all. Though where we are staying this cycle is not near the city either, my drive to see the city was stronger and I found a semi-convenient public transportation route that would take us to the city. Cori, Ben, Hayden, and I (4/5 of the mech team) were all staying in the same cabin, and we set off together to navigate Darwin public transportation and get to The Promised Land of Darwin.
Darwin’s public transportation system seems to be less organized than the one in Adelaide and, on top of that, Google Maps’ information on it is somewhat inaccurate. Due to the latter issue, we missed the bus and had to wait for the next one. It wasn’t so bad though, since we weren’t in a huge rush and we eventually made it.
We wandered around the city shops for awhile. I bought a dress to wear that day because I didn’t have any clean tank tops or non-exercise shorts, and a dress is both a top and a bottom – bang for your buck. Hayden and I split off from Cori and Ben and went to Crocosaurus Cove, an expensive touristy place in the city where you can see saltwater crocodiles. I guess I’ve been getting a lot of FOMO (fear of missing out) lately, what with the whole Uluru thing, and I really felt like I needed to see the crocodiles. My mentality was that saltwater crocodiles were the only thing special about Darwin, except for maybe the box jellyfish in the ocean. Well, I saw the crocodiles.
It was pretty okay. No FOMO here anymore. After the crocodiles, I dragged Hayden to get another Thai massage. It was only a few minutes’ walk from Crocosaurus Cove! I thought it was GREAT but Hayden likened it to the “plucking of guitar strings,” which my dad had apparently once said to describe a massage. Oh well. It was cheap.
Hayden and I have ascertained that the best food available in Australia is in fact Asian food, so we went to a Banh Mi place. It was okay. They were out of chicken so we got the pork. Should have asked for beef. I’d brought a couple Vodka Cruisers and Hayden had brought a couple beers for our day off, but Hayden had neglected to bring a bottle opener, so we both partook in my twist-off Vodka Cruisers. It was a good time.
Being noobs to the Darwin area, we walked 30 minutes to the farthest possible beach that we could find. We only got lost once and had to ask a nearby casino for directions. But we made it! It was relaxing once we got there, but we only had an hour before we had to head back to the track. I killed a really big flying insect with a book.
Boy, was it an adventure to get back. The public transportation thing was not easy from the beach and a lot of walking and chasing after buses was involved. No one was having fun. But after a long, sweaty journey, Hayden and I arrived back at the holiday park. From there, everyone took cars to the track for team meeting.
Mechanical team unfortunately had to fix something that had been broken during the day in our absence. The team had some other last minute things to make sure we’d pass static scrutineering the next day, so that was also happening.
The next day was likely to be stressful. (I say this looking back, knowing that in fact it was.)