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Day 23 “Phillip Island” (Friday 29th March 2013 – Good Friday)

I woke up to the sound of Mick coming into my room, he had text me twice but I hadn’t heard it so was now running late! It was about 10:30am so I quickly (or as quick as I go) got up and had a shower before packing a few clothes and bedding items with me ready for the lads weekend away at Phillip Island.

Peter and Avril were both up too and would be leaving not long after Mick and I but had let us have the big 4×4 Nissan Patrol and Eski (massive icebox for keeping beer cold) for the weekend. Now 11:30 Mick and I headed back to his place to wait for Paul and once he turned up we said goodbye to Alex and stated our journey down to Phillip Island.

On route we would be looking out for a place to stop and buy alcohol and fuel as we had been warned that Good Friday here brings a lot of places to a stop, (In fact Avril said more places are shut today than Christmas day) fuel wasn’t a problem as we found most garages to be open and we filled up the huge petrol tank for $103 (£67 ish). Open bottle shops (off licences to the English audience) were a little harder to come by but Mick spotted a drive through one about 45 minutes into the 1 hour 40 minute journey so we pulled up and picked up a slab of beer, bottle of vodka, coke and some pre-mixed bourbon and cokes, which cost $141 (£96 ish) it was gonna be a messy weekend! Mick then remembered to buy ice and we loaded up the Eski and carried on the journey.

When we arrived (or thought we had) we started to look around for a key before a man came out of the house to ask what we were doing, so we sheepishly walked away while Paul rang up to find out the actually address. (turns out it was 138 not the original 32 we had stopped at first) The house we were staying at belonged to Paul’s girlfriends, second cousins sister and hadn’t been lived in for a few months, this meant when we walked inside there were cobwebs everywhere and even after we look around the whole house I still found myself walking into web. When I saw the bedroom I would be staying in I instantly said I’d sleep on the sofa because it was full of webs and daddy long leg spiders as well as being quite an eerie room.

Soon after arriving and making a Mick making a phone call to check the go-karting place was open we left the to go and get something to eat on Phillip Island and although It was Good Friday the cafe just 10 mins down the road was open so we all had a burger, chips and a beer there(which I have to say tasted amazing!) then had a cheeky game of pool before heading back to the car. From there we decided to go and do the go-karting before it shut or we were to drunk/ hungover to do it another day.

We headed the wrong way at first but soon got to the track where motorbikes were speeding round and the go-kart area was just behind that. As we registered, paid (about $70 – about £46) and signed the disclaimer I started to feel anxious and even had to go for a nervous wee. Track side we watched the karts speed round before getting called through watch a safety video, we then walked through grabbed a hair net and helmet and lined up ready to be allocated a kart. Once seated and chair adjusted I really was feeling scared but after another quick marshal talk we were on our way… I took it slowly at first and drove at a sensible speed braking for every corner but gradually becoming more brave and fast at each lap, I was overtaken more than I can remember but with this karting its not a race as such but more about setting the fasted lap. We had paid for three 10 minute session and as this one ended we got back to the pit and made our way round to see the times and although I was 6th out of 14 on the quickest lap I had without fail got quicker with each of my 9 laps, Paul and Mick finished 3rd and 4th respectively. The 3 of us were then having a chat about how good it was and feeling a lot better about it now I agreed and couldn’t wait to get out there again… The boys even told me they had felt the restrictor kick in on some of the corners and I wanted to go fast enough to feel it this time. As we drove round this time I kept my foot to the floor most of the time and could feel the restrictor, the downside with this session was the fact there were 17 karts on the track so setting a good time was hard as the congestion could ruin a lap. (notice how I wanted to set a fast time now… Far more confident on the track and was doing the overtaking rather than being lapped) As the session ended I felt I had managed at least one good lap with nothing in my way and the times confirmed it, 2nd overall and set what turned out to be the best lap of the day between Paul, Mick and myself. Now into the third and last session I really went for it, hardly using the break and drifting round some corners. The adrenalin was pumping, I was absolutely loving it and this time I recognised Mick and Paul so was trying to keep up with them but spinning out (not for the first time today as swerving to overtake had caused me to spin in the second session, in fact during that session I even hit another kart as she breaked at a congested corned and I had no where to go apart from into her!) during a lap didn’t help that cause but then again they never got to far a head and were always in my sights. As our last session ended I was eager to see the time thinking I had done even better, however from 11 laps we had (same amount as our second session) Paul had toped this leaderboard, (but still not beaten my time in the second session) with me second and Mick third, this made for a great podium (the computer made one using the photos it had taken during the registration) and the other 6 people all noticed and comment about it.

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Paul, Me and then Mick on the podium!

After we had finished karting we headed back to the house and began drinking the booze from the Eski before booking a taxi to the nightlife in town. Now about 9pm we got our taxi to the bar come nightclub which cost $30 plus a tip and then had to pay to get into the bar which was another $10 each and the first round of drinks was then about $40… This was gonna be an expensive trip away. We then sat at a table and socialised while checking out the girls, Mick even got a couple of ladies to sit with us but they soon wanted to go and dance. As the evening when on and the expensive drinks were drunk we decided that it wasn’t the best bar/club but with nothing else to do we stuck it out for a little while longer. Later the 2 ladies came and found us later in the evening and Paul bought them a drink but once it was drunk they went off to dance again and we decided to call it a night. (the dancing here seemed more like a shoulder shuffle and most of the guys seemed a little up themselves) The two girls did say bye as we passed them on the way out but seemed more interested in other guys now. (maybe they just wanted free drinks all night) The three of us then headed up a hill toward the taxi rank and waited for about 10 mins before a taxi showed up (another sign it wasn’t really a big night out as not many taxi lined the streets [the first being that there was only really the one bar to go to]) but during this wait Mick and I were given a slice of pizza each from a random guy who didn’t want anymore… Being hungry and not eating since lunch Mick and I tucked in and thankful didn’t notice anything wrong with it. Once back at the house we had another drink each and watched TV for a bit before going to bed in the spider infested home. (bit of an overstatement but there were a few in there)

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