11.03pm, Tuesday 8th January, Shamrock Motel, Balranald, Western edge of the Hay Plain, New South Wales
Evening folks, it’s been a horror heatwave day again, with bush, scrub and grass fires burning across New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. At the moment we’re well south west of the danger areas, and the southerly cool change has taken the sting off the Hay plain. That will give us a nice cool trip across in the morning.
Then it’s north to West Wyalong, and on to Forbes, and finally to the town of Parkes – famous as the home of the huge radio telescope nicknamed “The Dish” – which according to urban legend, played a pivotal role in broadcasting the details of Neil Armstrong’s famous “one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” moment on The Moon.
So why are we heading for this part of country New South Wales?
Because 21 years ago, the town of Parkes starting hosting a week-long celebration to commemorate the birthday of Elvis Presley – on or around January 8. With any luck, we’ll be up to our ears in Elvis tribute artists, chocolate chip and peanut butter pancakes, and chrome laden hotrods!
But right now, it’s about getting this oven masquerading as a motel room cool enough to sleep in … see you when it’s a bit cooler in the morning
Here’s how dry it is between Moculta and Truro behind the Barossa