Traverse 06 - Page 37

sandstone rock, that looks very red at sunrise and sunset. It is also an im- portant feature of the creation accord- ing to the Anangu, traditional owners of the region. Walking up Uluru is now officially discouraged. With so few people in the outback I found that many welcomed the op- portunity of conversation. One lady who I met briefly with a smile at a fuel station, later stopped down the road in a lay-by. When explaining to each other why we were out here, she told me that after a long and happy mar- riage her husband passed away. She described it as “very inconvenient of him”. We both cried together. At another stop I met a small group who were on an overland trip by bus from London to Sydney. There were two Chelsea Football Club supporters amongst them! I also met a newly ar- rived young lady from Maryland, USA, who had just left home to travel Aus- tralia and ended up in Coober Pedy. This is Australia’s Opal mining town, but also the most remote and bizarre location on my route. Her self-confi- TRAVERSE 37