The origins may not be immediately apparent but the spirit of this event is clear as day. A journey to pay homage, to give thanks or to ask for the favour of the gods. A pilgrimage can be undertaken for many reasons but above all, it is a journey made with devotion. As an Indian, I’m no stranger to pilgrimages and back where these journeys are regular occurrences for millions of people, it is said that the harder your journey, the more merit you attain from it.
Well, I didn’t do it as tough as the people who measure the distance of their pilgrimage journey with the length of their bodies, prostrating themselves at every step of a thousand mile journey.
Nor did I join the largest pilgrimage in the world where a 100 million people converge from all parts of the world to take a dip in a river that is holy to them, to rid themselves of sin and request benevolence from the gods.
Sure, I didn’t do it very tough but it was still very much a pilgrimage for me and in keeping with the spirit, I wanted to ensure I didn’t do it too easy! And even if I did lose my way amongst all the debauchery for a bit, the ride home in freezing rain, sans faggy fairings, screens and heated accessories certainly put the suffering back into the journey and would surely have gained me some merit! That fucken TVKraut would’ve taken the most merit out of the trip though, riding back to Melbourne without wets of any kind! He gets it.
Of course, it was not all sermons and derision, there was some downright bizzare stuff. At one point I shouted across the campfire to Res, “Oi RES! Rape, fucken!” 5 seconds of stunned silence later I followed it up with, “Cunt!” I still can’t remember what the fuck I was trying to say but I’m sure it made perfect sense at the time.
The non-camping fags had steadily wobbled off on their steeds with varying degrees of competence. The worst being Curse who later recounted his 15 minutes of paranoia riding at 30 kilometres an hour in 6th gear from the campsite to the hotel convinced that the cops were chasing him and had sabotaged his bike, which was why it was jerking so much. While Ross got on the gas thinking a monster was running behind him, appearing as a soft red glow in his mirrors (which he later realized, was his own tail light).
There were many such hilarious stories, too many to recount.
Saturday night was a consciously quiet one for me as I gently encouraged others to take centre stage and provide the nightly entertainment. No-one really stepped up though Daz was well on his way when he non-camp-fagged himself away. Bubba was also going the full Bubba when he reeled it in and failed to take the night to its logical conclusion (in the gutter).
It was fucken great to catch up with so many people I haven’t seen for much too long.
And now I’m back feeling cleansed and recharged, smug in the knowledge that I’m part of something special, something real and something worth journeying for.