Apologies for the delay on this one folks, but here is an update from our final 3 days of the Pilgrimage!

 

Day 10 (Tuesday) was a really relaxing and special day for us all. We had a shorter drive to Broken Hill so we were able to take our time a bit more, enjoying the sights and each others’ company. Once we arrived in Broken Hill we had a lot of time to kill so we had a refreshing 2 hour chill time at a playground with coffees in hand (both of which the leaders were very thankful for!) and amazing play equipment for those extra energetic people to have some fun!

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This was probably one of our favourite times on the trip back :)

We then made our way up to a lookout at the “Living Sculptures” and watched the amazing sunset…

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That night we had a special reflection time together where Jonno (one of our leaders) shared a story of a time in his life where he had to make some big decisions to make a change and challenged us to make some big decisions too. We were really encouraged and inspired!

Day 11 (Wednesday) was quite an “adventurous” day…. we had planned to go on a 30km detour to Mount Grenfell Historic site to see some Aboriginal rock art when both buses took a wrong turn and lost each other! In the meantime, one of the buses found themselves on what one might call an “off-road” track. Let us paint a picture for you… imagine a maze with many gates, large rocks, disappearing tracks and dry creek beds… To say the least, we had a few “obstacles” to overcome. The dry creek beds that cut through the track left gaping crevices, meaning that everybody had to get off the bus, gather large stones and tree branches and lay them across the track, to level it, so that we could drive the bus and trailer across.

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Building a road. Just one of the many experiences you too can have on the Pilgrimage To Uluru!

 To top this all off no one had any reception so we couldn’t do anything but hope the other bus was ok! Many people experienced the good old “bush toilet” for the first time too! We just kept telling them it was all “part of the plan”… but   on the inside the team were feeling more like this:
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Cool, calm and collected.

So… after what should have been a short 30 minute drive turned out to be approximately 1.5 hours, we finally found the site!

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Exhausted “Hooray!”

After a much shorter drive on to Cobar, we were finally reunited with the other bus. What an adventure! That night we had our final evening of reflection time around a nice warm fire and then went to bed, ready to rest up for our final day on the road…

Day 12 (Thursday). Our last day! There were certainly mixed emotions… By this point everyone was quite tired and ready for our own beds, but also sad that this would be our final chance to sardine into our tiny buses, attempt to do aerobics while remaining seated and hang out together in our little tribe.

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How so much energy still?

We stopped in Dubbo and got yummy baked goods for lunch and sat in a park to play our final game of mafia as a big group (can you tell we’re a bit obsessed?). We then continued our journey home, through the beautiful Blue Mountains. The sad faces started to come out….

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This is much more accurate…

Even from our bus drivers…

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…who really should be thankful that they made it at all.

….so we turned our frowns upside down with a bus disco! The music was pumping, the phone lights were flashing and the buses were jumping as we pulled into St Marys where we were greeted by parents and colleagues with soup and a sausage sizzle. It was a fun way to end an enormous and amazing journey! Here’s to the coming weeks and months where the rubber really hits the road… time to be the change!