The Heysen 39: Swarms

Thursday, October 13, 2016

I decided to take a rest day at Curnows Hut to be kind to my foot/because it’s so peaceful here/because I can. For most of the morning I basked in the sun on the picnic bench, ducking once into the hut when a giant swarm of bees rose from the trees and started buzzing around. I like bees – I don’t understand why humans insist on killing so many with neonics, but suspect that it’s related to insects’ inability to donate money to politicians or hire lobbyists – but I don’t like giant swarms of anything. You have kids? You love your kids? Now imagine a giant swarm of your kids. Terrifying, isn’t it? Especially if they all start demanding a new toy. I don’t know what the bees were interested in, but for all I know a joey kicked in their hive and blamed it on me, the little tart.

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Curnows Hut

In the afternoon, I was surprised by the arrival of three cyclists (I’m surprised by anyone I see on the Heysen). Curnows Hut is also a shelter for users of the Mawson Trail, a cycling route that shares some segments with the HT. The cyclists are friendly but I’m feeling judgy since one of them threw food into the bushes (should be an eighth deadly sin) and they have portable showers which they used with water from the rainwater tanks. The tanks had plenty of water from the recent rain, but the AZT firmly engrained certain behaviours in me, and one of those behaviours is not to use a precious limited water source for taking a shower with your portable shower when you’re staying primarily in pubs and had a shower yesterday and will be taking another tomorrow. On a related note, because I’ve seen many hikers use rainwater tanks for washing their socks, it also drives me nuts when hikers use limited water sources to wash their socks. People need that water for drinking! Drinking is more important than your socks! I was happy when one of the Larapinta tanks specified that the water was only for drinking, then soul-crushed when I saw people washing their clothes with it anyway.

The cyclists made the hut smoky by building a fire with green wood. It makes my nose run so I’m cowboy camping on the picnic bench tonight; extinguishing the fire isn’t an option since one of the cyclists forgot to pack a sleeping bag. Hello stars!

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