Reds and Oranges

Last night I had my first fructose dream. I was being chased by a giant orange with a big ‘F’ on it. Was it seeking revenge? Does it feel demonized? I tried to talk to it but couldn’t find its ears. I wanted to say that in moderation you are great, you are most welcome but you’ve kind of got a bit big now, you’re like a big clumsy fruit beast in a Waterford crystal display home. You’re doing some damage mate and need to chill out. Sadly, just as we had started to connect without words, a horrible alarm sounded and we were ripped from our citrus arbitration. 

 

You know those mornings when the alarm is like some kind of digital water torture. The snooze button is just another drip on the forehead and you never quite sleep deeply enough because you know that piercing sound is imminent.  Today was that day. Not even the thought of a hit of Sultana Bran and yoghurt (10) could artificially lift my spirits. What did get me springing from the red dusty sheets though was our guide for the trip, and aboriginal health crusader, asking if we wanted to return to Alice Springs via the back road past Uluru (or ‘Ayer’s Rock’ for those who prefer the more clinically scientific and romantically barren white man’s version. By the way, he ‘discovered’ a magical place used for 40,000 years by an ancient culture).

It was by far the best drive I have ever been on. We are travelling with a guide and so have special passes to be on the lands. This road is not for tourists and it shows Uluru from an angle rarely seen. The DOP (director of photography) and I were humbled. This trip has been a gift already but this was like getting a bonus present just before bed on Christmas day, 15 hours after the paper ripping ceremonies. There was awe and stunned revery in the car. All I could do was rip the top off an ice cold Powerade and muscle down 8 teaspoons of clinically proven performance enhancer.

We stopped at the tourism mecca near the site and I navigated my way through a melting pot of international amateur photographers and ordered a chai latte ( 6 teaspoons) to eat with my chicken sandwich made with love by the DOP/caterer at home.

We then hit the road and began the final stages of our 1700 kilometre round trip in 3 days. I passed the time with 2 Carmen’s muesli bars (3 teaspoons) and a Nippy’s ‘Unsweetened Orange Juice’ with 8 teaspoons. I hate to think about the ‘sweetened’ version. Can teeth actually just fall out of your mouth on their own?  I also had a Sarah Lee blueberry muffin which I had accidentally forgotten on the dashboard. The baking outback Aussie sun did its microwaving trick and it was actually quite delicious, but I hadn’t eaten for 2 hours (9 teaspoons).

 

We rolled into town and met some more great crusaders, had some terrific chats and then went to the unfortunately named ‘Stumps’ for dinner. I had a schnitzel and a small glass of orangey cordial stuff (4 teaspoons).

Tomorrow we hit the dialysis centers to visit some aboriginal people who have to come in regularly from the communities for treatment (dialysis is the process of removing and cleaning blood for those who have suffered from kidney failure).  This town only has 25,000 people and there are 3 dialysis centres that are overflowing, so much so that families are broken up because they have to head to Adelaide for treatment. That alone should be ringing alarm bells. Alarms that wake up beautiful, generous people from a big orange fructose nightmare.

27 gone and 40 more.

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Creating a green screen special effect next to a place of phenomenal natural beauty