Archive | April, 2011

Beer, Bikes & Bands

30 Apr

A big thank you to Belinda for the art work.

Also Elisha and of course Mandy for all the organising (and their team of little helpers – so many people to thank), they are doing an amazing job! So much time and effort has gone into this (I can’t take any credit for this, it’s all girl power here folks). Mark it in your calendar if you’re in Melbourne, and remember we are still looking for donations of items for the silent auction.

PS http://www.beerbikesandbands.com will be up and running soon.

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$5000 donation

23 Apr

Howdy folks,

Great news, Coca Cola USA has donated $5000! Yip, that’s $5000 that will be donated directly to BEN, Nambia. And that’s great news as it means BEN, Namibia will now have enough money to give our project the green light.

A big thank you to everyone who has donated. $9451.95 out of the $12,000 target has been raised so far for Bicycles For Humanity (our Melbourne based charity), this money going towards getting the sea container full of old bikes from Melbourne to Africa. And Coca Cola’s $5000 has been donated to BEN, Namibia (the charity on the ground in Africa)  to help with the implementation of the container.

If you would like to donate and help us reach the $12,000 target, then head to my fundraising site.

In a coming post I will fill you in on our container destination and therefore the place where I will be celebrating my 30th birthday and the culmination of my goal on the 11/11/11.

Also as I mentioned previously we will be holding our BEERS, BIKES and BANDS fundraising gig in Melbourne on the 29th of May at the Workers Club on Brunswick st.  We are looking for donation of items for our Silent Auction from companies that our passionate about our cause.

Big shout out to our event sponsor Little Creatures Brewery. If your company is interested in offering something for our silent auction please contact us at beerbikesandbands@gmail.com.

Once again, a big thank you to everyone who has donated and everyone that is helping make this happen.

Bananas, bananas, bananas

20 Apr

Right now, what’s the first word that comes into your mind that starts with the letter B?

I’m sure there were a few males out there that had beer or boobs come to mind, but the vast majority of you probably thought BANANA.

Well, for me the word would be BIKE. This year it seems as though I’m eating, breathing and crapping bikes.

If I was to describe my life at the moment, I would say it’s one big bike and I’m riding it – wow, how very creative. To help explain the cheesy start to this paragraph, and to help explain why my blog posts of late are as regular as a constipated chimpanzees bowel motions, I will let the photo’s do the talking.

At the start of the year I quit my mining job in Tasmania to try and get work in a bike shop, and to be based in Melbourne for the countdown to the Final Continent Expedition departure. For the last couple of months I have been working 4 days a week at a local bike shop. I’m basically the shop bitch, I’m like the eager teenage work experience kid. In the shop I’m at the bottom of the bike mechanical hierarchy, I serve customers, build the new bikes up, do all the punctures, and I have been getting pretty good at emptying the rubbish bin. It’s great to be surrounded by bike enthusiasts and like the sponge I am I have been soaking up all the knowledge I can get my hands on – I never knew bikes were such complicated things.

I have been attending a 4 month bike mechanic course 1 night a week at the local TAFE (polytech). With working at the bike shop and taking this course I hope it arms me with the skills to keep our touring bikes rolling whilst in Africa and to give me the required skills to help in training the locals that will be working in the sea container bike work shop. Which by the why we have found out the destination of the container, I will do a blog on that after Easter.

Most normal people in their living room have a TV or a mantel piece, but our living room there is a bike mechanic tool set and a bike work stand. And yes folks, that is my touring bike in the stand, it arrived last week. And yes that is Mandy’s bike frame and wheels in the background; we are still waiting for all the componentry to arrive for hers. Hopefully it arrives in the next couple of days as we are planning a little Easter cycle trip.

Living in Melbourne a bike friendly city has been the perfect training for Africa. I don’t own a car and don’t use public transport, I just ride my bike everywhere, to the park, to the pub, to work. I don’ t miss having to wait in traffic, I don’t miss spending money on petrol, I don’t miss waiting for public transport, I don’t miss wondering if that ‘clunk, clunk’ sound in my car is going to cost me money, and I love not having to think about sober driving or finding a parking space in town. I would be lying if I said I missed having a car when it was pissing down with rain and freezing cold though.

Then there is the Sunday every now and then spent taking pedals off bikes, turning around handle bars around and packing them into the Africa bound sea container with the Bicycles for Humanity crew.

Looking at all this above I find it rather funny as before I had set myself this little Africa cycle challenge, I had never thought about bikes all that much, a bike was a bike, where as now a bike is either a mountain bike, a tourer, a fixie, a hybrid, a flat bar road bike, a single speed. I think that’s the beauty of having little goals, you end up exploring new things in your effort to reach your goal. I suppose my Africa cycle is just another part to my bigger goal that is working the world. Definitely something that has consumed me, like alcohol to an alcoholic, or bananas to a monkey………………………….ummm ok before I make anymore banana analogies, I’m calling this a post.

PS If you are planning a trip to Melbourne in the near future, you should coincide it with our Sunday fun day fundraising event, BEER, BIKES and BANDS, Sunday 29th May at the Workers Club on Brunswick Street in Melbourne’s funky Fitzroy area. We have just had Little Creatures brewery jump onboard as the event sponsor! More details to come.

Another kiwi celebrating his 30th birthday in Africa

18 Apr

The other day I got an email from a fellow kiwi by the name of Chris Flack who will be spending his 30th birthday on the roof of Africa, Mt Kilmanjaro. I thought Chris’s email was more than worthy of a mention to shed some light on what he is doing for his home city of Christchurch. Check out his email below.

I’ve just started a fundrasier for the NZ earthquake appeal. http://www.kilimanjaronz.com (looks like we’re both using the same template).  We’ll be climbing Mt Kilimanjrao in August with the aim of raising £5985 (the height of kili in metres) for the chch earthquake appeal – anyway i thought if you’re in the country you might want to join us on the hike

Unfortunately money and time won’t allow us to be joining Chris on his expedition as we will be pedalling our little butts off trying to get to our destination in time to welcome the sea container.

I wish Chris and his team the best of luck on their endeavour. And if you at home are wanting to join Chris’s Kilimanjaro expedition then go check out his web site www.kilimanjaronz.com, he is looking for 12 team members. Who knows, after climbing Kili you could come and visit Mandy and I at the sea container.

Check out this Sunday Star Times article on what Chris is doing.