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Latest News... January, 2011

January 28th, 2011…

Campaigners Dominating!

So it's just about time to suit-up for Number 54- Scooter Across Australia, and with a crash-course in scooter mechanics this morning, Andy and myself are now officially capable of changing a tyre! 


Needless to say we're excited, but the other thing that is just as awesome is the progress of some of our campaigners. Now if you're not sure what I'm on about; our campaigners are a bunch of go-getters who have shared their own lists on our campaigner page. With people joining up every day, there are some amazing things out there and here is a taster of the latest updates:

Fitness 2428

Fitness 2428 is a personal training gym based in Forster (NSW) and I was lucky enough to meet the owners, Kerryann and Ferg, towards the end of last year when myself and Dave Cornthwaite got invited to talk at one of their fundraising evenings. At the time the gym had successfully run a campaign that encouraged a collective of locals to lose a total of 1 tonne in weight!


Since our talk, Kerryann had decided to again initiate a community project;  this time by starting a Fitness 2428 Campaigners Page. With 100 items on the list supplied by people throughout the community, the list truly is a reflection of a great bunch of people and we can't wait to see their progress!

Click HERE to see the list!

Luty Oz

Now Luty is one of newer campaigners but she has taken to her set of goals with amazing drive. The first item that she has ticked from list is Number 37- Buy a Stranger a Lottery Ticket. 


The story is an amazing one and involves helping a lady who was having a bad day. Luty, you're a legend. To read her story, click HERE.

Deccez

Deccez is a young kid who certainly has a sense of humor. I met young Deccez when again Dave and I did a talk at his school up in Maitland, just north of Sydney. On stage, whilst talking, we even helped Deccez tick an item from his list when he asked us to shave his head! It was a talk I'll never forget!


Deccez had ticked off heaps from his list, the most recent being Number 52- Chuck an All-Nighter. An interesting story to say the least, Deccez I think is just glad it's over!


Read his story HERE.

Ben Brown

Attacking one of his more physical goals, Ben recently update his page with news of a successful attempt at Number 20 from his list; complete a 10km run before turning 30 years old. 





Ben's preparation was definitely not text-book but as you'll read, it was perfect preparation for his next item. Click HERE for his story.


Now if of course you're interested in finding out how to become a campaigner, our easy 1-step process can be found here!


As for Andy and myself, well we're finalising last minute plans as we speak but thanks to an internet dongle, we'll be updating each day (hopefully) as we scooter from Perth to Melbourne!


100Things... What's on your list?


January 25th, 2011…

Number 54- Scooter Across Australia

With only 6 days before we embark on what promises to be one of the funniest items from the list, Andy Thomas and myself admittedly have left our research a little late. Nothing changes.


The journey itself will see us attempt to ride two 100cc SYM SYMBA scooters from Perth to Melbourne, some 3,279km across arid desert and scorching heats. A quick check of the temperature in the Nullabor Desert today and we found out that it peaked at a casual 44 degrees. Lucky it's only going go take us 2 days to cross it (note sarcasm).


The SYM SYMBA's are flash looking machines that we've been told will travel at an average speed of 80kph- blistering. Now bearing in mind that we have 8 days to complete this, we'll need to ride for around 6 hours a day, hopefully covering over 400km in this time.




Hollie, the owner of SYM, who was kind enough to lend us the 2 scooters for the trip rang me today and voiced her concerns about the dangers of 'road trains'. Apparently these things move at quite a pace and with no regard for other vehicles (especially 2 tiny scooters), she suggested that we should be weary. In fact I should also say a big thanks to the generous Hollie who has also provided us with some appropriate Armadillo scooter-clothing.


Equipped with a 2-man tent, plans thus far are to literally sleep on the side of the road when we get tired and take off when we wake-up. Holding all possession in two Ventura panniers strapped to the side of our beasts, we'll also be able to keep you updated thanks to some funky equipment provided to us by Next Byte in Sydney; not only have we got head-sets to communicate with each other but we've even got a satellite phone just in case Andy breaks a nail!


The only thing left to worry about as far as we can see it is actually planning a route, although to be honest, looking at a map of Australia all we have to do is drive in one direction until we hit the ocean, right? Like I said, a little more research wouldn't go astray.

Of course as with all 100Things challenges, we are trying to raise money for Camp Quality, who do amazing things in bringing happiness to kids with Cancer. Andy and I have accordingly set-up a specific donation page for this challenge and thanks to you we've already raised $495. Our aim is raise over $1000 (Andy just nudged me and told me $2000 in fact!) so if you want to support a great cause, as well as two idiots who will soon be sweating it out in the middle of nowhere, please click on the logo below! We appreciate anything and everything!



Other than that we're ready to rock and roll I think. The only other unknown is who gets to ride the black SYM and who gets the baby-blue one, but I think at this stage it's down to a paper-scissors-rock contest on the morning we leave.

OK, back to our 2-man team-meeting here.
100Things… What's on your list?

January 24th, 2011…

Number 65- Dad's Dream Car COMPLETE!


I think everyone's Dad has a car that reminds them of a special period of their life. In the same way that a certain song may transport you to a moment of happiness or a smell brings back memory of a good time; the mere thought of this car is enough to turn back the clocks for our Dads and put a big smile on their faces.

  
For my Dad, his car is the Jaguar E-Type.
 

As a kid I remember him talking about this sports car as if it were a person. Slender, classic, fast and elegant; it's a wonder my Mum didn't get jealous. The E-Type in short was my Dad's dream car.

As most kids do, I remember telling my Dad that when I grew up I would buy him his dream car as a present. He laughed and played along of course, and only now, 20 years on, having just researched these cars for the first time, can I see why he found this so funny; they cost an arm and a leg. With no way of buying one at this stage, my only option was to try and hire one for the day.

Luckily for me, the only E-Type in the whole of Australia that is hired out lives in a garage about 30 minutes from my house and so with a quick phone call last week I organized a surprise day out for my Dad in his childhood fantasy car. The car itself was a snow-white 1968 model, and laying eyes on it first hand it's no wonder this machine holds a special place in my Dad's heart.

A rocker at heart, my Dad has always been a lone wolf, a maverick, and with a direct tie to England, this beasty Jaguar convertible represents everything about him. If you asked my Dad yourself, he'd tell you that it the E-Type was loosely modeled on him (I'd say that the closest similarity was that they both have nothing up top).

My idea was simple; hide the car in his garage first thing in the morning before then knocking on his door and telling him I was taking him for a drive. Thankfully this is all went to plan and as he opened the garage door, I stood behind him awaiting his reaction. The result; silence, for about 5 minutes.

I wasn't sure if this was a good thing or not so I just stood there and watched as he circled the car, running his hand along the contoured bonnet as he went. Hilariously he later told me that the reason he remained speechless for so long was because he thought that I had actually bought him the car! Ooops. It was then I had to break to him the news that unfortunately we had to return it the same day. I felt terrible but as he jumped in the drivers seat and clutched the steering wheel for the first time, his smile made me feel better. 


My Dad, taking command in the driver's seat, then started up the loud 6 litre V12 engine and gestured me to get in. It was time to go driving.

This was the beginning of a day that I don't think either my Dad or I will ever forget. 


Now I'm not going to sit here and over-dramatize what was a simple drive around Sydney's Northern Beaches. There were no high-speed car chases, no river-jumping and certainly no drag-racing, but to sit there and see my Dad shift through gears whilst cruising around in a world of his own was just awesome; he was in his element. As he drove we spoke about everything including the first time he layed eyes on an E-Type back in 1964.


At one stage, a bloke driving past us in a classic MG Midget gave us some kind of secret wave that I guessed was used solely between classic car collectors, and of course my Dad waved back causing us both to laugh out loudly. When the MG was out of sight, my Dad turned to me and in said;

"Don't feel bad son, he's probably hiring that for the day as well"


Heading from Manly to Palm Beach on a beautiful day in Sydney's Northern Beaches, everything had turned out perfectly but in all honesty we could have been anywhere and it wouldn't have mattered; my Dad just kept on smiling.


A few days on now since the drive itself and I spoke to my Dad briefly this morning. He just rang to say thanks. He told me that whilst in that Jaguar he had one of the best days of his life. It reminded him not only of his youth but it also gave him and I a chance to catch up like we hadn't done in a long time. This I never thought about.


Like I said, it was a day that neither of us will forget.
Thanks to Sydney Classic Car Hire for helping to make this day happen.


100Things... What's on your list?

To see past blogs in January and beyond, click here.

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