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The Tooth, the Battery and the Bungle Bungle

While Kununurra was a pleasant little place, Thorsten and I were madly keen to get out of town and visit the Purnululu National Park which is home to the Bungle Bungle, an amazing sandstone formation. But nothing panned out as planned…

The four-hour drive to Purnululu started on a lonely highway
and ended in a dusty, rough gravel road that wound its way through river crossings and steep hills.

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“No worries”, we thought when we arrived at dusk and
stopped to pay our camping fee. This was when the engine didn’t want to start anymore and it turned out the battery was beyond repair.

After much trying and debating the park’s ranger pulled us
into his station for the night. He painted a picture of the next day that involved us phoning a garage in Kununurra where we’d order a new battery that would then be helicoptered into the national park and delivered to us by another helpful
soul. We mused that at least the battery will have had a beautiful scenic flight and suppressed any thoughts of how much this adventure will cost and how long it will take.

It may have been the combination of corrugations sending its
vibrations through my body all day and a couple of very cold nights that made feel my tooth starting to tingle. I’m not prone to hypochondria, but the nightmare of being stuck in the middle of nowhere for a week or perhaps longer with a toothache, running out of painkillers and then having to have the tooth pulled didn’t let me sleep much.

The good thing about being stuck in a national park is that
Rangers are used to getting people back on the road. The next morning a team of two very determined Rangers decided it would be a lot easier to jump-start the car so that we could drive back to town and sort ourselves out. For some reason
jump starting was successful (it hadn’t been the night before) and we made the four-hour journey back to Kununurra – of course, without having seen any of the marvels of the sandstone range.

After the dentist in town assured me that my tooth is
perfectly fine and may only tingle because of a sinus infection that’s pushing on the nerve I was relieved. Replacing the battery was equally pain free and so a couple of days later we travelled the same road to Purnululu once again.

Yes, the multiple travels were absolutely worth it and given
that the range was deposited over 360 million years ago our little detour that cost us a one week delay seems hardly any time in comparison. It certainly made us appreciate the helpful nature of others (and the power of flossing) – thanks again!

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