ayers rock sunsets and skippy on toast; alice springs.
Does anyone eat kangaroos on toast?
Why is Alice Springs? asked the laid-
Bar owners in Melbourne
I told him that in the inland year of Australia we traveled half the way around the world and wanted to be at the heart of the action. \"Yeah?
He repeated, \"Why is Alice Springs ? \"
I think this is a good question.
But it took several days to figure out why.
We flew to Ayers Rock the next day.
Or Uluru, as the product Paul told me, it is now called its Aboriginal name.
We flew for four hours without anything.
No road, no house, no one.
Only the red earth inland.
To give you a sense of scale, a school is 500,000 square miles, twice the size of an ordinary school.
In fact, most parts of Europe may disappear inland. Ourluggage did.
But the ground staff at Uluru airport welcomed us with gifts.
Well, before our bag showed up, both the film crew and I were wearing itchy Qantas sleep suits.
What we need-
Giant Baby climbing suit at 110 degrees high temperature.
We stayed at our hotel.
Star Palace is called sail in the desert.
This is a nice hotel anywhere, but in fact every cup of coffee, bath towel and pint of milk has to be shipped in by truck thousands of miles away, this
In the evening, we had a perfect lobster and I realized that I might be further away from the sea than at any time in my life.
We carried our luggage and the perfect blue sky the next day.
The producer said rock climbing is offensive out of respect for the local Aborigine custom --
It is a place of religious significance for them.
When I suggested riding a mountain bike up the hill, Paul walked away, head of shakingis.
So instead, this is a brisk walk around the base, where there are also many ceremonial or religious sites.
You can visit with a local Aboriginal guide who will explain what some ancient paintings and rock formations mean.
Some are very secret and they will never reveal to outsiders.
Uluru is huge, incredibly steep, and scored in an amazing mode, which was caused by rain for thousands of years.
Just a century ago, it was easy to understand why there was no white eye on Uluru.
This is the farthest place you can get from the bright lights.
We travel by helicopter from the local airport, which is a great way to see the rocks and discover the occasional kangaroos.
Trapped in the desert like some stranded whales, you know why this rock, along with the Taj Mahal and the pyramids, is a must-see attraction.
After returning to the ground, I joined an Australian cyclist named Ashley on his famous Harley-Davidson tour.
The rider\'s leather and fierce heat don\'t sound like an attractive combination, but as the wind whizzes past you, it must be the most exciting way to enjoy the vast open space
As temperatures began to drop, it was time for us to experience the great Uluru for the last time.
A fleet of four.
We drove off to the sand dunes in the desert for a special sunset picnic.
Forget the sandy sandwich and the pork pie, we had champagne and bushtucker-
This is the kangaroo to toast you and me, and next is a huge buffet with camel meat, kangaroos and more kangaroos (
Skippytastes is a bit like steak because you ask, only chewier).
We watched the sun grow big and red, and at this special moment I began to lose myself --
Until the tap on my shoulder brought me back to Earth.
One of our guests was a Scottish policeman I met at the Lockerbie trial.
From Camp Sester to the heart of Australia
This is a very small world.
The next morning, when I saw Erica next to our truck, we were preparing to leave.
Our Aussie guy insisted it was small but for me it looked like it was coming out of Jurassic Park.
When he tried to pick it up, I jumped on the truck and locked all the doors.
All of a sudden, I think of Australia as one of the world\'s most powerful snakes and spiders.
Despite the hot weather, I made a mental note and stopped wearing shorts and started wearing thick jeans.
Driving inland can be a tedious experience.
We traveled for about six hours and saw only one dead camel and a few dusty pick --uptrucks.
The biggest excitement comes from a dusty gas station.
It is run by a grumpy boy who has a more grumpy, pregnant partner and looks as worrying as his sister.
He offered to show us the snake pit. We left.
The scene of the house ahead is a clue to the coming of civilization.
So what a surprise to find Alice Springs.
It was named after the wife of the director of Adelaide Bush Telegraph.
A woman who has never been to this townLucky her.
Alice Springs is not fun for Inverness.
In addition to the serious Old Timer Museum
Fake teeth, pension books, soup recipes, etc.
There is nothing to hold the traveler.
We did our best to visit the excellent desert park and watched the Kangaroos and various other wildlife.
How nice it was to visit them again later that evening at the authentic bush tucker restaurant --
Even chewier this time.
However, Alice Springs Airport provided the fastest escape route from the inland area, and we were happy for it the next morning.
Don\'t get me wrong, inland is a great place to see, but the harsh monotonous landscape, the hot environment and the huge distance make itin-a-
In the comfort of Melbourne bar, drink an ice beer and enjoy the best memories of your life.
I left a tip for the bar owner.
After all, he was right about Alice springser.
You can see Stephen\'s report on STV pasport, Scotland on Tuesday. I loved. .
Beautiful sunset at Ayres Rock, champagne and kangaroo meat I hate. . Alice Springs. . .