Grey skies and uncomfortable drizzle anointed the first day of the Big Lift 2012. As the crew and team arrived at UTS at some ungodly hour, we realised that after months of work, it was time to set of on the third and largest Big Lift. We'd love to give a great big "yeah buddy!" to everyone for arriving on time and making it a super-easy start to the trip.
As the White Bus pulled away to their first stop of Gulgong, the Blue Bus bus of 28 people (27 students and out amazing driver Rob) launched into some speed-dating as soon as we were on the freeway to Newcastle. The hustle and bustle lasted for almost an hour, with the barriers between everyone melting away without problems.
But our smooth run was not to last. As we pulled into Newcastle for a lunch stop, Rob noticed that one of the rear tyres was looking a little flat. As we all wandered off to lunch he investigated further and discovered an enormous bolt stuck into the tyre (we're blaming the White Bus for sabotaging us). The team returned from lunch to see a man with an air compressor and industrial sealant jumping up and down on an enormous tyre, evidently attempted to fix it.After a short waterfront game of charades, we were informed that we were ready to roll.
Jumping back on board, the team immediately drifted into a post-lunch siesta and before they knew it were arriving at the PCYC to the dulcet tones of "Call Me Maybe" by Carly Rae Jepsen. We were greeted by Debbie, moved our stuff inside. The Team was sent off to seek out local monuments and bring back creative photos, while the Crew stayed back to prepare dinner for the first night of TBL2012. The Crew also took a quick tour of some of the work that we did at the PCYC last year, including the internal painting and the concrete laying outside.
A few activities to break the ice (basically the freezing air in Muswellbrook) followed dinner, finishing off what was certainly the least demanding day of the Big Lift. However, over the coming days an early night will be appreciated by all involved as the digging, painting, lifting and other forms of physical exertion take their toll.
Either way though, the Big Lift is off to an amazing start. The Blue Bus has an amazing group of people on board and we can't wait to spend the rest of the week getting to know each other and do some great stuff for a variety of rural communities.