Chasing the Black-Footed Wallabies

        Driving to and then exploring Alice Springs is touristy but nice. I'm tempted to buy this thick oilskin trenchcoat some long-ago sailor designed out of torn sails; maybe I should to look like a cowboy for my move to Austin, Texas in a few months. Roughing it is OK with me, but so is gorging myself: lunch's salad bar's mostly salad but pleasantly stuffing.
        Black-footed wallabies are funky creatures that resemble half-pint kangaroos. Appropriately enough, they have black feet; their overall color scheme's a lot like a kangaroo. I spot one at Simpson's Gap after climbing slippery quartz along some really chilly water. It doesn't let me get anywhere near close, but it still makes the climb worth it. Or it doesn't: I climb back to find everybody looking at another one.
        The evening is stealing camping (they wanted $9 per person per night, they'll get maybe $20 total after 2 nights) and a good argument over wine: Erik and I debate how dick it was of me to leave a hometown bar at Thanksgiving early, saying I feel sorry for a lot of the people we went to high school with and didn't want to be around them. I argue that it's sad when there's a massive rift between what people have done / are doing and what they say they want to do, which was frequently manifested that night as people with much more money and time than me going "I really wish I could travel, or at least get out of this town." Erik counters that people don't have the resources / ability to do what I've done. A huge support for my argument walks up 3/4 into my liter of wine (we're sharing a 4-liter box, minus Lisman's lightweightedness): the plumber we met yesterday, who's certainly doing what he wants resources be damned, happens to be staying at the same place as us. The wine's hitting me as we bullshit with him and his wife, but I definitely wake up enough to laugh at a great compliment he pays me: "if I had a daughter your age, you're the kind of guy I'd keep her away from."

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