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With ex-TC Ita hanging about some rain was always on the cards but a hardy group of eleven NG men and women and five visitors rolled into the Woolies car park at Albany Creek ready to pit themselves against the elements.

Ride leader Rob (Eighty-Six) welcomed everyone then outlined the route he intended to take to the

Ginger Factory for smoko before going on to Tea Gardens. It was fairly straightforward – onto and up

the highway, turn off at Steve Irwin Way and follow your nose to Yandina. So away we went with Big Bill Van Kesteren as tail-end-charlie.

Almost immediately however the ride was split in half by traffic lights and the rear group completely lost touch with the front group.Hey, no problem, we corner-mark and if a roundabout isn’t marked we go

straight ahead. Sweeet. Except there was a problem - the rider who was by default now “leading” the rear group was Car 54 and a decision point was looming! South Pine Road curves right, Old North Road curves (some might say “branches”) left. No markers, no time, which way?? LEFT.

Is this correct? Half a dozen bikes have followed, none are waving, honking or flashing their lights –

probably okay. Anywhere to pull over and check? No, not safely. Push on. And so it was some time and several kilometres later that Mr Armanelli pulled alongside Car 54 and announced that we needed to turn around.

Long story short, we reconnected with the front half of the ride at the Steve Irwin Way turnoff where they had been waiting “patiently” for about 15 minutes or so. Car 54 copped the usual road-side pasting then we rode into the Ginger Factory in light rain for smoko and the opportunity to heap more abuse on Car 54.

After smoko with the weather radar showing rain all over the place Tea Gardens was abandoned and

the majority of the group followed Eighty-Six onto the highway and home. At last report Car 54 made it safely.

Ride safe and keep the black stuff on the bitumen!

Larry the Wonder Llama

Author’s Note:

Many have asked me about this mysterious Car 54. Who is he?What does it mean? Who called him that? Why? Here at last all is revealed.


His name is unimportant and he lives in the pipe in the downstairs water-closet.


An early ‘60s, Police Sitcom starring Fred Gwynne and Al Lewis (who later played Herman Munster and Grandpa Sam Dracula

in the TV series “The Munsters”), was called, “Car 54 Where Are You?” It also had a very catchy theme tune that anyone who watched the show will remember until dementia sets in – which means Twiggy’s forgotten it.


It was our own Eighty-Six, Rob Watson, who drew on his storehouse of useless knowledge to bestow what he saw as a very fitting name on Car 54. It stuck and is occasionally reinforced by events such as that which occurred today.


The characters in the TV show were often disoriented,confused and / or lost. Eighty-Six claimed to have witnessed events such as missed turns, missed signals and wrong directions that convinced him the title was appropriate. Others agreed.

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