I pulled out my map and surveyed the route one more time. I’d be slipping through the manhole at North-South Way, go through the main sewer pipes for about a kilometre, before a hard turn east until I reached the manhole outside of Billy’s house. The stupid grounding my parents had given me wasn’t going to stop me from seeing my best friend all summer holidays. I wasn’t worried about their friends and neighbours (or spies, as I thought of them) on the lookout all throughout Brighton. Blocked drain clearing would keep dad busy all day, and mum was at work. As long as I timed it well, nobody would realise I was gone.
As expected, I got to the manhole without issue, but had to spend a good few minutes lifting it up; it was much heavier than expected. Finally, when I got it up, I climbed down the ladder and into the drain. The water was pretty low, and there was no real risk of rain, thankfully. Turning on my torch, I took another look at the map and headed off. Soon enough, I’d be at Billy’s and we could play that new ‘Shout of Commitment’ video game. Along the way, I gave all of the pipes leading into the tunnel a quick glance, shocked at how badly they needed to be cleaned. How does somebody get drain cleaning in Melbourne anyway? I tried to purge the images of them as I walked.
After about an hour I arrived at the manhole just near Billy’s house, assuming I hadn’t taken a wrong turn somewhere. I put the torch away and climbed the ladder, pushing the manhole lid up onto the road. Just across the street was my destination, looking nice and clean. Billy’s parents weren’t home, so I could go in easily and have a shower to get clean. I’d made good time and could be there for a few hours if I was lucky. I smiled to myself. My plan had worked. I’d be using the sewer highway more often from now on.