Sunday, February 21, 2010

A pretty quiet Sunday evening

Today has been a welcome day of relaxation and sleep after a really busy start to the term. It's the first exeat and time is flying really quickly! Not long 'til I'm home now! (In relative terms).

Temperatures are starting to cool down at the moment, a welcome relief both for pre-season rugby and the day before I head off on Year 6 camp tomorrow morning!

It should be a busy couple of days, with kayaking, raft building and general activities going on. I'm there to help out, and hopefully join in a bit!

I know I still need to give you the low-down on all that happened in my little trip from Sydney to Cairns, but there is so much to tell, I really need a good while to do it, and given that I have to pack tonight, it might have to wait until next weekend. However, if I get a chance tonight I will update my blog again.

I hope this recent activity is making up for an awful lot of inactivity between New Year's and the beginning of February and you're enjoying what I am putting up! I'll let you know how camp goes when I get back!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A quick update from Adelaide

I hope this doesn't confuse anyone too much, but I'm afraid I don't have time to do the second and third phase of my trip, just now.

I will tomorrow though.

For now, I have to get ready for pre-season rugby training at Old Collegians. It seems rather surreal that I was blogging to you at the beginning of this year about playing rugby and now it is starting up again; I guess this highlights the amount of time I have been here!

Once again, thank you all for your thoughts and Birthday/Christmas/New Year wishes. I trust you are all having a great start to 2010.

Thank you also for being so interested (those of you that are) in what I am doing!

More coming soon.

Cheers for now.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Number Crunching

37 days.

4,334 km.

Four state capitals.

One pair of sunglasses.

One phone.

A couple of t-shirts.

And I survived! I managed to travel this epic distance, on my own, sometimes with very little money, and survive. I can say it now because it's over: I didn't think when I set off that I would! I have met so many amazing people and, honestly, I think it will be this (and the surfing) more than the places I have been and things I have seen that I will remember.

Having said that... here are some thoughts on what I thought of where I went and what I did. (Did you really think I wouldn't have a good waffle?)

I left Adelaide at around 10 o'clock on 14th December. About half way through the ten hour journey to Melbourne (around 3 am) I realised the enormity of what I was doing! It had all seemed like a lovely idea and all of a sudden here I was! I arrived at Melbourne at something like half six in the morning and traipsed around with about 27kg of luggage, all the way "up" Melbourne to a hostel only to find it full! So I settled for All Nations backpackers. It's a huge place, in the centre of Melbourne. Despite a second night (I was persuaded to stay longer by some of my roomies) with no air con and about a 38 degree temperature, with atrocious sunburn, I managed to see lots of Melbourne. We went to St. Kilda and did lots of things, including track down a missing phone from the night before!

After Melbourne I headed up to Mittagong on the bus on the 17th to stay with the Riley's in Nowra for about four or five days. This was amazing, we pretty much surfed everyday and basically just chilled out at the beach-house and cooked pizza's the rest of the time!

I then headed to Sydney on the 23rd and arrived in my hostel at Bondi Beach around 9 in the evening, to be greeted by scenes of mass revelry and offered a ticket to a booze cruise the next day... something I immediately accepted. An early surf the next morning, following some awesome free cocktails that night, was certainly enough to beat the crowds, though Bondi, the fickle beach it is, didn't quite work. We spent that day preparing for Christmas Dinner the next day (I chopped thousands of onions) and then left around 5 for Darling Harbour. An array of costumes was on display, and I can safely say the wetsuit and reindeer antlers I went for, in the middle of the Australian Summer was not the best! An evening cruise round the harbour with the Opera House and Bridge lit up was truly epic. And the count-down to Christmas is something I don't think I'll forget very easily!

After not much sleep the festivities started pretty early. A morning dip was enough to get most people ready for the day, but I am pretty sure some people got no sleep at all! The weather was a bit of a let down, but did provide some massive swell in the afternoon, and the temperature of water meant that we were in a pretty good state!

This was all after an incredible Christmas lunch of roast chicken and salad, with about 120 people sat outside at long tables. Much fun was had by all!

Boxing Day saw a rather unsuccessful, but very enjoyable trip to the races and I was then persuaded to change my bus to the evening the next day so we could do it all again that night... On Sunday we caught the bus into town, hopped on the very to Manly, dropped Candy's stuff off at her next hostel and had (well, only me) another surf before a lovely seafood meal that night. Then it was back to the hostel, pick up my bags, say my goodbyes and back into the bus station.

It was an unbelievable Christmas, I met some incredible people and it was made all the more special for that. This is one I will not forget for a very, very long time...

From Sydney, it was up to Woodburn to begin my surf camp...

Many, many apologies to all

Hello again,

I realise I promised you all a blog summarising my trip when I got back, and I had every intention of doing so. Only I got abducted by my friends and was so tired when I was near my computer that I was in bed. And then term started and, well now it's now.

My trip truly was amazing. To use a fantastic old cliche; a genuine once in a lifetime experience. I must thank all of you who sent me gifts, yuletide wishes, or just simply thoughts over the Christmas break too. There really is way too much to tell you all (I completely missed out a week when I was telling my flatmate) but I will give it my best shot. It may also be a number of blog postings!