Here we are in Sydney.
We’ve planned to be here for New Years Eve since we began planning our trip.
We’ve left some great friends behind in Melbourne. We’re glad we could be with you for the party before New Years Eve, but know that we’re here – we can’t wait.
Here is our view for the upcoming fieworks celebration. Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House are at our feet. It seems the world is before us.
It will be amazing.
Thank you Michelle – without you this wouldn’t be possible.
Happy New Year everyone.
Well, not quite but man, dingoes are not to be messed with–they are cunning and not afraid of humans. And, Fraser Island has heaps of them–isn’t that why you go there?
I wasn’t sure what to think about Fraser Island except that it was a pretty cool place. There are two types of tours you can take on the island–guided, where you are in a big 4 wheel drive bus and the driver takes care of your every need (i.e. food, transport and lodging) or self drive where you are given a land rover and paired up with 6 to 8 other people and the group is responsible for the food, getting around and camping. Imagine going to the grocery store with people from 4 different countries trying to shop for 3 days worth of meals in only 40 minutes because the ferry is going to leave. It was a bit comical but we got it done and we were the last ones on the ferry.
Bertie and I have been on the road for just about five months now and we’re seeing some amazing things, meeting some wonderful people and learning A LOT about ourselves and each other along the way. Along with what we’ve known of each other and the world, there have definitely been several things to get used to. Some are more important than others since some are downright trivial, and this is by no means a complete list since it seems to grow with each day we travel. This is probably what makes travel so fun and interesting – new places, new cultures, new foods, new ideas.
Continue reading 'Merry Christmas Everyone!'»
A funny thing happened to us in Cairns . . .
We stayed at a hostel named Travelers Oasis and got there in the evening, right before closing because our flight was running late. The guy who owned the hostel, Gabe, was at the counter when we got there. Great guy he was. He asked us what our plans were, well, we had some plans . . . loose plans that is. We knew we wanted to go to Port Douglas to snorkel on the Great Barrier Reef then go to Cape Tribulation, but other than that, we hadn’t worked much out. Before we knew it, Gabe was booking us an all day trip out to the reef for the next day from Cairns. It even included an introductory dive–wow, sounded great. And before we knew it, he was planning the rest of our stay up north. We decided to trust this guy we only knew for 10 minutes and follow his suggestions and this is what happened.
Continue reading 'Road Trip to Cape Tribulation and the Daintree National Park'»
I want to take a moment to tell you about our visit with ‘real Aussies’. These Aussies live in Melbourne. The first is named Aaron and I met him at a hostel in Amsterdam in 2001. We had a great time exploring that wacky city and at the same time realized that we both lived in NYC a few blocks from one another. So, once back in the states, we became friends and when Sonya (the second Aussie friend) came to visit Aaron in NYC, we really hit it off. I think we spent more time together than they did and for sure we had a great time. If you don’t have Aussie friends, you better go out and find some! They are really good fun.
Anyways, it was so great to see them again. I’ve been here 2 other times (the last time was 6 years ago) so it was good to share them with Paul. Aaron had us the first weekend and our first stop was Blagowrie, which is out by the beach. We visited his parents and grandma and just had a blast. These Aussies sure know how to have a great time. Aaron made some kangaroo rolls which were really tasty. He took kangaroo, mixed it with spices and wrapped it in pastry–Yum! and we spent the evening, playing records (his step-mum, DJ Margie spun the toons all night long), we sang, played maracas, spoons, and the tambourine. Oh boy were we were a sight to see. It was a very fun evening. Really good to see his family again.
Continue reading 'Our Time in Melbourne'»
So, we’ve reached THAT point of our trip. Where we cast away our rental car and throw caution to the wind as we’ve begun to take our bus journey down the east coast of Australia. Ahhhh, the open road. Being chauffered in an elegantly large red limosuine. The comfortable seats, the movies, the legroom. The elegant life of bus travel. Nothing else can quite match it. 2300 km seperate Cairns to the north with Sydey to the south. 2300km. It’s like taking a bus from Maine to Miami, or Seattle to Tiajuana. Maybe I’ve been unfortunately tainted by the bus travel of my past. Interstate-75 stretches from Detroit all the way to the southern tip of the United States in Miami. Between the big cities, an endless stretch of black asphalt ribbons across the countryside and is dotted with identical small towns. Interchangeable small towns with two block long downtowns. Small towns that have a feed store, grocery store and a small WWI memorial in the form of a white obilisk in a small park across the street, surrounded by a lush field of green grass. In the distance, a dog pants in the shade. Full buses in the hot weather without air conditioning. All the windows were open, even the emergency exits in the roof were open. You never knew who you’d meet on a bus. In the US, outside of the northeast, it’s a mode of transport for those with little money, otherwise, you’d fly instead.
This is the bus travel of my past.
Continue reading 'Our Dog Has a Limp . . .'»
For the past two months we’ve been racing around New Zealand. Our time there was great, but we seemed to only spend two or three days in a town before we’d be on the road again and off to the next destination. Some days we started at 6am, and other days we didn’t get into a town until after 7pm. I haven’t calculated the mileage, but I think it’s safe to say we have been on every road and highway in New Zealand!
We need some downtime.
We need a vacation from our vacation.
Ever since I was a kid watching Looney-Tunes cartoons, I’ve had a certain fascination with Tasmania. It was the Tasmanian devil that did it for me. He wasn’t my favorite character, but I liked him. Maybe you liked him too. I knew that the real Tasmanian Devil probably didn’t look like what the cartoon artists presented, but I became really curious about far off land that would contain an animal called a devil. Coming all the way to Australia, we had to go a bit further and see this area.
We spent a wonderful weekend with Aaron and Sonya in Melbourne, then hopped a TigerAir Airbus A320 and headed south towards another adventure.
Continue reading 'Downtime in Hobart, Tasmania'»
So, I never really understood the lure of Ayers Rock. My friend, Frida, went years ago and raved about it and all I could think was, “it’s a big ol rock”. Well, guess what folks, it’s a whole lot more than that!! Let me tell you about our mini trip to the outback and Ayers Rock. We flew out to Alice Springs which is smack dab in the middle of Australia. Our hostel was a little out of town–you had to cross a dry river bed to get into town. But, it’s not totally dry my friends, no…there is water underneith the river. Another interesting thing, is the river is a secret spot for Aboriginal people and it is not unusual to see them walking, sitting under trees, or sleeping in it. So we got into town and it was pretty small. Very hot and dry.
Continue reading 'Isn’t It Just a Big Old Rock?'»
Well, getting to travel has given us the opportunity to see many things: exotic locations, fun people, cool bars and lots of outdoor activities.
What it hasn’t given us time to do is get on the internet and update our website.
We have a few posts that we will get on and back on track within a few days.
We look forward to catching everyone up with what we’ve been doing.
Bert and Patty
We spent today enjoying Melbourne. Waking up late, lunch with Aaron in a wonderful little Indonesian
restaurant, then we set out to investigate our new surroundings under a clear blue sky punctuated with a hot sun.
Christine and I took a free tour around the city by bus. It took an hour or so and was a great way to see the sights and save energy. We’ve done a heap of hikes over the past few months, we deserve a tour on wheels. The last stop we went to was the Shrine of Remembrance, a national memorial that honors the men and women who have served, and died, for Australia in war. We didn’t have much time, but it seemed important – especially today.
Today is, of course, is Remembrance Day.
Continue reading 'Remembrance Day'»