My new motto:
I seem to have quite a lot of entries featuring “Goodbye”, I notice. After ca. 5 weeks, it’s farewell again. I had a great time in Australia, have met many old friends and acquaintances again, made new friends, and have feasted on wine, pies, pasta and burgers – the vegan, alcohol free diet in the ashram can’t come soon enough!
Ok, in proper order. At the last update, I was just leaving Sydney to fly North. I am now back in Sydney, and will fly out to India tomorrow morning. Instead of words, I’ll mainly let the pictures speak, my bucket list has become smaller in the last weeks…
Flying in Brisbane
I flew a plane by myself! Well, at least a little bit. The pilot did take off and landing, (otherwise I would probably not be alive today to write this entry), and I did the bit in the middle. Before we went up, I asked myself why I do these things, and during the flight I questioned this even more. In this tiny bit of metal, we were buffeted by the winds like a ping pong ball in a strong draught, I throttled the joystick and flew a zigzag pattern towards the Gold Coast, my fear of heights suddenly set in after having been in abeyance for a long time, and by the time we set down I was soaked in sweat. Even though it may not sound like it – I actually had a lot of fun, and I won’t forget this experience for a long time. One day, I want to spend hours in a flight simulator, and maybe go up again somewhere.
Whale Watching in Hervey Bay
The whales were on their way back from Northern Queensland and had their babies with them, of which only the little dorsal fins could be seen. The fathers however enjoyed life, jumped into the air and wagged their fins. Beautiful and impressive.
Flight over the Great Barrier Reef, at the Whitsunday Islands
Such a flight needs no words, just enjoy. The big white area is Whitehaven Beach, by the way – I sailed and swam there a few days later, see below. A dream come true.
Sailing trip on an old clipper “Solway Lass” – Whitsunday Islands
3 totally perfect days, with a great group of people. A 112 years old boat (sorry, ship). Including snorkeling at the reef and swimming at Whitehaven Beach, which is, perhaps, the ultimate beach (the iPhone couldn’t cope with the white sands). So wonderful.
Rain forest in the North
Was only there for a short time, near Kuranda, one can spend a lot of time there.
Hot Air Balloon over the Tablelands in Cairns
Why hadn’t I learned from my jaunt in the little plane? Again the feeling just before going on a roller coaster, but it was actually a very calm and beautiful flight, would do it again. As I said on Facebook: The best part was chasing the kangaroos, the least favorite bit was trotting in kangaroo poo thereafter…
Snorkelling at the Great Barrier Reef
I hired an underwater digital camera, but the fish was faster, I mainly got tails and fins. The snorkeling area that day was actually not the best of all the spots I snorkeled at for the last weeks, but at least I got some pictures. I discovered my love of snorkeling, and one day do want to do the diving certificate.
Getting to know the police
What, 116 kilometers per hour is too fast??? Come on…!
A tip: Do not drive too fast in Australia. It is very, very expensive! Well, but at least the friendly police woman did wish me a nice vacation, without a hint of irony.
So, conclusion after 5 weeks – a great country, some time in the future I want to see more, and it was also very nice to enjoy Western luxuries, and when my last little apartment even boasted a washing machine and tumble dryer, I nearly wept tears of joy – who’d have thought that such unsexy things can be the cause for happy emotions? I’ve seen many animals in their natural habitat, including 2 wild pythons who lived on some friends’ rooftop; hopping kangaroos and wallabies, unfortunately often in front of cars, and cars always win; turtles, dolphins, only very few spiders, many colorful fish… My credit cards stopped working after a while, which was a bit embarrassing, because it really is very expensive here. But still: Down Under – you rock!
And here once more my favorite pictures from the last post, simply because I love the colors: