I love it when a plan comes together

Trip Start Jun 30, 2004
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Trip End Feb 14, 2005


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Flag of Australia  ,
Saturday, January 1, 2005

Hello all and Happy New Year.

I've actually been away for 6 months now and I have had this 'logue for a year. So what of the 6 months? Highlights in a nut shell:

Central Park
Everything and everyone in Ocean Beach, California
Learing to Scuba Dive
Mana Island
Snow Boarding for the first time ever.
Meeting Kim

So..... back to OZ land.

I have been here a while and formulated a plan. Its taken me a while, but at least I'm definite. You have to remember that Australia is bigger than Europe (I saw a picture overlaying). And to feasibly see everything in that time I think is a hard task. If I was here for a year, then I would do it, but I'm not. And as my travels have suggested, I like staying in places for a while, to get a feel for it. Some may say its a wasted opportunity, but I am not bothered what other's think.

Now I know that I have been in Sydney a while, but I have worked (albeit on and off). Its a hard thing to get work when you are working under the table. Its not like i can just go into a shop and ask for work. So the funds have come in dribs and drabs. I have enjoyed (and am enjoying)staying at the Jolly Swagman. It reminds me a lot of College/University (not the building though), and that is a period in my life I treasure fondly. Maybe that's why I have stayed there so long. I have met a lot of travellers and discussed everything from Air Quality to Zealots and it has all been good, but part of me still lives in Ocean Beach and I am gonna see if I can find somewhere like it in OZ.

So what have I been up to?

Well Chrimbo was.......different!! Went and sat on some grass in Rushcutters Bay (still in Sydney) and had a BBQ. Brought along a Frisbee, football and my guitar for good measure. It was an ok day, but not great by my standards. I guess I wasn't in the mood. I don't even think I had that much to drink. I did get an inflatable hand (the kinda of thing they have at footie matches). I spoke to Mum and Cat briefly on the phone, which was cool. The best thing? Kim returning from Melbourne. We have spent a lot of time together and like each other a lot (at least I think she likes me ha ha ) and with her gone for a week to meet and pick up her sister, I have felt a little lost. But she returned late Christmas night and all was good!! A lot of people went to see Judge Jules on Bondi Beach, but it wasn't my cuppa tea. And seeing as it has been a shit summer over here, that would have made it worse.

New Years has also been something that a lot of the Brits here wanted to do since forever. Every year, being stuck in England, you get to see another countries celebrations and wish you weren't stuck in whiny UK, although I do believe it's what you make it. Over here, the hype is just huge and its all everyone was talking about for ages. The best seats in the house were down by the harbour. The botanical gardens behind the Opera house were charging a small fortune to get in. Kims sister bought her a ticket for $150. Ouch!! The parts of the gardens that were free were jammed by noon and the perimeter was like Fort Knox. Seeing as I didn't get out of bed till 3 and finish pottering around, there would be no garden viewing for me. I did find a patch of grass and sat down with my own thoughts for the night. Although, I didn't see the fireworks from the Bridge, I saw the firwworks from behind the Opera house. It was really impressive. I was surrounded by people oohing and ahhing. I liked the fact that had a lot of time to self reflect. The only bummer that I hadn't spent the night with Kim (that did suck) I later bumped Kim just as her and her sis were saying goodbye to each other (her sister was leaving Sydney for Brisbane). I was now left with a teary eyed Kim, but nothing that a little rose, time, some Terry hugging and a few well placed kisses wouldn't cure. I actually really missed her in Melbourne.

Other things I have been up to? There is a Chinese Garden right in the middle of the city, just south of Darling Harbour. Whilst Kim was in Melbourne, I took advantage of my free time and popped along. It always fills me with joy and immense calm to find places like this slap bang in the middle of a city. Its a bit like central park in NY, but not on such a grand scale. Anyway, this garden? Pure Bliss. Alot of Koi carp swimming in this massive pond. There were lizards running across rocks and ducklings hopping across lily pads. The place is littered with trees and a few Chinese buildings. I know my mum would love it, a lot of people come here to gather thoughts, and its only $6 to get in (about 2.50). I have been here twice, the second time dragging Kim out of bed, though it was a more rushed affair. I'll get some photo's up when I have the chance.

Fresh topic though being the earthquake/tsunami that has affected most of Asia and every other country that I am supposedly going to. So lots more thinking in order. But it was really harsh to see the news reports on the news.

Anyway my rough plan for my remaining time in Oz is as follows: (subject to change on daily intervals)

Head up to as far as Brisbane/Byron Bay and heading back down staying in a lot of Hippy towns/coastal hangouts. I can now say that I have lived an worked in Australia, so now I wanna go and hang out in some chilled relaxed areas. I know some people will bitch at me for not going here/there and doing this/that, but like I said, its my trip and it isn't as cheap as people think. For me to go up to Cairns for example, is like giving up 2 weeks food/rent and drinking costs, and that's just to get there. Just doesn't make sense.

And at the turn of the year, I can say "where are my car keys?" in 18 languages. Check me out!!!

Anyway, I hope all is cool with everyone and that you all had good Xmas's/New Years. Thanks to everyone that sent me presents. You all know who you are. Still waiting for return emails from Simon and Glen, so hop to it guys.

Adios

Tel
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