A Travellerspoint blog

And So It Begins...............................

Just horsing around !!

sunny

On 8th February I made my way to Brisbane Domestic Airport to catch the QF1768 Quantas flight to Mackay, departing at 2:25PM. Scary how fast the last week has gone actually..........I thought I had so much more time in Brissy but it turns out that when you're having fun the time seems to go quicker!? I somehow manage to repack my case - although not as well as it was when I arrived - and make my way to the airport again. Arriving in plenty of time I quickly check in and go through security. Why is that I always get pulled aside for those bomb testings??? Am I THAT suspicious......??? Anyway all goes smoothly and I quickly gather up my stuff to find my gate. :)
In Mackay I stayed at a hostel called 'Geckos Rest' (http://www.geckosrest.com.au/ which actually turns out be pretty ok! But I am really unprepared for the humidity there........I mean WOAH!!!! The air con in the dorm room is my saving grace..............If I go outside then I only stay out there as long as needed then it's all hurry hurry back to the bliss and comfort of the dorm room! haha! :) I don't wander too far from the hostel due to the humidity and of course the fact that i don't really know it that well! I make it to the big shopping center 'Canelands' where I find the food court to be a really good place to eat! There's a healthy sandwich place which does salads, smoothies, juices, jacket potatoes and basically the complete opposite to what the other fast food joints are selling! They do a mean fruit salad for breakfast and I also get a big slice of their banana cake which turns out to be amazing! :D So this is basically where I come for food whilst I'm in Mackay, the only other place I visit is a newsagent to buy a magazine or two (which actually has a free black dress/cover-up with it ! Bonus!). I do also do a recckie to find out where the Greyhound Bus picks up from :) . I do a book switch at the hostel's book exchange and find one I haven't read but wanted to: 'Memoires of A Geisha'. So I just lie on my bed, with the air con on and read, read, read like I've never read before!
So on 10th February I again repack my stuff, check out of the hostel (albeit a bit late...........they thought I was staying another night as I hadn't checked out at the right time!!! They didn't charge me though as there was no way I was going to spend 3-4 hours outside sweating when I didn't need to!!! I <3 aircon!) I find my way to the petrol station to wait for my bus, buying a drink there when I arrive. I do start to wonder if I've missed it as it seems to take a while to turn up but I find out later that this bus does tend to be a bit late!!! Thankfully!!! So when it does arrive, I make myself known to the bus driver, let him take my big backpack and then board the bus. It doesn't take long to get to Ilbilbie so I'm soon met by Gary at the Roadhouse and driven back to the Ranch. (Gary is the caretaker and looks after the place whilst Rebecca and Darren are at work in the mines.) He shows me around my accommodation http://quiethorses.weebly.com/accomodation.html which turns out to be really nice!!!!! I unpack my shower bits, take a lovelt, refreshing one and then get dressed before continuing to unpack. It isn't long before I'm all done and am back talking to Gary waiting for Rebecca and Darren to get back from work. I really think I am going to like this place, the horses I've seen look gorgeous and the place is beautiful. I'm so pleased I have the opportunity to work here, I think I'm going to learn a whole lot............................. :) xxx

Posted by Sunshine_Sarah 22:15 Archived in Australia Tagged animals flying airport adventure work flights airplanes learning horse_ranch Comments (1)

Brisbane..........Now What????

sunny

So here I am In Brisbane, or Brissy as the locals call it! I seem to have finally found my way from my B+B to the CBD and back which bodes well for this week! :) This week consisted mostly of me wandering all around, taking in the sights, sounds and yes a few beers, all helping me to get properly acclimatized to the Australian way of life. So far I like it, nice and relaxed, nothing taken too seriously....I even found a pub called 'The Pig and Whistle!' We have one of those in my village back home! Did make me laugh! :)
I really enjoyed my free walking tour, taking in all the street art that Brissy had to offer. The guide was really nice and well informed, the group was not too small or too big and the people were really nice too. It actually helped me to navigate around the city as I could look at a piece of art and be like, 'Oh yea, now I know where I am....' We caught a free CAT ferry too which was really cool! Just to get back from one side of the river to the other, these are the free ones which run all day. They go everywhere too I think.
I went to Streets Beach almost everyday too seeing as the weather was so beautiful! Definitely better than being back home in the freezing cold for sure!! It still feels a bit surreal though, being here halfway around the world away from everything and everyone I've known. It's good though to feel that way I think, getting out of your comfort zone and doing something completely new and different. :) I certainly loved it!
The highlight of being here though definitely had to be going to Lone Pine and holding a Koala!!!! SSOOOO amazing!!!!! :) I took a lovely boat ride out there (All the while praying I wouldn't be sick!! Thankfully I wasn't!) with commentary on the different parts of the River we were sailing on. Very informative. A lovely way to start the day. First thing I did when i got there was definitely find out about holding the koalas!! 16$ I think it was for 1 photo. So worth it though! Unfortunately mine wasn't called Dave but he was definitely very cute! I had a wander around and saw a lot of other native Australian animals, including a Dingo!! :O The Tassie Devils were hiding though.... :( Went to see the Kangas and got my pic taken beside one too! Best.Day.Ever! I suppose this is ubiquitous, EVERYONE who comes Down Under does, find a Kanga, take a pic of you feeding one...if you can get a koala too that's awesome........but it has to be done! :) I had a great day there, saw some Eagles/Birds of Prey which were incredible!!!! :O :) Also saw some water dragons by the river whilst waiting for the boat back too! They were eating the bread which the driver/guides were throwing for the fish! Haha! Awesome!
Also this week i discover one of the BEST cooking shows (apart from Misterchef!) on Australian TV: My Kitchen Rules !!! Amazing!!! The 2 judges, Pete and Manu aren't too bad looking either, another reason to tune in! :P There are 15 teams who start out the competition, cooking for the other 5 teams in their particular group and they go to each other's instant restaurants located in the team's own homes!!! Scary or what!?! So each night of the week is a different restaurant until all 5 teams have cooked and scored each other. The team on the bottom of the leaderboard at the end (in each of the 2 groups, consisting of 5 teams each) go head to head and then the losing team goes home. Each week a team is eliminated. There are also challenges along the way as well as cooking in Kitchen HQ. It's just an awesome Aussie cooking show where normal people compete for the title and for a life changing sum of money. (The team that eventually won had never been to an elimination head to head !) So I tune into this every night when it's on and hope that I can continue to watch it to the end.......!
All too soon, the time comes for me to leave Brisbane behind and head into Mackay where I will be staying for 2 nights before getting the Greyhound bus to Ilbilbie to work on the horse ranch, Loose Rein !! I have LOVED Brisbane and definitely want to return at some point.........what i didn't realise then was how soon I'd be back......!!

Picture is of the Ilbilbie Roadhouse where the Greyhound bus stops.....literally in the middle of nowhere..........eeppp!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/21766727@N00/4545055859/

Posted by Sunshine_Sarah 16:55 Archived in Australia Tagged adventure brisbane new_country Comments (0)

Leaving home.........................

Day 1.......... 01/02/2013

semi-overcast

So I'm finally leaving on my Great Big Australian Adventure!!!! Can't quite believe it really!! I mean, is it real?? Am I actually going away for 1 whole year???? It kind of doesn't feel real, that I'm flying to the other side of the world.......it is exciting though..........I have always wanted to go to Australia ever since my sister did her own backpacking adventure. I am going to be volunteering on a horse ranch for the first 6 months, learning Natural Horsemanship and the Australian way of doing things!!! EEeekkk!!!! It will be amazing fun though I really cannot wait! :)
I was meant to be travelling with another girl but she decided to stay at home with her boyfriend as he was having some sort of operation!! I was a bit annoyed at first but then got over it pretty quickly. She's the one wasting the opportunity. It'll be better on my own anyway.....I hope!!
The flight over was good actually. Didn't feel too long at all, had about an hour or so to wait in Singapore which wasn't really enough time to do anything other than freshen up in the Ladies and then ensure I knew where my gate was. Met a girl there and started chatting to her until it was time to board. I was definitely ready to get to my accommodation by the time I arrived in Brisbane! Had to get the Sky-train from the Airport, which thankfully I had already booked my ticket for. Waited a bit for the next train and then tried to find my B+B...........must admit, I came out the wrong way at the station, therefore I was a bit lost coming out as it was nothing like I had expected when talking it through with Mum...!! EEeeppp!! Thankfully a nice cyclist saw me and stopped to point me in the right direction...turns out I was only a right turn away from where I should of come out anyway!! Haha! :D Great Start!! Not too much later I finally arrived at Eskdale B+B. It was about 9am (give or take!) by the time I got there and so I took a much needed shower. AAhhhh that's better....I also had a bit of a sleep and by a bit I mean the whole night's sleep I'd missed out on during my flights!! Oopppsss!! Anyway I did eventually get up and go out to Brisbane CBD where I found the Tourist Information where I booked myself onto a free walking tour of all the street art, as well as a bar for a couple of beers and a nice plate of dips with turkish bread! Nom Nom indeed! :)

Posted by Sunshine_Sarah 01:03 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged flying airport adventures airplanes leaving_home Comments (0)

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