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The entry that won't do anyone good but myself
November 23, 2004

Once in a while I get fearful of the inevitable future: getting older. But the getting older part doesn’t scare me, it’s the actuality of being old. Like really old: 85+. We performed the obligatory Thanksgiving ritual this year last Sunday, as half of the B’s in-town family will be joining us on our mini-break to Canada, and we wanted to make sure that the B’s grandma was going to get something for the holiday. The B’s grandmother is about 10 years older than my own grandmother, from what I understand; where my grandmother still lives by herself, and is perfectly able to go to the grocery store and pick up her mail at the post at 70+, the B’s grandmother is in an assisted-living home and suffers from what they call dementia. Whenever we see her, she relates the same stories over and over again. I can’t imagine not being able to keep people straight in my head – “Are you my husband, my son, or my grandson?” It scares the hell out of me.

So I was laying in bed last night, thinking about my life, and more recently, the trip to Australia. It seems that the knowledge of the trip is still there in my head, but usually when I reflect on it, it is just the facts that come to mind – the mundane knowledge of the generalities of the adventures I experienced while abroad. I thought it may be best to actually write something down about the intricacies and feelings I had during the trip… so here you go:

In Sydney(Day 1): I waited for the B in front of the international wing of the airport for a good half-hour, smoking as many cigarettes as I dared. Slightly comatose, I stared at the aussies picking up loved ones returning from trips abroad, making out and heading back to the car park to go home. Once the B found me (he had been at the incorrect terminal), we found a bus that would drop us off at the apartments where the B and his mom were staying so they could immediately put me to work as a luggage-watcher. That day is a blur. Starbucks – tripleshotsoybadlyneededlatte, stat – side of breakfast – thank you. Taxi – can we fit all of this luggage in here? I think I can if I ride with 2 suitcases in my lap – did you remember your camera bag? Hotel – ah, finally – room won’t be ready until 3? Well, it’s 1 already – 2 hours isn’t bad – I think I’m going to pass out in the lobby – I think I’ll go to the restroom again to play with the flushing mechanisms – room is ready, awesome – pass.the.fuck.out. Hotel – later – B waking me up for something – what? Eating? Sure, I’ll take whatever – oh, did you get me fish & chips? I really didn’t want this – pass.the.fuck.out.

The Outback (Day 2): I’d been in Australia for less than 24 hours, and I was getting onto another plane, bound for Uluru. As soon as we’d landed, it was onto a bus, to the hotel, unload the bus, get our rooms, onto the bus, here’s a little walk, onto the bus, here’s Kata Tjuta – take a hike!, back on the bus, Uluru for sunset. We got on the bus again to go back to the hotel. I really can’t remember if we’d even ate anything that day, though I’m sure we had at some point. After a quick shower, and the getting-to-know-you ordeal with the hotel room, we got on another bus, this time for a short ride to the barbeque place for some dinner. We happened to go to a few of these places while we were in Oz, and it rather surprised me that no one in the states has created places like this – they would make a fortune. We chose our meat (chicken – I just couldn’t think about eating a roo), they handed it to us on a plate, and we grilled it ourselves. The sides were stale and dry, but the chicken was cooked perfectly, thanks to me. After that and a glass of wine, we were ready for sleep.

At Uluru (Day 3): We woke up early and got on a bus before dawn to witness the sunrise over the rock and the outback. The temperature was 0 C, and the wind was blowing at around 75kmph. As we watched the sun come up, my hands were wrapped securely around a cuppa tea, and I was munching on biscuits from plastic wrappers. They were good biscuits, all buttery and happily crispy. I was slightly miffed because the “walkabout” breakfast we received had a croissant sandwich with ham and cheese. I was so hungry I almost just chucked the ham for some cheese, but thought better of it. My eyes watered constantly, and I made no move to wipe them away, for fear of frostbitten fingers. Instead of climbing the rock after a short trip on the bus, I went back to the hotel with the B, still frozen. We ate brunch at the hotel, where I tipped the servers heartily, which I found out did absolutely no good for them. Oh well. We went to the store and got Tim Tams – oh, how I love you! Oh, bus ride to King’s Canyon. Gorgeous.

At King’s Canyon (Day 4): The morning was brusque, but the cold was easily fixed by the sweat and heat of climbing. The hike was incredible – I made my from the front (the leader-chick) to the back (where the B was lagging, taking pictures) many times, in all likelihood, covering the trail twice or thrice. After we met back up with the rest of the group (who had hiked Uluru the day before, and were sore, so they took the short/flat hike), we enjoyed getting our stuff together for yet another bus trip across the desert. The ride to Alice Springs was eventful with arguments for and against the music, the commentary, and the breaks.

At Alice Springs (Day 5): When we arrived, it was dark, and the B and I ate dinner at the hotel restaurant rather than joining the party for some more Australian BBQ. I think I was more tired from the rush-rush of things than from anything else. The next morning was awake, late for breakfast, yelling at the kitchen staff, people freaking out, people departing, naps by the pool, watching little English boys splash about, a bus ride, an airport, and a plane to Cairns.

In Cairns (Day 5, still): A landing, a bus, a drive. The most roundabouts in a city award goes to Cairns. We arrive in Port Douglas past dark.

In Port Douglas (Days 6-12): Lying on the bed with the massive windows and balcony slider open felt so damned good. The air was soft and slightly chilled, but was filled with the smell of the ocean and jungle vegetation. It was humid – so humid I didn’t have to put on lotion every morning when I got out of the shower. In the hotel, I walked around our suite without shoes on – I loved the feeling of the carpet and the marble floors. I ate a million individual-sized Tim Tams from the comp bar, as well as Schweppes Lemonade – why oh why can’t one get Schweppes Lemonade in the states – then asked for more. The ocean there was warm – just across the beach from the hotel. I should have spent more time in the ocean. A week is not enough to adapt to the salt water in my eyes and lungs. I burned the crap out of my back on the first day of snorkeling – I thought of putting the sun block everywhere but there, stupid me. I spent 2 full days lying carefully on my stomach, trying not to move too much, and cursing my bra. The crisps at the supermarket were delicious. The barramundi fish & chips was to die for – as was eating it on a drizzly day in the marina. The last day we were there, we took a helicopter ride over the reef, went snorkeling (again), and parasailed. Afterwards, we went to dinner at The Nautilus, which was insanely gorgeous, and (wine/water incidents aside) was the perfect way to enjoy the foliage of Northern Australia. I can’t wait to go back.

To Cairns (Day 12): The ride back to Cairns from Port Douglas occurred at 3am. Trying to sleep, the B and I stretch out, and put our belongings in other seats, as we’re the only people on the bus. By the time we reach the airport (it’s still dark! Thank god our plane has been delayed!), the bus is over-filled with 20+ people, the B and I have all of our possessions in our laps, and there are 3 knees pressed into my backside. We hop on the plane to Sydney, happy to be in the air again.

In Sydney
(Day 13): The plane lands in Sydney 3 hours after takeoff from Cairns and we sleepily drag our luggage to a taxi to get a ride into the city. For some reason, this trip takes much longer than the first time I was at this airport, though we didn’t have to drop off miscellaneous people at hotels. We sling our belongings in the hotel and head for the train station to take us to Blacktown, on the way grabbing some food and eating it at the park at Circular Quay. The train ride was spent with the B sleeping on my shoulder – I was too paranoid to sleep – I didn’t want to miss our stop. The time spent at Featherdale Wildlife Park was the best few hours in Australia. We met roos, koalas, and prehistoric-looking birds all too cute and interesting to see for only a moment. The way back to Sydney proper was slow (train delayed, then switched halfway there), but when we stepped out of the Circular Quay station again, the lights of the city were wonderful beacons. We took a taxi back to the hotel (horrible feet hurtingness!) and ate room service. We fell asleep early, and woke the next day for our trip home.

In Boise, many months later: I can now see the importance of keeping a travel diary when abroad. The things stated here really don’t compare with my actual memories, and I’m sure that if I’d have written them down whilst experiencing them, it would have been a much more descriptive entry. Will surely try harder in the future. And for those of you who actually read this far – you must be incredibly bored. Heh.

Comments (3)

little ms. tired-pants
November 12, 2004

Sorry people – moving, you know.

Yesterday I was about to burst with creative juices for which I had no outlet. I really really badly want to be able to sew (with my new sewing machine 5k1||z), but there’s nowhere in my house to sew (or to get around boxes). So, I was thinking about redesigning some stuff here, but it just feels so… well… immaterial. I want something to touch, something I can hang on a wall (proverbially) and step back to look at. I need texture and smell; sometimes a computer just can’t cut it.

In about 3 weeks, I’ll be living in a new place. I am blessed to have people in my life with money who like to purchase things (for me!), so we now have 2 humongous (7’ X 11’) area rugs that are gorgeous, as well as a new couch. The rest will be purchased with our own money. I’m sure I’ve mentioned our current living room set before, but I’m too lazy to go searching; we’re getting rid of all of it – the massive couch, the entertainment center, the coffee table, and the end table. Once we’re settled in our new place, we’ll be getting a new dining set, as well. All of the aforementioned pieces of furniture were purchased in San Diego circa 1985, and we got them a few years ago when the B’s mom decided to finally get new stuff. The furniture, all of it, belongs in a cheap retirement home in FL somewhere. It’s bad, people, bad. I can’t wait to see it go far far away where I never have to look at it again.

Pictures are actually forthcoming from certain events that aren’t too far in the past. The B and I went to the new place last night for probably the last time before we move in, as the current tenant is coming back from wherever this weekend. I’ll miss going in like I own the place and pretending that I live there already. I keep telling myself that it will all be over soon – too soon, in fact. We have less than 2 actual weeks of packing time, as we’re off to Canada for the T-day weekend to be… well… Canadian, I guess. There will be plenty of photo opportunities there as well.

Top priority: Stop gnashing teeth together at night, so I don’t wake up with a jaw ache. Damned stress.

Comments (2)

it's finally over
November 3, 2004

Whilst perusing the blogosphere, I'm noticing the trend of complaining about the election results. And while I'd be glad to do so myself, I'll mostly refrain - if you voted, good for you! If you didn't, you'd better be not of voting age or unable to move any part of your body. No matter what the outcome is, it's all up to us - so here's to 2008, when we can hope even more people get out the vote (and possibly get someone in office that doesn't look like the missing link). Hey! Look at me point your attention elsewhere:

Halloween costume pictures!!!

mrawr - check the skirt - that's hott about to attack! our pumpkins - the B's on the right, mine on the left

That will be all for now.

Comments (3)