I’m Not Like Other Females

I moved to a new Airbnb to wait a week before my ten-day adventure tour began. The host was great, giving me rides. But I needed a way to get around myself, so I rented a scooter. It's my favorite way to drive around!
Days 393-394

It was time to check out of my Airbnb at Flic’s house and check-in at my next place across town. Because my car died, Flic was terrific and gave me a ride to the other house. She even helped me carry my bags to my little suite on the side of the house. We hugged goodbye, and I was going to miss her. 

I was renting a guest suite attached to the side of the house but had a private entrance through a sliding patio door. It was recently remodeled and was comfortable and clean. The host, Colleen, met me to make sure I had everything I needed. She appeared to be in her 50s and lived alone in the main house. Colleen made pearl jewelry, which was really beautiful. Her hospitality was amazing, providing breakfast, juice, milk, coffee, the works. There was a table with a microwave and a small fridge with all the goodies. 

I relaxed in the room, searching for things to do over the next week before my ten-day adventure tour began. After an hour, I had to use the toilet. I unbuckled my belt, unbuttoned my shorts, and started to pull them down as I opened the lid. I almost fell backward when I saw a frog swimming around, trying to jump out at me! 

I couldn’t believe it! I quickly pulled my shorts up and watched the frog trying his hardest to pull himself out. He was huge when he was spread out. Eventually, he tired himself out and sat still, staring at me. I messaged Colleen, but she didn’t see it for 20 minutes. 

I couldn’t help but laugh. When I was in Southeast Asia, I met several European backpackers who warned me about Australia’s creatures. They said, “Snakes and spiders will hide in the toilet and jump out at you.” At the time, I laughed at them, assuming they were overdramatic and stereotyping. When I was in South Australia, I showered with a poisonous spider. Now there was a frog inside my toilet. I realized those European backpackers weren’t exaggerating! 

Over the next 20 minutes, I periodically checked on the frog, and he was still sitting there. When Colleen showed up, she and her tiny dog came inside, and I took her to the toilet. The frog was gone! I left the lid open and assured Colleen there was a frog inside. She said, “Well, he either jumped out and is around here somewhere or he went back into the system.” I cautiously looked around, afraid that the frog was about to jump on me. 

Colleen explained, “He most likely didn’t jump out because my dog would have found him by now. He’s probably in the system and will appear again within the next day or two. When you see him again, do you feel comfortable grabbing him and setting him outside in the garden?” “Um, no. I do not feel comfortable picking up a frog,” I explained. 

I asked Colleen how the frog got inside the toilet system. She said, “It’s fairly common. They get into the main system and make their way through the pipes to people’s homes.” I couldn’t believe this was a common occurrence. I flushed about three times before nervously using the toilet, afraid the frog was going to get me! 

Colleen was on her way to town and offered to drop me off at Cable Beach. I accepted her offer and walked around. The views were beautiful and peaceful. Now I understood why so many people fell in love with Broome. 

I sat at an outdoor restaurant and ordered some food and a beer. I planned to watch the sunset over the ocean, but suddenly, a thick blanket of fog appeared. A camel tour walked up from the beach through the mist, which looked pretty cool. 

On my walk back to my Airbnb, I stopped at Divers Tavern and ordered a beer. I stood near the bar, but everyone was with a group, making it difficult for me to talk to anyone. 

I decided to walk back, but it was dark outside. It was more than a mile away, and the road became isolated. I got my knife ready in my hand, just in case. Colleen told me earlier not to walk as a single female after dark or in the early morning because some women have been assaulted in the area by local aboriginals. She’s also seen backpackers stumbling from the beach coming off drugs. 

Collen’s neighborhood was safe and well-kept. However, the road from town to her neighborhood was isolated with trees and bushes on both sides. On one side, there was a giant mound of sand covered in brush, which blocked access to the beach. Colleen cautioned me that people hide in the bushes. 

I am cheap and didn’t want to pay for a taxi, so I walked. It was a long walk, and I was always on guard. I told Colleen that I might rent a scooter, and she said, “Most females are afraid to drive one.” I laughed, “I’m not like most females.” 

The next morning, I was hesitant to use the toilet, but I really had to pee. I opened the lid, and the frog was sitting there, staring at me. I messaged Colleen, and she came over right away. She reached inside with a glove on and grabbed the frog. She said, “Oh, he is bigger than the picture made him appear.” Colleen set the frog outside in the garden, and I was grateful that she was willing to get him out! 

Colleen mentioned that her friend Bill was coming over, and he could take me to town if I needed a ride. I took them up on the offer and had Bill take me to the outdoor market. I accidentally took the keys to Felicity’s house, so I met her at the market to return them. She had a booth with her hats on display. We chatted for a bit, and then I walked around to check out the locally made items. 

I walked to the scooter rental company and talked with a girl inside. It cost $113 to rent one for three days. I couldn’t stand not having a ride, and taxies were expressive there, so I signed up. 

I love scooters! I drove one in Thailand and Vietnam, and they’re so much fun! I love the wind and sun beating down on me. Nothing is impeding my vision. Having the means to get around represents freedom to me. 

I drove to the jetty and walked around the main street. It was Sunday, so most things were closed. 

Next, I drove the scooter to lookout spots and beaches. I loved exploring the town, driving down random roads. I stopped at the brewery that I had visited before and sat inside at the bar. I ordered a mango beer and fries. It was a hot day, so I needed some shade and a refreshing beverage. 

I drove back to my Airbnb and relaxed. I had a few more days to explore Broome, so I booked a few things, like a jetski tour. The ten-day tour that would take me to Darwin would include 20 people, so I enjoyed my alone time while I could. I had heard fantastic things about Broome and my first several days were full of stress and worry. Now that everything was all set, I could spend time exploring Broome and get back on track with my travels. 

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Throughout her wild 3-week journey backpacking 220+ miles in the California Sierra Mountains, Christy encountered freezing temperatures, pelting hail storms, and losing her way, but found trail family, incredible views, and experiences that would change her life forever. Hiking up and over ten different mountain passes gave Christy a lot of time to think about why her nine-year marriage was falling apart, gave her the chance to truly embody her individualism, time to make new friends, and the strength she would need on and off the trail. Her life could never again be the same.
This is one woman’s account of the three weeks she spent on the iconic trail.

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From Readers Favorite: “... a compelling non-fiction adventure story of finding strength in the face of adversity and learning how to believe in yourself.”

#1 Amazon New Release

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