…to Australia

Posts include days 284-463 in reverse chronological order. Click to read each short story.

Largest Earthquake in Modern History

I was driving to a gas station in Port Hedland when a 6.6 earthquake shook the area. The credit card machines stopped working and the town was shook up. I was about to drive a few hours north to camp at Eighty Mile Beach – directly across from the epicenter that steamed from the ocean.

Hiking in Karijini National Park

I hiked at Dale’s Gorge in Karijini National Park. The red rock canyon surprised me with natural pools and waterfalls, as well as lots of green life growing throughout. Then I found the most beautiful camping site, and it was free!

Journey to the Center of the Earth

I had never rock climbed or rappelled, but this experience going into the center of the earth was once in a lifetime! We went all of the way into a class six gorge in Western Australia. This was in the top three things I’ve ever done.

Storytelling

I camped two nights at Cheela Plains station and had a great time! They offer hikes on their private property, which have incredible scenery! The Wall was so unique and I couldn’t believe that I was the only person there! I also met some interesting people and got into my “storytelling” mode.

Camping at Cheela Plains

I hiked in Exmouth and enjoyed the beach before heading east. Then, I camped at Cheela Plains Station, where I went on a stargazing tour. I had the opportunity to photograph the moon & met some great people.

From Underwater to High in the Sky

I had a packed day that started with snorkeling in the Ningaloo Reef, where I saw some massive creatures – even a shark! Next, was a flying high into the sky on a powered hang glider! It was easily in the top 3 most amazing travel days.

Homesick

Sometimes solo travel feels incredibly lonely. I had been out of my home country for 5 months (the longest ever) and I was missing family, friends, and familiarity. I never thought I’d miss routine, but in that moment, I wanted something stable. I didn’t want to keep making major decision every single day.

Panic in the Ocean

I dived at the Navy Pier in Exmouth, an intermediate site. I had a horrible time – the conditions were terrible, the currents were strong, and water kept getting in my mask. Then I panicked.

Nature’s Window

On the way to Kalbarri in Western Australia, I stopped at a pink lake! The next day was full of adventure – an ATV ride and then a strenuous hike at Nature’s Window. The work was worth it to see the incredible scenery!

Pinnacles and The Hazards of Getting a Facial

I walked around the pinnacles, a couple hours north of Perth. They were really interesting to see and scientists don’t know much about them. I also finally figured out what the “hives” were on my face, neck, and shoulders that Benedryl wouldn’t cure.

Prison History and Stories in Fremantle

The nighttime prison tour at the historic Fremantle prison provides lots of good history and stories of some famous criminals. The first thing the convicts had to build was their prison! I also met an awesome Airbnb host who had unique travel stories.

Quokkas – The Cutest Animal!

Quokka’s might be the cutest animal I’ve seen! They live on Rottnest Island, just outside of Perth, Australia. They’re friendly and playful! I loved my selfie photo-shoot with one little guy! If you’re in Perth, you must go to Rottnest Island!

Exploring Perth, A Hidden Gem

While in Perth, I was able to go on a bar tour, check out a market, see the botanical gardens, visit the Mint, and do some self-pampering. Perth has been one of my favorite cities to visit!

My First Footy Game

As an American, I had no idea what Australian footy was all about. I went to the Optus Stadium and watched a game. It was a blast and was exciting to watch! I scored a ticket in the 5th row and was invited to the VIP room!

Days 357-360: The Goats Are Loose!

Just then, I noticed Billy and Apple standing to my left…outside of their pen! I panicked. I hadn’t closed the gate to their property, and they could escape the whole property. I set the food down and raced twenty feet to the gate and closed it. I noticed the first section of the electric fence that was near the metal gated fence had fallen. It was still making a crackling noise, so I knew it was live. My heart started racing! I was terrified the goats would run away.

Days 348-349: Am I Being Loured Into a Bad Situation?

I ended up in the corner of the yard in an old indoor/outdoor shed full of random tools. Dust and rust covered most of the items. There was a dummy dressed in old clothes that was hunched over in a strange position. It looked like something out of a horror movie. I started to freak out a little bit as Allan continued to follow me around the isolated corner.

Days 323 – 329: Just Keep Living

Sometimes it’s forced at first, but in order to live and find happiness again, you have to live. You may not feel like it. You may want to wallow in your emotions. But you have to keep going. You have to pick yourself up and force yourself to be part of this world. Eventually, it won’t be a chore.

Days 308-309: Solo Travel, But Often Not Alone

I used to work with a guy named Daniel at an industrial supply company in Los Angeles. At one point, we were both supervisors in the office, in departments that were next to each other. I remember one day our system went down, and representatives couldn’t access any information about orders. Being one of theContinue reading “Days 308-309: Solo Travel, But Often Not Alone”

Days 303-305: Who Names a Swimming Pool After a Prime Minister Who Drowned?

It was Easter morning in Australia, and I was still at the house in Ballarat, where I was house/cat sitting. Carolyn and Tom woke up early and headed off to Jess’s house. I didn’t want to intrude on family time, so I hung back. I got a lot of writing done and played with theContinue reading “Days 303-305: Who Names a Swimming Pool After a Prime Minister Who Drowned?”

Days 301-302: Hiking and Learning about Australia

After two weeks of house and cat-sitting in Ballarat, Australia, the homeowner returned from her holiday. Carolyn offered me to stay for a few more days, so I could figure out how to get my prescriptions from a doctor there, and then offered me the opportunity to spend Easter with her family.  Carolyn and IContinue reading “Days 301-302: Hiking and Learning about Australia”

Days 287-293: House and Cat-Sitting

My house/cat-sit was about to begin in Australia. The homeowner, Carolyn, showed me how to compost food scraps in her worm farm. It was a lot easier than I thought. She also showed me the clotheslines in her backyard. I was surprised to learn that many Australians don’t have a clothes dryer. I asked CarolynContinue reading “Days 287-293: House and Cat-Sitting”

Day 286: Attack the Argument, Not the Person

Ballarat, Australia, is four hours ahead of Vietnam, so the jet lag set in, making it hard to wake up in the morning. After sleeping in a bit, I made myself a bagel for breakfast. Carolyn, the homeowner of the house I was about to watch, looked surprised. She said, “Americans really do like bagels,Continue reading “Day 286: Attack the Argument, Not the Person”

Days 284-285: My First House and Cat Sit in Australia

Singapore airport was beautiful, clean, and efficient. I stopped at 7-11 before heading towards the gate for my flight to buy some snacks, a sandwich, and a bottle of water.  Scoot Airlines doesn’t provide any complimentary drinks or snacks. At the register, the man behind the counter told me that I wouldn’t be able toContinue reading “Days 284-285: My First House and Cat Sit in Australia”

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