Saturday, March 31, 2012

Sad Day. Last Day.

Sigh. And so the vacation comes to an end. My camera broke while I was navigating that Great Barrier Reef, so pictures will have to wait, but I can safely say that when I woke up this morning (to enjoy the Australian early morning one last time), what was I greeted with but a sunrise over the ocean? (I swear, the view from Hotel Liam and Katherine's place is in-credible when it's sunny out!)

It certainly didn't help this whole "I want to move here" bit. Although I've awoken about 7 hours before my 1:50 PM flight, I'm tempted to just conveniently miss my flight back to the US. I. Simply. Love it. Here.

But alas, you know me. Darn practicality getting in the way of things. You know I'll still be two hours early for my flight, to allow sufficient time to check in and do some airport browsing (people watching, last minute gift shopping, etc.) before I have to finally hop on board my flight to LA.

Sigh. I feel like this post is going to be inundated with sighs. Australia is just one of those countries that people HAVE to visit. Although I wish it weren't so far away, I think that element does add a degree of intrigue to the country. Sure, I haven't visited ALL too many places in the world, but I know what I like and I. Love. Australia. The country is so BIG... by nature, there is just inherently so much to see and do here. And no two cities are seemingly the same (unlike, well, pretty much all of Western Europe)- I think that was one of my favorite parts of this trip... seeing just how unique each city I visited was.

In no particular order, here are a list of my "favorites" from this two week adventure:

Favorite accommodations: Hotel Liam and Katherine*!!
Favorite activity in general: homemade pizza night w/ Kathy, Liam and Hazel!
Favorite city visited: Melbourne
Favorite adventure activity: skydiving
Favorite tour group: Ocean Freedom (for the day at the Great Barrier Reef- this tour group was AMAZING and I can't stop raving about them to any/everyone!!)
Favorite Australian word/slang: "mossie" (for mosquito)... SO CUTE when you combine it with the Australian accent

Here are the things I could've done without on my trip:

1. My sunburn- I've never really gotten sunburned before, so I actually thought this could be a fascinating, exciting experience. I mean, the burn, the peel, the tan that comes with it... it's like a whole new world to me. Yeah, no. It kind of blows. I got pretty darn burned during my day out on the Great Barrier Reef... yeah, yeah, yeah- our guides kept on harping about this whole sunscreen business, but I've never had to use sunscreen before! Why start now? All I have to say is... big mistake. I look disgusting- one Indian lobster if you will.

2. My broken camera- so thankfully, this happened towards the end of my day on the Great Barrier Reef and my last day of "real" travelling, so I think the pictures are still preserved. But still. I could have done without this whole adventure to a sand island for one or two pictures... thanks to the choppy waters we had to navigate through to walk the last few meters to the island itself and the wind blowing sand every which way possible, I can safely say my camera is ruined. *Cross your fingers that the pictures are preserved!!*

3. That's it!

All in all, I have to say... although there are quite a few other places in the world that I still want to explore, I wouldn't mind coming back to Australia for another visit. There are still just so many things to do, places to see, and the like that you just can't cram into a two-week vacation time... darn all those European travellers I met, who were traipsing about the country for 5-6 week stints. DARN THEM.

In any event! Haha- clearly, no bitterness. But at the end of it all, I'm actually not COMPLETELY dreading returning to life in the US. While I do love me my vacation, I also do love routine/habit, so I'm looking forward to returning to my normal, everyday life in Chicago.

Ha. Did you like how I really tried to put a positive spin on my return back to the US? What can I say? I did TRY!

See you all if (oops, when) I return!

*Hotel Liam and Katherine accommodations were of the five-star variety. I would highly recommend you give them a ring if you need a place to stay... hahah. Just kidding. I love you guys!! Thanks so, so, so much for letting me stay with you while I was in Sydney!! Seriously, let's make this whole neighbors thing happen when you guys move to the US!!

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