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Two Love Birds Head Out To Spoil Their Wedding With An Early Honeymoon

How Ya Going, Mate?

AUSTRALIA | Saturday, 5 February 2011 | Views [1235] | Comments [3]

Howdy from Down Under!  About 10 days ago we left the cool and damp weather of Northern Vietnam with sunshine and beaches waiting for us in Australia.  First, however, we had to layover for 13hrs in the Bangkok Airport.  We could have gone into town and made a day of it, but we were pretty sure you would have to pay a transit fee of $25 each and having already seen Bangkok, we didn't think it was worth it.  So we settled in and found that the Bangkok airport is probably one of the better places to be marooned for a day as there are huge gardens outside, escalators to ride (with your trolly), and elaborate arrays of real orchids.  Oh and there is the added bonus that when you check in oh say 6 hours before your flight, the exit rows are not taken yet!  Score one for the tall guys; the added room made the 9hr flight to Brisbane quite comfortable.  Not to mention that we got to see movies on the plane we hadn't even heard of since we have been removed from the Hollywood scene just long enough to be that out of the loop.

Our hosts Jan and Chris, friends of Victoria's parents from their days in Saudi Arabia, met us at the airport and we headed (on the wrong side of the road of course!) North towards their home on the Sunshine Coast.  After being in 3rd World countries for 3 months, we were able to actually relax on the car ride in a way we had not been able to do for a long time.  We didn't have to fear that the taxi was overcharging us, or the bus driver was going to kill us all, and we weren't running illicit drugs.  But what was pleasant was the calm and order driving on the roads, particularly since nobody was honking their &*%@%!#$ horns.  Despite the wonderful scenery, we were still a bit jet lagged and couldn't help but doze off for a bit.

Life was tough for us on the Sunshine Coast.  We got to live in an actual house for a few days as opposed to the sting of hotels we have been staying in for the last three months.  We pampered ourselves with cereal each morning (yes as lame as it sounds, we both were craving just a simple bowl of cereal) out on the deck overlooking the ocean just two blocks away.  We had the great and unexpected pleasure of eating pints of Ben and Jerry's ice cream (Chunkey Monkey and Chocolate Fudge Brownie if you must know).  

We finished the days by walking the nearby beach or biking to the corner store to pick up some stubbies (that is a type of beer bottle for those who don't live in the Southern Hemisphere) and even went for a run! This being our first run in three months it was more of a slog, but we made it none the less. 

As a day excursion we hoped on a bus bound for the Australia Zoo, better known as the home of the late Crocodile Hunter Mr. Steve Irwin.  Steve had quite a following for his show and his legacy still lives on at the zoo.  

Most of the crocodiles he has caught over the years live there and partake in the daily shows the zoo offers.  In a large arena the crocs are lured around with chicken and fish to perform for the audience, lunging out of the water and grabbing the food just as the trainer drops it.  From even several hundred feet away, we could hear the snap of his jaws as he closed his mouth. 

Also in the reptile and spooky category, they had the worlds most venomous snake (the Inland Taipan) and a python named Lily that is 23ft long and weights 330lbs.

Some of the cuter things we got to see were koalas, kangaroos, wombats, and a 104 year old tortoise. For not being children anymore, we sure had a great time at the zoo and getting to pet a baby koala didn't hurt either. 

On the bus ride to the zoo, when we first stepped on, the friendly bus driver asked Victoria in his best Australian accent "how ya going mate?"  She froze, no doubt confused by the unfamiliar combination of "how are you doing?" and "where are you going?".  After an awkward pause she replied quietly "to the zoo?" and then said "by the bus?"  Thus was our introduction to what is probably the most fun accent to listen to and the loads of odd phrases that is Australian.  Texan is a close 2nd.

We took several day excursions to see the area which is amazingly green, lush, hilly and full of cute towns that could easily be a small town in New England if it weren't for the heat! Before shipping us off on a bus farther North, our hosts took us up to Noosa where many of the high and mighty of Australia come to be seen, including the heart throb Pat Rafter.  The town is on a beautiful beach surrounded by National Park land and city ordinances keep the high-rises from moving in.  They do however have a thing for round-abouts in Noosa, so if you find yourself driving a bus or large vehicle in that areayou can't say you weren't warned as they are everywhere! 

Alas our days of living in a home, getting home cooked meals, and having free laundry (we did three loads) had come to an end and off we went to explore the world's largest living organism and the world's largest sand island! Quite a bit to take in, but we are ready...it's tough being us. 

T&V

 

Comments

1

Hey Guys! Love the updates... keep 'em coming.

Are you guys going to China at some point? Believe it or not Gen and I are going to be in Hong Kong for the first week of May, and then I'll be in Beijing and Shanghai for a class trip for the second and third week. I figure you'll be gone by then, but if you have any suggestions on what to do there let me know!

-Danny

  Danny Feb 15, 2011 8:55 AM

2

Hey guys! I got your postcard, thank you! I can't wait to see you both and hear the stories that don't make the blog! love, t

  Taryn Ridley Feb 18, 2011 9:05 AM

3

Hey Travis & Victoria-

Got your postcard today (only took about three weeks). We're glad to hear you're still talking to one another. We always found traveling great for our relationship. I've spent the last hour catching up on your travels. We're totally envious although I am headed to Florida for 5 days to visit my mom. Not quite as exotic as your travels, but I'm looking forward to the warmth.

We're looking forward to August. Sounds like you guys are living high on the hog for the time being. Enjoy it.

Love,
Mitch & Martha

  Mitch Feb 22, 2011 10:19 AM

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