Thursday, September 26, 2013

Living Life...

...on our adventure in Australia! Ryan and I had a chat before we left about how maybe we're finally actually living life and not just getting through it. Australia really felt like a huge turn toward a new beginning in our life. Only our second major trip together, and we packed it full of random places and adventure.
We started in Brisbane where we stayed with a close friend and her husband who are currently living there for a few years. What incredible hosts! Every day brought new things to look forward to, from seeing kangaroos in the wild for the first time to even eating kangaroo steak.

We checked out Steve Irwin's zoo, which was so much fun.

Then Ry and I rented a car to venture out on our own for a week, and we ended up driving over 5,300km (over 4,000mi) in just 8 days. On the opposite side of the road!

We stopped at random motels without setting anything up ahead of time, so not like me. But the spontaneity was actually a lot of fun. What will this hotel be like? What restaurants are nearby? Turns out they only have motel hotels, motels with the amenities of a hotel. We totally didn't need to bring more than our toothbrushes and some toothpaste. Everything else was provided! The only booked hotels were for Cairns (by the Great Barrier Reef) and Sydney. The view from our room in Cairns (pronounced Cans):

Which had a huge bat population right outside our room. They are the skunks of Australia, and super loud too. Yuck! I stepped in bat poo. Cairns sucked as we were totally scammed out of our trip out to the reef, and a tropical storm came in keeping us in our room with the noisy stinky bats outside. But we rested up and headed out into the outback:

A whole lot nothing for three days. And yet it was gorgeous and peaceful. We even ran into a couple from Alaska working at a truck stop since they ran out of money traveling the east coast. Random! The names of places were so interesting I had to snap a few shots of signs:

We even drove through a cave at the Jenolan caves:

Really bad pic, but I was juggling my phone and the real camera and obviously not very well.
Anyway, I booked a fancy hotel in Sydney since we've never done the fancy hotel thing. Whew we're we under dressed! But the bed was comfortable and we rested up after touring Sydney for a day.

We are breakfast at the botanic garden, which was beautiful, then took a tour of the opera house:

Then we headed back to Brisbane for a couple more relaxing days with Ari and Matt. On the way we stopped at a coastal town for lunch and then stopped for gas. The gas stations rent out surf boards:

Once back in Brisbane we caught a laser light show as part of the Brisbane celebration, and spent an afternoon with the Mini Man, who invented and builds his own engine system for minis only. Super cool guy, and his place was full of minis and various parts!

It was so nice to have home-cooked meals the last couple of days, and Matt and Ari are fantastic chefs! We enjoyed watching them whip up new things for us to try each night.

*Sigh* Our last morning there, eating Wheat-a-Bix and honey for the final time. Sad, but we were excited to get back home to the pups and work and life.

The trip was fantastic, and I think we did live it to the fullest. It didn't feel quite so bittersweet, which I really expected it to so it surprised that I didn't feel more sadness. Of course it would have been that much more fun with Korbin in tow, and we all talked about him too, but being without him doesn't we can't enjoy ourselves and our time together. I still have bucket list items to check off my list (like shark diving), and I can still do those things while remembering Korbin. He would want is to live life to the fullest. So I have to do my best to do that for myself and for Ry each and every day. Because each day brings new adventures, and because I got a lotta love to give.