It has been a great while since I last updated this blog. Time flies when you’re attending uni and working all the time. My roadtrip ended last October in Victoria, where it had all started four months earlier. I had two weeks left on my Working Holiday Visa and really wanted to sell my car, Gerry the Toyota. I was relieved and sad at the same time. My roadtrip was over and that meant I could finally relax and get used to the luxuries of living in a house again. But I was also reminiscing about the amazing time I’d had, and realising this was the end of an era. Bye bye loyal steed..
I flew home on the day before my visa expired, and stayed in the Netherlands for 5 weeks. I’ve been acting like a tourist, which caused my friends to laugh at me a lot. Some things seemed like I saw them for the first time, and I finally understood why people love the Netherlands so much. I went to The Hague, Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Utrecht. Also I went to Paris for one weekend.
Unfortunately this was a very bad timing, as I arrived on the night of the terrorists attacks. I had never been in Paris before, and this was a surreal experience. It was great to see my friend Ines again, and nice to spend time with her and get to know her family. But I felt so sad for all the victims and it also seemed weird to go discover a city while there were such terrible things happening.
On the sixth of December I flew back. My flight back was very stressful, since they sharpened the security in Amsterdam airport and it took way longer to walk through the borders. When I arrived in Melbourne, I took the shuttle from the airport to the city, and transferred to an uber with my 30+ kilos of luggage. With my woozy head I managed to order an Uber black, which costs almost twice the amount of a normal uber.. Tough luck!
Back in Melbourne my life started with two months of holidays. Fortunately I got some shifts at work, as I was quite poor after paying all my uni fees. It’s bloody expensive to be an international student here. I was gonna start my studies Early Childhood Education in February, and I signed up for evening classes, so I could work in the daytime. One week in advance of my classes though, I was told my uni doesn’t offer evening classes. Unnecessary to explain how annoyed I was with my agent, who explicitly told me there was evening school.
I had to change my working schedule, and thankfully this eventually worked out for both the family I work for and myself.
Now I’m in the routine, and I have realized I can manage being a student again. It was quite a challenge to go back, after four years of no school. The studies itself aren’t that much of a challenge. In fact they’re very easy. But it’s nice to be learning something again, and to still be able to be in this wonderful country.
My parents and siblings arrived last week, and yesterday I left to travel with them. We are in Wilson’s Promontory now, which is my favorite park in Victoria. The weather is crazy. Last night it started to thunder and rain, and it felt like the whole Maui van was gonna tip over. It’s one of those ridiculous campervans, that almost takes away the camping experience. Inside there are three double beds, PowerPoints, a sink with running water (hot and cold), a toilet and shower, a stove with a range hood, a fridge, oven and microwave, a television and then lots of utensils like a kettle and a toaster.
I was hesitating to bring a tent, to avoid going into shock with all this luxury. Fortunately I didn’t, because I would’ve probably been blown away. It’s good with this unpredictable weather to be inside and be able to watch television and sit and relax in the warmth.
On Sunday we walked the Lilly Pilly Gully track, to the Tidal river lookout point. Meanwhile it was raining now and then, and meanwhile storm was coming up. This made our walk very special. Also the paths were desolated, no passengers to be seen except for us. More storm and rain followed that night, and slowly all tents around us collapsed.
On Monday there was a group with Japanese people, who were trying to set up a tent. We witnessed them trying for a good two hours, before they gave up and packed everything away again. It looked hilarious, but that night there was so much storm that it was probably for the best that they didn’t stay.
Before we left, we walked the summit of mount Oberon and were blown away by the view (and the storm, it was actually quite dangerous up there). On our way out of the park on Tuesday we did the wildlife walk to see some emus and wallabies. We’d seen quit a few wombats at night, some of them were very large! It’s amazing to be able to show my parents and siblings where I’ve lived for the past 2.5 years.
Next: Mornington Peninsula & Great Ocean Road