Tag Archives: adventure

Adventure Time!

27 June

On the 5th June I finished work in Sydney. I was sad to leave this job, being fairly settled. I know I’ve improved a lot since being there and I was working for someone I enjoy working for, with people I like working with, in a job I love doing. And the horses! I had become surprisingly attached to them. The turnover of horses is high, so this was quite unusual, especially for me, who has had quite enough of horses by the end of work, thank you very much. But I had grown to love checking over them at night, in their quiet solitude, and found they had all become my friends.

Sydney, however, had become stale for me. Whether this was due to my need of a break, the weather, the people, the way of life,the early starts, the tiny four walls I lodged in, the incessant use of sub-quality public transport, I don‘t know. But I was ready for a change, despite my reluctance to make it happen.

I set my new start date for three weeks after I finished, and planned an adventure. Well, when I say ‘planned’… I booked a flight. I boarded the plane with a hangover sufficient of my leaving night and landed in Cairns, where the mountains loomed, the sun shone, and tropical rainforest sprouted, green as you like, all around me.

I have much to say on this trip, but I just want to quickly summarise. I spent my time around Cape Tribulation frolicking in the Daintree Rainforest; sailing, snorkelling and diving on The Great Barrier Reef near Cairns; roadtripping around The Atherton Tablelands and Undara; generally stuffing as much into my time as I wanted. I came back to Sydney for a few days and then up to The Hunter Valley for a weekend of wine tasting, and here I am at my new job.

I built sandcastles until my knees turned all red and sore. Is that the best injury ever? I cruised down a river full of crocs. I saw paddocks jam packed with wallabies. I saw a rainbow so close you could put your hand through it. I saw an island in the shape of a crocodile. I saw where Steve Irwin met his stingray. I sang my heart out on a deserted beach. I tried to remember how to do cartwheels on another deserted beach. I saw fungus that glowed. I learnt where the Southern Cross and Scorpio was in a sky of crystal stars. I got hooked on sailing. I did some things that scare me. I wrote, I read, I was spoiled by sunsets and sunrises. I met an unbelievable amount of wonderful people, and a certain amount of interesting people. Saw some of the most incredible landscapes. I went to a factory that makes cheese AND chocolate (and ate as much as I could). I slept in my car, didn’t shower for, er, sometime, and remembered how much I love being a bum. I swam in hot water springs. I went to the outback (and got offered a job). I explored the world’s longest continuous lava tubes and hit my head searching for spiders (another great injury). I got woken up in my little car by dingoes howling. I danced behind the steering wheel while blasting music as loud as I wanted. I hunted for a great deal of wildlife. And saw a bit too. I dreamt a lot. I did enough thinking to help sort the old noggin out, and came to some realisations. I thought about some things I’ve never thought about before, did some things I’ve never done before, saw some things I’ve never seen before.

In short, I had an adventure. And I came back with this resounding in my head:

Oh, world! What have we done to deserve you?!


Posted by on July 11, 2013 in Uncategorized


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6 January 2013

I’m not sure how normal this is, but I get sayings and quotes and random sentences stuck in my head. Like songs. I find myself waking up with them, stomping them out with the beat of my footsteps, tapping them out on my leg, and chewing them over in a wonderfully circular fashion. I have a stockpile of them. One for every occasion, every friend, every mood. Even if I try to swallow these clichéd nuggets of cheese they still pop into my head, as desperate to prove their point as an annoying teacher. And that’s what they are, really. When I have to be brave, they become mantras.
When I first went to France, it was:
‘An adventure is misfortune thought of in the right way, misfortune is an adventure thought of in the wrong way.’*
It pounded itself into my brain: every time something went wrong, there it was, every time I had to take a deep breath, there it was, like ‘The Wheels On The Bus’ or ‘He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands’. It would relentlessly crop up when I thought I had forgotten it, and start spinning all over again. Then one day I moved onto something else, and now I think of it with a smile and realise how sane it kept me.
Perhaps when I have absorbed all I need it from a quote I can move on. Although I’m not sure what I have to learn from a few bars of arbitrary ‘yeah, yeah, yeah’s,’ which plagued me for years.
When I first came to Sydney, it was:
‘Sink or swim.’ And then in echoed whispers, ‘swim, swim, swim, swim…’
I haven’t quite moved on from this one yet. My head is just about above the water, but there is a lot of splashing.
More recently I’ve been thinking of the TV mini series, ‘Any Human Heart’, where a dying lady speaks of a time when she was down on her luck. She explains how she only had a few pennies, and she should have bought a sandwich, but she bought a bunch of violets instead. “I would never have remembered the sandwich…”
I think of this when I’d rather stay at home: when it’s too hard, or I’m tired, and my muscles are sore, or I want to be safe, or I’m trying to save money, or I just want to hide in my shell.
I’m not down to my last few pennies, so I’m not sure why it has stuck so vigorously. I’ve been thinking it is the prioritising of a memory over anything. But perhaps it is the way Jim Broadbent sniffs his own bunch of violets that he buys in memory of her. Or maybe there is just something about the rhythm of it that has found a groove in me.
I used to think words and music were two separate things, but they bleed into each other. I have just as many sentences on repeat as lyrics or tunes. Only good sentences, mind. The ones so beautifully crafted they carry their own notes with them. I hope one day one of my sentences may get stuck in someone’s head. Until then, I shall ‘stand on the shoulders of giants’. That seems like a good place to start. (Thanks Google – and Newton – for that one!)
* This is, apparently, wrong, but this was what got stuck. The real quote comes from GK Chesterton and reads, ‘An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered.’
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Posted by on March 20, 2013 in Uncategorized


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