January 26, 2013
me and the 'roos chilling on the beach in Cape Le Grande National Park
Australia is the home of so many things I love. Apart from the people that make me who I am, this country makes me who I am also.
I know that some people find January 26th hard to celebrate and I totally understand why. I actually think 'Australia Day' should be moved to another date but I still like to look at why I'm celebrating. I like to celebrate the country I live in and I'm so VERY grateful to live here and be an Australian.
I've been lucky enough to travel a decent portion of the globe when I was growing up due to having a travel agent/tour group leader as a mum ("Happy 21st darling, you and I are going to Hawaii for you Bday present! Gee, thanks mum!") and then did the wandering Europe with a backpack thing for a couple of years in my early 20's.
Hubby and I met when I got back to Australia, and instead of a big wedding we chose to travel South East Asia for 2 months as newly weds (we won't talk about the food poisoning in Vietnam, the near death experience in a small plane in Cambodia - actually to call it a plane is very generous! Or the robbery in Thailand ie. great honeymoon!) We've also had a couple of return trips to Thailand and Bali whilst living in WA as it was so close and cheap to get there and we thought why the hell not (this was all pre-kids by the way).
I was also lucky enough to tick something big off my bucket list. For my 30th Bday I gave myself the present of walking the Camino de Santiago also known as The Pilgrimage (a 5 week, 900km walk across Spain)
Now before, you start thinking yes, and why must we hear all this? Stay with me, I'm getting somewhere with all this.....
I always thought, I would 'find' myself somewhere out there travelling the world. But I didn't. I had fun and felt both challenged and extremely fortunate and grew as a person but I had to travel my own country before that feeling of 'finding myself' began to peek it's head out. I'm still getting there as I'm sure we all will be 'still getting there' until the day we die. But seeing 'my country' and parts of it I hadn't even imagined were there, was when I started to feel more 'me' than I had ever felt before.
Me in Morrie, Undarra Lava Tubes National Park
Now I know travelling Australia in a campervan for an extended period of time is usually done in the grey nomad years, but hubby and I had no mortgage, no kids and we were basically sick of the rat race and the city and said 'let's do it now before we get too settled'. So that's what we did. We packed up and sold all our furniture from our rental house in Brisbane and took off in our new home affectionately known as 'Morrie' (short for 'Van' Morrison)
Now we only made it halfway around this massive country of ours (about 12 months of travel) before we got stuck in WA. The sheer beauty, the uncrowded beaches, the relaxed regional living on the coast, kept us there and somehow we ended up with a baby, a mortgage and a second pregnancy that moved us back to the east coast to be closer to family.
Our favourite beach near our house In WA, Peppermint Grove Beach So, what I am trying to say here, in a very long winded way
My dorky hubby and some friends, Hamilton Island
Home of the thong (the shoe, not that other uncomfortable thing), the Ugg boot (whether you choose to wear them outdoors is your business, I won't comment), the most spectacular and varied landscapes, Cate Blanchett, Geoffrey Rush, Toni Colette, Claudia Karvan, the Esky, pavlova, lamingtons, the meat pie with sauce, Aussie lingo - 'She'll be right mate', Aussie Rules (not a huge fan but my husband would kill me if I omit that), Russel Crowe, Hugh Jackman, Patty Rafter, Thorpie the Thorpedo, Cadel Evans, opals, WA pearls, the kangaroo, the koala, the platypus, the stubby cooler, Tim Winton, Snugglepot and Cuddlepie, an amazing public health system (I know there are complaints but it really is fantastic, move to America and then have a whinge about it), Larrikinism, The Great Barrier Reef, Gotye, Powderfinger, Sarah Blasko, the Akubra, 'The Castle' (Dad! I dug another hole), The Australian Country Women's Association, Neil perry, Maggie Beer.....Sorry, I'm getting carried away and I haven't even scratched the surface....
The iconic Ugg Boot
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