Last night I couldn’t sleep and when I finally did I had the horrible nightmares again. Before I left Auckland I dreamt that I’d been sectioned in a mental insitiution and the doctors said they were going to keep drugging me to make people believe that I was crazy so that I’d never be able to leave. When Denise and Lance came to visit I was begging them to believe what I was saying about the doctors. That was a truly awful nightmare, but last nights was more scary than horrible. I can’t remember who I was with, but it was one of my friends and we were in some sort of cave. I knew something evil was in there and said we need to leave, then we felt it coming after us. I just about made it out, but as my friend was about to emerge she got dragged back in. Later when I returned home I felt like something was still with me. No-one believed my story, but then it started writing messages for everyone to see. We had a dish with some leftover sauce in it and a message began to appear as though an invisible person was drawing it with their finger. Just as things started to get violent I woke up. The Dutch girl in the bed next to me was shouting out in her sleep so I don’t think I was the only one dreaming vividly.
I got up and ready at 6am with Beth – she headed off on another trip, whilst I headed to the airport to get back to New Zealand. I knew I had a long day ahead of me, but at that stage I had no idea just how long it would turn out! The lovely coach driver, Geoff, got us back to Brisbane in just over three hours, then I waited for a shuttle and that took about half an hour to get to the airport. It was getting on for 2pm and my flight was booked for 7pm, but scrolling through my emails I found it had changed to 12:50am! As I won’t even land in New Zealand until 6am, the $90 I spent on a hotel was totally wasted. I spent the day laying on the comfy sofas, playing with the Rubik’s Cube and reading. One time when I was solving the cube I suddenly heard a round of applause – I turned around and an old man was actually applauding me. He and his wife came over to talk to me and I was on the verge of tears just because they were so nice to me and I was so exhausted. There was also an incident whereby a bottle of water spilled all through my bag and the most lovely Danish family came to my rescue. Sometimes peoples kindness really does touch me. I was really tired and miserable this afternoon, so I didn’t deserve people’s help, but they still did. It’s just a really nice feeling and although I can’t do anything for them but say thank you, I try and re-pay the kindness to some other random person when the roles are reversed.
The last couple of hours really did drag and I was so glad when we finally boarded the plane at 12:30. Then a major serendipity occurred; if I could have chosen any person on the plane to sit next to it would have been Michelle. I liked her straight away and we got chatting about our lives and current situations. It ended up that we were both heading for Hamilton so we got the shuttle together, and then as I couldn’t get hold of anybody, she invited me back to her daughter’s house and I had a lovely morning there with them.
Saturday 19th July 2014
I’m not entirely sure where I should end one day and begin the next. As I didn’t sleep it all merged into one, but I guess the morning for us began when the sun rose. At that point we were still driving up from Auckland; the fog was something else and the streetlamps made it look like fire. A combination of fog and frost actually made it look spectacular! Although we couldn’t stop to take photos, me, Michelle & the driver lady all ooed and aahed over it. When we got to the daughter’s house, her boyfriend was there too and we all sat having drinks around the table and chatting. It was really, really lovely. In one way the last 24 hours have been hell but in another way they’ve been completely enlightening – I feel like my soul connected to other peoples and that’s pretty cool.
Cuddling a Koala ♥
Australia Zoo and the Crocodile show
Today was my final full day in Australia and it’s been a great one to end the trip – Australia Zoo. We arrived just after nine and upon entering the park were greeted by an echidna, which we sat with and stroked and a baby croc, which we held. There was also a big, black cockatoo that we had a photo with. Then we started exploring and our first stop was the snakes where we saw; Taupan, Eastern Tiger Snake, Death Adder, Red-bellied Black Snake, Woma, Carpet Python & Green Python. Following that we went to the wombats. I’d never seen one, not even on a photograph, before I came down under and they’re so adorable! The next part was super cool – we went into the kangaroo & koala enclosures, got photos with both, stroked both and then joined one of the kangaroos on the ground, sunbathing. Next were the tigers – we watched one wandering around the enclosure, then as we walked around the corner, the two youngest were out on leads! I can honestly say I’ve never had a tiger walk right past me before so that was a new experience. We walked to ‘Africa’ to see my favourite animals – the giraffes ♥ One of them, Rosie, has just had a baby, Skye, so she was extra adorable. I watched them for quite a while before we headed back to watch the crocodile show, which was really, really good. They started with the bird display – the condor was my favourite – and then they brought out a pretty impressive crocodile, Mossman. Following that was one of my favourite experiences over here – I got to cuddle a koala ♥ He was so soft and so cute – I just wanted to run away with him! It was getting later in the afternoon so we went to see as many animals as we could fit in; birds, emu, giant tortoises (which really were giant! I didn’t think they were real at first), Crocodiles, Tasmanian Devils, Shinglebacks, Dingos, more koalas and otters. After the gift shop we jumped on the coach, went into town to grab dinner and then packed up at the hostel ready to leave in the morning. Tonight we’d lost the two Canadians and gained a German and a Dutch. They were both really lovely and we stayed up talking until about 11pm.
I can’t say that hostels would ever be my choice of accommodation, but it has been really interesting getting to know people from all over the world. In total we shared rooms with 1 English, 3 Canadians, 3 Germans, 1 Austran, 1 Dutch and 1 French.
This morning we had something of a lie-in – an 8am alarm! But as I woke up full of life at 7am I thought I’d get straight up and do my hair. When we were both ready we strolled through town and boarded the coach to Noosa. It is boiling hot today, but the coach was well ventilated so it was a comfortable 3 hour trip and I caught up with my latest book – Sharp.
We were famished when we arrived so we headed to the pie shop for food before walking to the hostel. The walk was hell! On the sheet they’d said it was 50 metres from the station… it was 20 minutes away. And it was up one of the steepest hills I’ve ever climbed. And it was scorchingly hot. I was half dead by the time we got there and this hostel is more how I imagined a hostel to be… we have 5 beds crammed into a tiny room, you have to go outside to use the bathroom and there’s no TV or anything else. We took a walk to the shops and I was immediately cheered up by the bookshops. The first one I found was my favourite; located in a hidden corner, it was crammed full of old books and the ladies who worked in there were so lovely. There were so many books I wanted to buy, but knowing that I have to repack my case in two days I made myself choose one – The Silence of the Lambs. I promised myself I wouldn’t buy any more but the next store had Virginia Andrews so I couldn’t resist picking up Seeds of Yesterday as well. We grabbed dinner at Zarraffa’s – the giraffe café (and I was even wearing my giraffe top.)
Arriving back I took a hot shower and settled more into our room by meeting our roommates. Another German – Susanne – who’s
absolutely lovely; we’ve been sharing stories of our adventures so far. And the other two girls are Canadian. I couldn’t make my mind up about the one in the bed next to me when we arrived – on the good side she was reading a Paulo Coelho so she obviously has good taste, but on the bad side she’d clearly been eating crisps in bed and I can’t stand food in bed. We didn’t speak to those two much and they’re only here for the one night anyway.
Any ideas? Identify one of the first three or translate the fourth?