When in Australia, keep the wildlife in the holes!*

Happy Holidays! 2017 has come to an end and we sure did have a lot of adventures. Before looking forward to what 2018 will bring we thought it might be a good idea to give an update.

For the last month we have been enjoying the Australian sun, food, coffee & company of family. To be honest we both really enjoyed the ‘quiet time’ in and around Melbourne. Sleeping in the same bed for more than 2 nights in a row. Being able to eat home cooked food (Remo especially enjoyed the taste of some typical Australian desserts), having a certain rhythm to the day and catching up with family and friends.

Having a quiet time doesn’t necessarily mean we were lazy. When looking back I think we can even classify the last month as a busy one. We filled out a lot of paperwork, made our travel plans for Victoria, did a pottery workshop at Matokie Clay Studio, wandered around in Melbourne’s awesome suburbs, saw a netball & basketball game, played backyard cricket and we welcomed someone new into our travel family! Now don’t worry, I’m just talking about a car.

We bought a bright blue Ford Falcon who’s going to drive us around Victoria and Tasmania on the Ford Falcon Adventures. Up till now we have been very happy with the newest addition to the travel family and to be fair we didn’t just buy a car. The boot was filled with extra camping gear, cooking utensils AND a fishing rod (hooray!). Once Remo saw that fishing rod, hands were shaken, and the deal was sealed. (We also found the underpants and ID card of the previous owner).

Before we knew it, it was time to celebrate Christmas. We chose to celebrate Jesus’ birth in the mountains while doing the Grampians Peak Trail. We covered a total of 36 kilometers and a lot of height meters in three days. So, our Christmas eve & day was one of a kind. To make it a bit more festive we carried some red wine and freeze-dried carrot cake with us up and down the mountains ? (next to litres of water ofcourse). Although we had a lot of fun, I must admit that for me, Lisa, it didn’t really feel like Christmas. The sun was shining, we had a blue sky, were sweating a lot and everyone was in a summer holiday mood.

This first experience in the Australian outdoors was also about us getting to know the wildlife a bit better. I got bitten by a bull ant. When I felt the bite, it hurt so much that I wanted to cry. I also wanted to get the ant off my leg but then I saw it was still hanging on to my flesh with its golden coloured ‘teeth’. The mark of the bite was red and itchy for another week! When I asked doctor google what to do about it I almost fainted when I read what the possible consequences of such a bite could be. 
Note to self; ignore doctor google in the future!

The next day, on our last day of the hike. Two emus crossed the walking track right in front of us. One of them, I assume the baby, decided to come to a halt and look at us. I kept perfectly still until the bird started moving in our direction with some speed and urgency. I tried to keep calm and be quiet but I just started screaming my lungs out. Remo started throwing sticks at it, but we were standing in the bird’s blind spot for a while so he couldn’t really see us. We survived, but it didn’t help to overcome my natural dislike of birds. Anyway, I am keeping the wildlife in the holes* after this. Want to avoid trouble at all costs.

Before going to Portland to celebrate New Year’s Eve we went to Nelson and the Lower Glenelg National Park. We thought it would be fun to do a canoeing trip during the last days of the year. We rented a canoe and some barrels and went all the way from Sapling Creek back to Nelson. It meant 40 km of paddling on the same river. And let us tell you, that’s boring! We absolutely loved the camping but the paddling during the day was just dull! We definitely need more action. We saw a koala and tried to catch a fish (didn’t succeed). Possums tried to open our barrels to get to our food but that didn’t work out for them. Haha! But again an animal that we have to keep in the holes!*

We started 2018 in Portland with a carnival and huge fireworks shows while the best cover band we ever saw was playing in the background. Special is the word I was looking for to describe this. Bring it on 2018. Ready for the next adventures and challenges!
*literal translation of the Dutch: “in de gaten houden”
English equivalent: to be on the lookout, to keep an eye on

2 thoughts on “When in Australia, keep the wildlife in the holes!*

  1. I meet a lot of travellers here at Fairfield, and I love to follow many people’s travel blogs after we meet … but the majority I read for a few episodes and then tend to lose interest, or they simply stop. I love reading your blogs! You write so well, and I love the little Belgian / Dutch insights you include which gives it such life. Well done! Visiting my homeland I guess does also increase the interest level. Will look forward to continuing to follow your travels, and your writing. Murray.

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