While I was away in Sydney I really missed Caitlin and Clint, and I was so happy to see them again that night when my flight touched down in Brisbane airport. For dinner Clint had made us marinated roo kebabs, and I finally got to have the aussie speciality: The Sausage Sizzle. The sausage sizzle or sizzler as its known is a hot dog nestled in a slice of bread amongst fried onions and special sauce. It was everything id ever dreamed of and more! We spent that night drinking wine watching My Kitchen Rules and generally enjoying each other’s company. There is always an air of impending sadness in the days before a departure, and it felt like a blanket of melancholy had fallen on me in those last days of my Aussie adventure. It makes me feel sad that the people I hold closest to my heart, my family, live so far away (we span 3 continents).
On my last proper day there I spent the morning doing washing and preparing bits and pieces to pack. Clint had the afternoon off so we spent it together running errands and going to the pub (naturally). Clint’s got some incredible stories to tell for his 31 years of age, he should write a memoir – he’d give Hunter S Thomspon a run for his money! At 5pm we picked up Caitlin from work at the Princess Alexandria hospital, and went home to get ready to meet Ash and Kathy Rainbow (the family whose garden the wedding was in) in the city. After an eventful bus journey the three of us arrived in Brisbane’s West End, which reminded me of Glasgow’s West End slightly – it was trendy and vibrant. We had more than a few drinks at this bar called Hi Fi which was similar to Nice n Sleazys, full of loud music, rockers and hipsters and then we met up with the Rainbow ladies. We ate dinner at the Spaghetti House, an authentic Italian restaurant across the street, and I had a beautiful veal and gnocchi dish. The company, food and wine was excellent, and we continued the night with a pub crawl through some dive bars and ended up in a bar that wouldn’t look out of place in London’s Chelsea area. Clint bought everyone cocktails that were described as an adults lemonade, they were fresh and zingy and went straight to my head. Finally, since everyone was working the following day we left at about half 1am, and savoured a final amarula on the porch outside before going to bed with heavy hearts. In the morning I had an emotional goodbye with Caitlin and Clint, and Clint’s dad Lindsay took me to the airport so I could continue my journey to Dubai.
All in all, Australia was an amazing, memorable and life changing trip. I say life changing because I fell in love with it so much that I want to move there. The people and lifestyle suit me so well, I am a beach bum at heart. After spending 13 years of disappointing summers in Scotland, I *need* to live somewhere warm that doesn’t require 3 layers before leaving the house. I love how casual Queensland is, it’s perfectly acceptable to stroll around in shorts and a vest with no shoes, and hardly anyone bothers with make up or hair straighteners which suits me just fine.
This is why I love travelling, how do you know you are happy where you are if you haven’t experienced life in other places?