Howdy everyone! I am officially 17 days away from leaving for Australia and I am TOO FUCKING HYPE. I haven’t slept well in MONTHS because I am so excited. I have already considered packing already BECAUCSE I AM SO EXCITED.
I basically have everything done that I need to do before I leave. I think. I HOPE. I do have to update my driver’s license since it expires on my 25th birthday AKA the day before I leave for Australia. Probably shouldn’t try to go to another continent with an expired license. Other than that, I have to finish a paper for grad school, do some online reef training video class thing, pick up my scuba card, and pack!
I’m kind of stressed about packing. I wanted to do a carry on and a backpack but let’s be honest there’s no way in hell I’ll be able to fit everything for two weeks into a carry on. I am a textbook over packer. ADDITIONALLY, it’s winter in Australia and while Townsville won’t be cold, I am going to Sydney for a few days and it’s a bit chilly there so I’ll need jackets etc. However, I am worried about checking a bag because I have to switch planes like 5 times and I don’t want them to lose my luggage. Whatever, I guess I’ll pack anything super important (prescriptions and a bathing suit) in my backpack and just hope everything turns out ok!
So here is what the trip will look like:
July 12th I leave Cincinnati in the eve and land at LAX around 10:30pm their time (1:30am my time). I then fly from LAX to Sydney and land at some god forsaken hour on July 14th (like 5am or something Sydney time). I then have a 3-hour layover in Sydney before heading up to Townsville and landing at about 10am Townsville time on July 14th. Which is like 6pm on July 13th in Ohio. I’m going to be all kinds of jet lagged. It’s like July 13th is completely gone from my life this year. Anyway. I honestly don’t even care how tired or jet lagged I am. I’m going to be IN AUSTRALIA. I refuse to sleep ever.
The actual school part of this trip doesn’t start until Monday and since we land Saturday in the morning, we will have a couple days to explore Townsville. Don’t worry, I already made an itinerary. It should be noted that I will be travelling with two other girls so don’t worry everyone (grandma and grandpa)! I won’t be alone in a foreign hemisphere.
The hotel we’re staying at is RIGHT on the beach. The beach looks beautiful and has a sidewalk lining the whole thing which means I will definitely be going for a run at some point! I also found a really nice Olympic length swimming pool that is only $5 for entry so you bet your sweet ass I’m going to go there and get a swim workout in too. I have an Ironman to train for folks.
I figure our free time during these two days will be spent hanging out at the beach and exploring the little city. Also, I already found the Townsville Brewery on the map sooooo.
The actual course part starts on Monday July 16. We are meeting at the Reef HQ Aquarium which is also where we sleep for most of the course!! I’m not really sure what the exact itinerary is for the week but I think a lot of days will be spent doing projects in the field, hiking, and activities in the water. I think we get to snorkel/scuba 4 times during the trip. Although I just found out it’s NINETY DOLLARS to rent gear each time (although that is in AUD, so really it would only be like $70 USD). Lord have mercy! OH ALSO, I think one of the days we get to go to sea turtle hospital and a koala sanctuary. And two of the nights will spent on some remote island in cabins. Am I worried about the size of the spiders that probably live inside of the cabins? You’re god damn right I am. Have you ever seen a picture of a Huntsman Spider? You could wrangle one of those big bitches up and make them a pet. They’re bigger than my dad’s Maltese, Sophie.
The weather in Townsville looks like it’s about 80 and sunny every single day so that’ll be lovely! Also, the aquarium is also right by the beach which means I will hopefully be able to run in the morning before the course starts some days.
After the course is over (it’s 10 days long), my two friends and I will be heading over to Sydney for some tourist-y fun! I of course made a very detailed itinerary which includes seeing the Opera House and bridge (obviously), A WHALE WATCHING CRUISE IN THE HARBOR, the Taronga Zoo, Bondi Beach, and tons of amazing food.
Anyway. This was just a little more information about my trip for anyone who is interested! Stay tuned because when I get back I am going to write the LONGEST blog post ever, complete with a billion photos of fish and koalas.