As some of you may be aware, I’ve taken a rather uncharacteristic break from writing on this blog, haven’t written anything since just before Christmas. Before that, it was November when I announced that I was Moving House in Australia.
In that post I also mentioned I had lots of decorating to do so I could sell my current house, and of course, lots of preparation to do in advance of the move.
On top of all that busyness, it has also been the six-week summer school holiday break here, so we have also had to try and squeeze in some chillout time, which we did do quite spectacularly. That’s quite handy really, because photographs of me decorating would have been quite a bore.
Instead, I can show you my holiday snaps…
A week later we drove south to New South Wales, staying in Byron Bay and visiting Brunswick Heads Beach.
Byron Bay is most definitely hippie town, a place for the alternative lifestyle. It’s very colourful…
In that second image, I am ‘dabbing’; no I don’t know what it means, my daughter made me do it.
You may have noticed that I’ve shown you lots of photographs, some of you may have even noticed the three Manta Rays in the ocean, but I’ve not really mentioned anything specific about the places. That’s because we’ve been to them all before. This was our fourth visit to Byron Bay, some of you may remember it’s where I saw my first ever venomous snake in the wild, and I couldn’t begin to count how many times we’ve been to Mooloolaba.
So you have heard all about these places before, there’s not much point in me repeating myself.
As I enter my 10th for year of living in Australia though, I am a long way from getting bored of visiting these places. Indeed, the longer I live here, the more I realise that I truly do live in a most wonderful part of the world.
And that brings me to my rethink about the Australian way of holidaying. Five years ago I wrote an article called Australian Holidays and Popular Destinations. I mentioned at the time that ‘many Australians holiday in a way that we would find quite unusual.
They will drive an hour or two north or, maybe, an hour or two in some other direction. Then they have arrived. That’s it! They’re on holiday!’
Well, I may have found that unusual back then, but here I am doing exactly that and loving it.
The reason I did find it unusual at the time is, I suspect, because I’ve always been used to holidaying from the UK. Rarely did those holidays actually take place in the UK, mainly because the weather is almost guaranteed to let you down. So instead they almost always involved a very short and usually quite cheap flight to another country with a completely different culture.
Once there, the week, or sometimes 10 days or two weeks, would be spent exploring the whole area, seeing new things and having new experiences. Every day would be thoroughly planned and every tourist attraction included so as not to miss anything out.
Sometimes these holidays could be quite exhausting!
Let’s compare that with what we often do now here in Australia.
We drive to a place that is reasonably nearby, avoiding the hassle of airports, taxis and car rental. When we arrive, there is no pressure to explore everything, we’ve probably seen it all before. So instead, we just go to the places we want to go to which gives us way more time to actually chillout.
What I enjoyed most about our time in Byron Bay, for example, was getting to the Beach Bar by around 6 o’clock in the evening for a couple of early evening drinks overlooking the ocean.
I’ve visited some Australian top tourist hotspots before, and all that seemed to be there was a beach, a bar, a few touristy shops and restaurants, a campsite and other holiday accommodation. I used to wonder what people would do all day.
Now I’m getting the hang of it; they catch a few waves, they chillout, they have a few drinks at the bar overlooking the ocean, then they have a nice meal at a restaurant.
Byron Bay is absolutely perfect for that, we all enjoyed an absolutely stress-free and chilled out holiday doing almost nothing except enjoying the hot weather, the wonderful sea breezes and the almost faultless blue skies.
It is a truly relaxing way of taking a break and when you get back home, you really do feel like you’ve had a holiday. Many Australians have been doing this for years; now we are doing it and we love it.
As predicted with stunning accuracy in that already mentioned moving house article written more than two months ago, you can’t do that under the UK house buying system, we will be moving in 19 days time on 20 February. So, did we manage to sell our current house?
Well, I’ll give you a full update on the situation next time. ‘When will that be, Bob?‘
Glad you asked.
That’s difficult to say, I’m obviously going to be quite busy over the next 19 days. Also, moving home means moving my telephone line and therefore I will almost certainly need to get involved with Telstra.
The last time I needed to do that resulted in, at 2836 words, the longest post I’ve ever written on this website. If ever you find yourself at a loose end, you might want to read it; it’s called Australia’s Biggest Telephone Service Provider, Telstra.
If you have read it, then you will probably know that not only will be busy over the next 19 days, but I will also almost certainly lose my internet connection for some time as well during this period.
Thankfully though, these days we have hotspots. Or maybe I should say ‘hopefully’, because I suspect Telstra will ultimately decide if I have a hotspot or not.
However it goes, I can always fall back on my Byron Bay mantra…