Before Australia, I’d never heard of a cassowary. They’re a very rare bird, almost extinct, and the few left will be found in the Daintree rainforest. They’re quite something – jet black, 6ft tall with bright blue heads. It would be quite cool to see one, right? But according to the bus driver, “we’ve got about the same chance of winning the lottery as we do seeing a cassowary.”
Me and the girls had been keeping our eyes out the whole time we were at Cape Tribulation, but no luck. Then, on 8th April, 2016, the bus driver was blabbing on about something or other, and then mid sentence he stops, swerves the bus and shouts: “OH MY GOD IT’S A CASSOWARY!!!!”
We all leap to the left side of the bus, noses pressed up against the glass. There he is. He’s huge. I tried to take a photo but the picture quality is rubbish. Grace (Vet and true animal/nature lover) sheds a few tears. The bus driver says, “wow, this is a pretty special moment for you all.”
Back safe and sound in Cairns. Head to toe with mosquito bites but I survived the rainforest!
I got up at 6am to go for a run before it got hideously hot. About 4K in I came across the Cairns Park Run start line. Why not! I thought to myself. You’ll never believe it but I ended up coming first female and third overall! What a lovely start to the day. When one little boy finished he burst into tears. “It’s so hot!” He wailed. Bless him. I did a very slow jog back to the hostel and couldn’t wait to tell my Dad.
The rest of the day has been very stressful – trying to change flights, book accommodation but feeling like I’m getting nowhere with it! Annoyingly, when I want to change a flight, I may not hear back from them for up to 48 hours… To make my anxiety a tad worse, Santander Online banking is down. This is not ideal. I need to sort out my money before heading to Bali tomorrow.
The stress carried on into the morning of the 10th but by lunch time, I think I had sorted as much as I can. The thing about travelling is those at home merely see beautiful photographs – mountains, breath taking beaches, palm trees… They don’t see the organisation and stress behind it. They don’t see the mosquito bites, greasy hair and pot noodles. However, the stinkyness and simpler things are all part of it. You’ve got to embrace the shitty times too. It’s all part of the experience.
I’m excited for Bali. I’m scared for Bali. I’m not too sure what to expect from Bali. But I know I’m uber excited to have a bit of a yoga retreat when I reach Ubud!
I can’t believe Australia has come to an end. It has been better than I thought it would be. Although I preferred New Zealand as a country, Australia has given me life-long, heart-stopping moments that I will treasure forever. I was worried that the East Coast was just going to be a load of 18year old lads getting smashed every night. Politely dodging that particular species, I’ve made tonnes of friends, I’ve worked on a stud farm, seen the sites of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, seen kangaroos, fed wallabies, embraced the paradise that is Fraser Island and Magnetic island, seen Nemo in the Great Barrier Reef and stayed overnight in the oldest rainforest in the world. Thank you, Australia.