Saturday, February 28, 2009

road trippin...

in OZ!!  Hey guys!    
We had a GREAT drive down from Sydney to Melbourne!  It was so much fun!  We rented a car and took off behind the wheel for the first time in almost 11months!!!!  Lemme tell you, its super fun driving on the right side of the car...and SUPER SCARY for about ohhhh....several dayz!  Its really hard to adjust, but eventually, we did it!  Well that was after a bit of off-roading...and I don't mean for fun:) yeah, we rented a fantastic Toyota Corolla Hatchback...oh yeah...the hatch is Back!!!  We drove from town to town, sleeping in quaint little hotel/ of which Charles Darwin stayed!  We did some great hiking in the Blue Mountains(world heritage listed)...sampled lovely foods(I'm in LOVE with pies!!!)...saw tons of kangaroos right on the side of the road!!  and beautiful parrots...we sampled more delish food...went to the world's smallest rodeo(livestock contests, dog jumping, pimped out tractor racing...some with fire out the back, some bull riding, largest zucchini contests) THE WORKS! We even took an overnight hiking trip to our own private beach!  That was super fun...we even had a wombat chomping on grass right outside our tent!!!  It woke me up in the middle of the night...I thought it was Austin getting into the food rations...heeeheee!  You should have seen how gorgeous the beach was, and because you have to hike out...not a single soul was around...but no skinny dippin for us, the water was FREEZING!  haha!  Oh, and don't tell my mom that we almost lost the trail:)  

We had so much fun just hopping from small town to small town...all with funny names of course:) But all good things must come to an end...and by "good things", I just mean dropping off the conveniently tiny hatchback and exchanging it for a monster, 4wheel drive, manual shift, Champa Campa!!  

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

bet you thought...

I forgot about you guys!!  Sorry long time no blog.  I've been super busy with my travels:)  But I'm going to sacrifice a little time from a beautiful day in Sydney...for you:)  Because its worth it:)

So, if you haven't caught the "where-abouts"...we are in Sydney, Australia!!!  So far not so good:( But only b/c AP has a nasty viral infection living in his tummy, so we've spent most of the time so far sitting in the emergency room consultation area.  But feeling better today...must be the beautiful sunshine!!!  We will start our sight seeing off tomorrow, so you'll have to wait for news from down under later.  Right now, I'm going to tell you about a little fantasy land called Raja Ampat!!

After we left our friends, no let me rephrase that, after our friends ABANDONED us....thanks guys:)  hahah.  Well anywho, after they left, AP and I thought that we were too close to Papua to not partake in the off we went.  It took a few days of middle of nowhere towns but finally we arrived at our little heaven...Kri Eco Resort owned by Papua Divers.  Not to much surprise, I finally contracted a nasty bug myself and spent most of 2 days on my death bed...but by day 3 I was up and at it and squeezing my large western boootay back into some tiny little Asian if those things aren't hard enough to get into already.  For those of you who don't know...Asian sizes pretty much mean that there's no chance any westerner will fit in them:)  Think children's sizes:) 

Moving on...we jumped onto the boat and took to our first dive site.  CAN ANYONE SPELL WOW???!!!!  It was beyond fantastic...beyond amazing...I just can't find the words!  Let's see...there were:  Pigmy Sea Horses (not a very good link here, but look at AP's pics!!!), Manta Rays, Giant Clams that could swallow you with one gulp, Tasseled Wobbegong Sharks, Epaulette Sharks(walking sharks), tons of Nudibranchs, schools of HUGE Bumphead Parrot fish, and more fish than anywhere in the world...seriously, a scientist counted over 288 different species of fish on ONE DIVE!!! Now I'm no expert...but that's ALOT OF FISH.  And the coral here...just beautiful!!!  There wasn't a moment on any of the dives when I wasn't looking there and there, oh and look there...and look closely you see that thing....I was ninety-to-nothing down there...and just when you think it absolutely doesn't get any better, you hear your dive master go...tink tink tink against his oxygen tank to get your attention, he points, you turn...and right there not even 2 feet above your head...a Manta Ray(larger than 4 feet across in wing span) soaring above your head almost touching you...just because he wanted to say hi! WOW WEEE WOW...THIS IS WHY I WOKE UP AT 5AM FOR A SPECIAL "SUNRISE DIVE"!!!!

Every time we think about our diving experiences that we've had so far...Komodo National Park, the Gili Islands, Raja Ampat, Alor, Sipadan, Mabul, Cambodia, Thailand...we laugh because when we first started the trip, we weren't even sure if I was going to like diving:)  ahhaha!!!  Now you can't pull me out of the water, well that is if you give me oxygen first!