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2 year review in Englisch und Deutsch
2 years oz, who would have thought that I gonna last that long down here when i arrived on the 2nd Feb. 2005? Not me for sure! I was pretty happy to have this return ticket that always reassured me if things go not too well I can always run back to mama.
And here we go: I’ve seen so many things, I actually made it into every state and territory (even that I haven't been to Adelaide yet, but this will happen hopefully soon, Chan!) I started climbing, I at least tested the whole water thing with snorkeling and diving to make sure I’m really not into it and I settled now where everything began.
Back in Sydney since November and finally working as a landscape architect again I’m going to stay here for another while as my company is going to sponsor me. just come from a talk with my big boss about the conditions and feel finally free to start living a 'normal life' e.g. buying things that you could always afford to buy but you don't do it because there is no point in moving it around the country all the time like heaps of towels, a radio, big earphones for music at work....
I can imagine that not everyone at home is 100% happy about the final yes but I am! And it doesn't mean that I’m never coming back! But I want this possibility to decide when and where I am and that for I need to stay and work here and in a few years we see what's going on in Europe. So be happy for me!
2 jahre in Australien, wer haette gedacht, dass ich so lange aushalten werde als ich am 2. Februar 2005 ankam? Ich nicht, dass ist klar! Ich war ziemlich happy ein Rueckflugticket zu haben, dass mich absicherte immer zurueck zu Mama zu koennen, wenn Dinge nicht so laufen.
Und so siehts aus: ich hab so viele Sachen gesehen, hab es tatsaechlich in jeden Staat und Territorium geschafft (selbst wenn ich immer noch nicht in Adelaide war, aber das passiert hoffentlich bald, Chan!) ich hab angefangen zu klettern, zumindest die Wassergeschichte mit Schnorcheln und tauchen mal ausprobiert um sicher zu gehen, dass ich es wirklich nicht mag und nun lasse ich mich dort nieder wo alles begann.
Seit November bin ich zurueck in Sydney, arbeite endlich wieder als Landschaftsarchitekt und werde auch noch ne Weile hier bleiben da meine Firma mich sponsorn wird. Komme gerade von einem Gespraech mit meinem grossen Chef ueber die Bedingungen und fuehle mich endlich in der Lage, ein ‚normales’ Leben zu leben. Wie z.B. Dinge zu kaufen, die man sich zwar immer leisten kann aber keinen Sinn drin sieht sie staendig durchs Land zu schleppen wie Handtuecher, ein Radio, grosse Kopfhoerer fuer Musik auf Arbeit...
Ich kann mir vorstellen, dass nicht jeder zu Hause 100% erfreut ist ueber das endgueltige ja aber ich bin es! Und es meint ja auch nicht, dass ich nie mehr nach Hause komme! Ich will nur die Moeglichkeit haben, zu entscheiden wann und wo ich bin und dafuer muss ich hier bleiben und arbeiten und in ein paar Jahren sehen wir dann mal was in Europa so abgeht. So freut euch fuer mich!
Happy Birthday Anke!!!
Time for another English report about my last adventures. I've covered my time in Alice until mid August in German with my last few texts. So just as a summary for you folks: Alice is a wonderful friendly town and despite of my bicycle accident I had a lot of fun and met heaps of really nice people! And to everyone who told my it's boring or dangerous - shut up, get on the Ghan or a plane and try it yourself - I can only recommend it!
After my last shifts in both my opal shop and the bluegrass restaurant I had 1 day to organise and pack befor i set off on the Larapinta Trail. That's a walking treck once again through the beautiful West MacDonnell Ranges. I joined the party of my work friend Cella, her husband and a friend of them. In 5 days we covered 3 of the 12 trail sections up peaks, along ridges and through beautiful gorges. It was good fun and again very satisfying but also my hardest walk so far. Hiking through an arid environment is very different to all my walks through rainforests or often shady bush land. Not only that this was the week when it finally became springtime with temperatures around 30 degrees celsius. It also meeans you don't cross creeks and waterfalls all time or if you do they are dried out. Every 2 days you come to a water tank and your pack gets very heavy again. But your reward are awesome sunsets and -rises, the views at all and of couse to only meet other people once a day. So if you're looking for a little adventure next winter - this could be your choice.
Back to civilisation I had another 2 nights in Alice before I left for Mimili - a little community just after the NT/SA border. I stayed there a bit longer than 3 weeks to babysit 2 gorgeous little girls - Frankie just turned 1 whilst I was there and her big sister is 2 3/4. Their mum Claudia and dada Tom are running the community arts & crafts centre and are the MSO (doing all the office work for the council and lots more). As there is no childcare provided for the little ones they usally have to go to work with their parents everyday - what is of couse pretty boring and makes you a bit 'uneasy'. Anyway we had a good time and everyone of you who knows how crazy I am about kids can imagine how much I loved 'my' girls. And their parents, especially with Clauds I felt we're already much longer friends. As the whole family is about to leave Mimili I'm sure we will catch up at some time in Victoria.
Being already in South Australia I decided to sneak into Coober Pedy - the worls's opal capital just 3 hrs down Stuart Hwy. A very weird place, most of the town's underground as people are living in so called dug outs to protect themselfes from the very high temperatures and because this area is literally treeless, so there was no building material accessable in the old days. I lasted there exactly 36 hrs and was kind of relived to find myself sleeping at my friend Chandler's place in Alice again after 2 nights underground. But never the less it was an interesting day with tours in and around town and into a working mine. And good food. As there are more than 40 nations living in town you can find some nice restaurants. My first night I dined at a Greek tavern that even turned up on TV lately and the other night I went to an Italian.
A few more days in Alice , a last farewell and off I went on an Adventure Tours trip up to Darwin. (that's the company my tour guide housemates in Hobart are/were working for) What? Antje joined a tour group? Yes I did because I choose it was the more interesting journey than going 24 hrs by Greyhound coach. The Ghan timetable didn't suit me and the plane was only $30 less than a guided 3 day tour including food and camping. It was alright, we had some fun and I already knew that I'm coming back to the best part of this trip - Katherine Gorge.
So arriving in Darwin I turned around after 2 nights to go back down to Katherine again to catch up with my friend James I met half a year ago in Perth. Because we enjoyed this Nitmiluk National Park so much we actually spent 3 nights at the gorge and another 2 nights at Edith Falls, the northern part of the NP with swimming, bush walking, canoing and relaxing of couse.
Now I'm back in Darwin since 2 nights and haven't done much yet. (But finally my tax return) I'm still acclimatising, to both the hot and humid wheather of the build up season and being back in a city. That's it so far. I'm going to the movies tonight - Deck chair cinema and will keep you updated at this plase hoping for some comments or emails about what happens in your lifes.
Hugs and kisses yours Antje.
P.S. to all the Erfurt folks - you don't believe who I run into last sunday. Marco Weiss (former Boeckmann). I crossed the road and someone waved at me. Couldn't believe it. Had a nice stroll over the sunset markets and enjoyed the sunset at the beach.
Ok guys, what's going on in Alice Springs? Living here now 2,5 month I have to say, I still love her and this little town in the middle of the dessert is really everything but boring. The other concern some people had wiht my announcement moving to Alice was about my security. Well, I had a little problem with that. But not because I'm living in a town with 25% indigeneous people and not because I'm living in a mainly black area within this town.
My bad luck could have happened everywhere in Australia where people are generally not used to cyclists on the road. About 4 weeks ago someone knocked me over with his car. An ambulance and police showed up, I came to hospital for about 4 hours and a few stitches and then they seemed to hope "she's just a stupid backpacker". You should think you get some support from the police when the accident was obviously not your fold. But not here. It took me ages to get at least a case report number and name+number of the guy who's responsible.
Well, I think, I get it sorted now. Sent my claim to the insurance yesterday and this f*** lazy guy finally agreed to pay at least half the costs for a new second hand bike. He always tried to make me feeling sorry for him because he's out of work. In a town like Alice where you literally fall into work every 50m? No, no sorry for him!
Until 2 days ago I was riding the bike of a girl from my shop (Thanks again Maureen!) But I found someone fixing my loved Malvi - a maroone Malvernstar racing bike from the last iceage. Well maybe not that old, but fairly old. Because this other guy really freaked me out with never calling me when he should tell me what's going on I still want the money! That's fair enough, isn't it?
But that's enough - now some nice things here.
The Alice really tries to make winter (and it is winter - we had a lot of frosty nights) fun. First there was the weekend with the Finke Dessert Race, apparently one of the hardest racing tracks down under. I had to work but he whole week before was already bustling with very interesting people in town.
With the next weekend I was more lucky. The Beannie Festival was in town and I'm now a proud owner of a funny red beannie from the world's biggest beannie exhibition.
This was followed by the Alice Springs Show. Yes, every oz town has its horse race and I'm absolutely not into it. Especially when they are having a public holiday for that. I remember the boring Regatta Day in Hobart very well and decided not to go. But had a day off anyway. And so hat my friend. So we tookk the car and flee to the West MacDonnell Ranges. Yes, I've been in the Macs before but they are just great again and again. So we had a good night out and then a fun drive with a nice bushwalk and picnic.
Two weeks ago there was another race - Alice Springs Camel Cup. Ever been to a camel race? You should - it's really funny! Expecting to know nobody there, because everyone told us before you only go there once, we bumped every 10min into mates (not only the new ones from the pub night before). My explanation - it was very cold out there. So you just get pissed and every year it's your first time again.
And: I'm making plans again. I'll leave Alice end of August to go to Mimili Community in SA - half way from here to Cooper Pedy. I'll be there babysitting for about 3 weeks. Am really excited!
Selling opal now for quiet a while I still haven't seen a mine yet. So after Mimili i will go to Cooper Pedy for a few days and hopefully staying in a dugout underground hostel. This will be in the middle of September. As I ha enough cold by then I'll go up again afterwards. Probably taking the Ghan (a big train) to Darwin and there... ??? That are more than enough plans made.
And there is even another plan. In Alice starts the 230km long Larapinta Trail through the West Macs. Together with a girl from work, her husband and their friend I'll hopefully walk a part of this. These 5 days will be between Alice and Mimili. I already realised how unfit I became with only having my 20min bike ride to work everyday(and back again, sometimes back to town for working at the restaurant at night as well). So I started "training". The MacDonnell Ranges are an amazing mountain range that is going right past Alice Springs. The way from the airport into town goes through the Gap that devides the range in East and West Macs. So i walked on Sunday from work there, climbed the Gap and walked along to Mt Gillen, Alice's highest peak, decended there and went home. And now my sore mussels make me walking funny. So I have to get in shpae again for the Larapinta Trail!
I know, this is already a pretty long report but there are a few more things I want to share.
One) I'm really disappointed. It was raining and drizzeling for 8 days and I still haven't seen Todd River flodded.
Two) Have you been to cinema lately? I watched "Ten Canoes" (for non aussies: the first movie in indigeneous language, telling the story of people from Arnhem Land) Well worth watching!
Three) I missed a wedding of good friends at home. All the best Antonia+Sandi!
Ok, now you are released - hugs and kisses for all!
Love yours Antje.
Alice, who the f*** is Alice
I know, I was very quiet for a while - sorry for that!
But back to life, back to reality! (I hear some of you moaning, even online she's quoting songs...) After 1 1/2 month in Fremantle/ Perth i had to accept that there won't be a posistion as a Landsape Architect for me. The scene over there is really different to Sydney. In WA it's mainly small businesses that can't afford another person that's only allowed to stay for 3 month.
So every now and then I had one of those little jobs from the hostel when someone needed a hand in his garden. But at all I grew really lazy - my activities were pretty much moving from my bed to the swing at the hostel courtyard, to the cappucino strip, to the beach, to the weekend markets or the pub. At least I found the indoor climbing after a while and even a buddy. Twice I hired a bike and once a car with some girls from the hostel. But that's it.
Slowly running out of money and tired of doing nothing I got a job on a wheat farm 3 hrs north east of Perth. I was supposed to drive a tractor. But because it wasn't raining yet I couldn't start seeding. So I did pretty much everything there on the farm. I really liked doing some physical (and outdoor) stuff again but the farmer and me had one big problem: I didn't want to hit his 400 cattle and 6000 sheep with big plastic pipes to get them moving through all the gates or onto the scale or to get their hormon (!) injection or whatever. So I lasted 8 days having the same discussion again and again and went back to Freo at the end.
Now I needed a new plan. But what? I only knew where I don't want to go - back to the east coast because i've been there long enough, down south because it's too cold now, to Darwin or up the west coast because I was sick of backpacker life. And I didn't want to stay where I was. Even that it might have been easy to get a waitressing job in Freo.
So what's left? Alice Springs! Everyone told me I'm crazy - too boring and too dangerous. I arrived last Saturday, so it's 8 days now and I really love it! On day #4 I started waitressing in a nice (and a bit pricy) restaurant and I might get a daytime job in an opal shop as well. Have a second interview tomorrow.
The only unsolved problem so far is where to live. I'm looking for a share house again. There are a few around but you need to find them. It's not like walking along King Street in Newtown (SYD) and reading all the offers at the traffic lights. But I'm working on this. Yesterday i changed from a tourist-milking-mashine-backpackers to a really cute one with only 30 beds. It's operated by an aussie/german couple that seems to love it.
Today's task (despite of working from 4:30pm) was finding a bike. Solved! A bit out of Alice was a lawn sale and I walked there and rode back. Found a racing bike for amazing $10! Because it was a cancer fund raising and they gave me a pump and a helmet (that's for granny!) and helped fixing it, I gave them all my coins and happily I cycled "home".
These are all the news from me. I hope all of you are fine and as happy as I am! Love yours Antje.
p.s. And because Alice is such a small place I already bumped into an old Hobart house mate as a guest at my restaurant.
finally i'm a bit more active again. At least the last two days. On Monday i've been on Rotnest Island where we hired bikes to get around. And yesterday i've not only been swimming quite a bit, no, i've been climbing! After beeing angry with myself for just hanging around i went to Mountain Design asking for a ledge here in Freo. There is none and obviously also only one for whole Perth. But anyway: I got my shoes and chalk bag out of my pack in the storage room and told a friend here in the hostel. She was keen to come with me, so i waited for a few more days until her day off from waitressing. Whilst waiting a Swiss guy joined us as well. So the 3 of us had some awsome hours on the ledge. Can't wait for Kathi's next day off!
These are all the news from WA - still have no job but enjoy life. The last days we used to have big cook ups like we did in Newtown. 5 trays of pizza one day, 3 pans of 'Makaroni of the Alps' the next. It's really funny. We started cooking for 2 or 3, inviting people to join us because it was too much. Then these people want to cook for us... Today is BBQ time. Maybe another swim in the Indian Ocean and probably a bush walk with the Swiss guy on Friday.
Love - Antje.
I had an interview today what was very good - felt quiet confident and liked boss and office. But: he's not looking for a person right now. There might come a job up within the next weeks or might not. He will have work in the middle of the year.
ready steady go!
A big question whilst i was planning my blog was: what about all the aussies? Not many of them will understand, what i'm writing here. But i also want you guys to know, what's going on in my life. The solution i found (at least for the moment) is: from time to time there will be english texts. You will find them in an extra category - 'english', of cause. So you don't need to be bothered with all the 'annoying' german stuff.
So for this time only: what did i tell the others?
- that i try to keep better in touch this year
- i'm still learning how to blog - so there will (hopefully) be a lot changes within the next time, especially i need to load pictures
- there is a possibility to subscribe my blog - 'Abbonieren', this would mean, whenever i'm writing anything, you'll get an email. But of cause you can also just click on www.myblog.de/ossie from time to time
- 'Kommentieren' means making comments to what i wrote
- 'Gästebuch' is for your comments without concern to what i wrote.
- as far as i know, none of you is writing an own blog or homepage, but just to make sure - My site is 'friends only', i don't want to appear in any bloglists. If you want be mentioned on my blog, just tell me.
I reckon, that's it. So have fun and visit me when ever you feel like.
you're reading the german as well?
what are your german lessons doing?
Love yours Antje.