So with our last few hours left before we board our flight, it is time for reflection... Two months ago today on the 4th September we left Guernsey for the start of our travels. Today we fly to New Zealand. In those two months or 8 ½ weeks or 61 days we have travelled from Guernsey, to England, Scotland, Dubai before travelling across China for 14 days- scaling The Great Wall, marvelling at the Terracotta Army, sightseeing Shanghai and Macau and observing Hong Kong from every view point. We travelled from North to South of Vietnam for 15 days- seeing the wonders of Halong Bay, the old city of Hue and getting a tailor made suit in Hoi An, then it was time to fly to Indonesia where we had an extended stay of 25 days, for which was more like a holiday that travelling, we got to meet our friends Shaun and Jodie for 10 days where we chilled and drank copious amounts of Bintang. We also visited Jakarta and scaled an active volcano. Then we travelled to Flores and met the Komodo Dragons and swam with manta rays, to the Gili Islands, and back to Bali which in the end seemed like we had been there for ages.
We aquired some noises which seemed to stick with us. In China it was the disgusting sound of people raiding the back of their throats to produce a big greeny which they would let slam on the concrete. In Vietnam it was the non stop ear shattering noise of car/bus/ bike horns hooting and beeping their way through every road. Indonesia was I was the animal noises which you would hear at darkness- still no idea if it was a frog or a bird, it's noise was like umm well like a buzzer on a tv quiz show saying the incorrect answer 'err rrrr'. But I would also like to say the lovely noise of a bottle of Bintang being popped open.
We know we are very lucky to have the opportunity to go travelling. We have both gave up our jobs, which was very hard for me as I knew I was throwing something really good away. We also know we are lucky to have found each other in the first place, as we both don't know if we would want to travel alone, or at least it would be a different type of travelling. (I would move abroad in the sun and work in a beach bar, and Shan would be a ski instructor somewhere (obviously) cold).
However I have to be honest. The first time we went travelling 3 years ago, we were young and although we had saved tons of money, we preferred to look for our accommodation when we arrived and stay in cheaper accommodation, although it was clean it was mainly at the lower end of the scale (except in KL and Singapore). I had mentioned flights between destinations but it always seemed to expensive and also we wanted to see the countries so we chose local buses, coaches, and trains. This time, we are too old for that, we have planned ahead and booked everywhere, and we have picked nice hotels, all with air con, swimming pool and as many stars attached as we can afford. And only a few times picked a luxury coach or a train, everywhere else we have flown, which in fact is not that expensive.
It is also tiring, there is so much travelling involved, just to turn up somewhere that you could just have read about and been happy. But saying that we have done more that we expected and seen more than we imagined. It truly is all an experience that no one can take away from us.
Now off to the airport to get our flight to Auckland, where we plan to find work and a flat and stay for a few months, before travelling around and finding more work.
Thank you everyone who has had the patience to read this blog (and here's a shock revelation- Shannon has NOT even read all the blogs yet. I have been tempted many times to delete him from the blog, but he is here in person and sharing these experiences with me, so I guess I should include him, the cheeky monkey). But seriously- thanks for reading the blogs it means a lot to us (me).
Goodbye South East Asia it's been fun!!