Monday, May 11, 2009

Why I Love Australia

On a bitter cold afternoon in February I crossed the Whitestone Bridge to JFK. I was on my way to the sunny shores of Australia. Little did I know of how much I would fall in love.
Other than seeing more of the world, this was my main reason for going:
Look at those eyes. Can you blame me?

The first few days we didn't do much. We stayed at Paul's sister Louise's place on the Gold Coast. It was rainy off and on so we spent a lot of time hanging out with Louie, her partner Jason, and their dog Milly. We ate lots of Paul's favorite foods. Fish. And. Chips. Then we picked up Paul's father and family friend, Louise, at the airport and headed north to Noosa where his sister Renee's wedding would be. We got to go for a walk on the beach at sunset. romantic.I took some pictures for Paul's mom, so I didn't get too many of the wedding for myself. I did manage to get one dorky shot of the two of us though.
In the days after the wedding we went to some local beaches. We spent time with Paul's whole family over those days. They're good people. They made me feel right at home.
The pictures don't really do the beaches justice.
Paul and I both didn't have sunglasses. He bought these. His mama didn't like them and hoped I would join her in convincing him not to buy them. I couldn't help her though because I thought they were hilarious! Even better was when he shaved to look like this:I couldn't stop laughing.

We decided to rent a car to see some stuff on our own. Since Paul is just a little baby boy it was less expensive for me to drive. And this was about how I felt driving on the left side of the road:
We went to Springbrook National Park in Queensland
Beeeeeeutiful. What's the matter? Do those mushrooms look blurry? You'd better get your eyes checked. Ok, it's not your eyes. Damn my camera! These beauties were everywhere! They weren't really cooperative with my picture taking though.Whatchu lookin' at Willis?

We drove to some other areas. Damn roundabouts got me a little flustered at times. We drove to Byron Bay in New South Wales. During the summer this area of Australia is very lush and green compared to South Australia. Oh my. Here's a fine Australian specimen. Come to mama. Oh yeah baby. It's hard to see in this picture, but there were a group of school kids doing some sort of lesson on the beach. It's a hard life those Australian kids have.
Don't know where this beach was, but it sure was pretty. We had it all to ourselves for a while. Till this little guy came along. He fascinated me. He fascinated everyone who walked by actually. Our private beach was suddenly invaded....every passerby was equally as fascinated as myself by this puffer fish. I took loads of pictures of him. Paul got bored of all my picture taking and threatened to drown himself if I didn't stop. He's threatened that more than once. I just pretended not to hear him and kept on taking pictures. Eventually he came back. A few days later Paul's mom, family friend Louise, Paul and I drove down the coast back to sister Louie's house.

We stopped at several beaches. Peregian Beach on the Sunshine CoastThis is my favorite photo. This is what happens when Paul and I get stuck in a hot car on a road tripIt ain't pretty.

We flew to Paul's home town. For all the time I've known him Paul has talked about Adelaide. Now I understand Paul. Now I understand.

Moana Beach, Adelaide
A trip to Maslin Beach, Adelaide with the beautiful Brandy.
Ohhhhh he loves his girl.
Can you blame him?
He also loves his roast chicken and chips (almost as much as fish and chips, but not quite).
So does Miss BrandyAre you gonna share Dad?
Of course he shares with his girl. I accept that I'm only second fiddle to his first love.
Us two girls get acquainted. Brandy's not so sure about me. I slather some chicken grease on my face and she decides I'm alright.
She still likes her boy better though.
My favorite shot.
No wait, this is my favorite shot.
I have a lot of favorite shots.
Another reason I love Australia. Wine.

McLaren Vale. I tried to get some good shots of the wine region, but I just wasn't able to capture the feel. This famous wine country is really far from Paul's parent's place. It took us a whole 20 minutes to get there. And, the wine tasting was really expensive. Can you believe they charged us zero Australian dollars? What a rip off.

Oh Australia. Beautiful men. Thousands of kilometers of stunning beaches. Good family. Rain forests. Crazy loyal cattle dogs. And free wine? Damn those Australians. They sure know how to woo a girl.

To be continued....


Briget said...

I just found you through some blog or other, and damn! Now I'm homesick! My Mom was Australian (Dad was stationed in Sydney, met and married her and brought her home to Ohio). I have relatives living in Canberra and scattered along the coast from Sydney to points North. I feel your pain about the driving! The most shattering drive of my life was from the coast to Wollongong on Christmas Day, with about a thousand drunken Aussies all going reallyreally FAST on this narrow, curving, shoulder-less road...

But enough. Great pics. Great blog. Have a fabulous trip Down Unda!!

Haley Cross said...

Wow! Looks amazing! This is definatley high on my list of places I must see in my lifetime!! Beautiful pics and awesome blog!! :-)

UrbanHippieMama said...

I can't wait to come visit!!! Great pictures, Shawna. Xoxo