“journeys, like artists, are born and not made. a thousand differing circumstances contribute to them, few of them willed or determined by the will – whatever we may think.”
a mate gave me that one after he suddenly had to return from his own international travels due to a gnarly bmx bike crash up in whistler, canada. connected through helpx after i wrote his parents about a potential farm stay with them in NSW, he reached out to me via facebook and all of a sudden i had someone from australia, who i had switched continents with, going through the same traveling ups and downs i was…even down to the hostel living. this quote he shared, couldn’t be more relevant to me. naturally, i saved it away, knowing it would hold even more meaning to me once this journey truly smacked me in the face.
after a day of culture in melbourne, it was time to catch a flight over the sea and through the woods to where my heart would finally feel at home…and where my time spent would bring my trip to life. i know what you’re thinking…she’s in bloody australia, how has this not felt real?! she’s been gone for a month already doing awesome things! all true. however, when you dream of something for over half your life, then work on kind of planning for that something to become real…it takes a bit. add in some time travel, jet lag and home sickness…and the delay just doesn’t seem so strange. i actually hear it’s quite normal when you finally leave the nest and fly off into the great (mostly) unknown.
so there i was…pursuing a dream i’ve thought about most days since i was about 10 years old…finally i was here. only it didn’t feel like i was far away from everything i’ve ever known…my comfort zone, my family and friends, my ordinary life. i’d seen two great cities (syd and melbs), enjoyed a 3 week life in the country where blood, sweat and even tears were shed and still felt a bit lost in translation somehow.
enter…tasmania. i knew, well had a very strong inkling, that tassie was going to bring me into my trip fully…felt like it would push me into this adventure full force and make it my reality. turns out, sometimes gut feelings are spot on. as i descended over the lush green hills that reminded me so much of my methow valley home, i realised, tas was going to be epic.
i spent the night at a hostel called the pickled frog, which would end up being one of my favorite places, during my month long adventure there. the following day, i awoke with excitement knowing that my dear friend i grew up with would be arriving that evening. i took myself out to breaky at an awesome cafe that became a frequented spot for us and the hostel guest discount didn’t hurt my depleting bank account either…got lost in a book (#3 at this point in the trip) and impatiently waited for kary to walk through those front doors. reunited with my first real travel buddy, i was stoked for what tasmania would bring for us both…expectations were non-existent (as is the way i work these days), but had i built any up, traveling with kary in this amazing place, would have exceeded them all ten fold. we had the time of our lives together. our first week was spent at the frog, walking around drizzly hobart, exercising in the wind and rain (we are not fair weather calorie burners people, we are committed to fitness), eating delicious food, warming up with great coffee and conversation and enough laughs to count as at least two weeks worth of abdominal toning. after some catch up time on our own, we had organised a farm stay at a bio-dynamic blueberry farm about 35km south of the city in oyster cove. we were picked up by the mother and teenage daughter who would be hosting us for the next week and were whisked off into the hills of snug. weeding, organising the garage, cooking, etc. would be our “work”…along with drinking gallons of delicious tea, eating incredible vegetarian meals, cuddling with puppy lily and enduring a grueling rainy day indoors watching pride and prejudice, drinking…you guessed it, more tea, and snuggling up with pinterest inspirations on our mobile devices. if this is farm stay life, i was sold.
photo credit: Shar, our farm stay mum
we continued with our fitness motivation and had beautiful paths and bush to walk and run through. our lovely hosts took us out to bruny island on one of the few, but glorious sunny days we had on the island and i was quite literally, in heaven on earth. it’s hard to describe the moment when your dream coming true finally punches you in the stomach and makes it all feel real, but to avoid any emotional poetic waning, i’ll leave it at this: chest heavy, eyes filled with tears, one deep breath and boom…old life released and new life was inhaled in. everything had changed. the day on bruny will be a favorite for the rest of my life. kary and i, both avid photographers and determined to get all those perfect shots, were exploring our surroundings independently and really taking in all the joy and scenic amazement in front of us. it was a great day to say the least. good company, incredible beach with no other human life in sight, fresh oysters at a run down snack shack and standing on the edge of the earth…it leaves a girl speechless.
when you stand in a place you’ve seen only on a map and realise that the next land mass ahead is an entirely different continent, that you’re literally standing in a place most people never get to experience, it really puts life into a new perspective.
my adventure had truly begun…and we had only scraped the surface of the memories tasmania would bring…