Hi Everyone,Im sorry there hasnt been a blog in a while. the main reason for this is that I have stopped moving for a while over the holiday period to spend time with family. I arrived 16th Dec into Brisbane on the Oz bus and said goodbye to my new friends, then jumped on a train and headed out up north to an area called Burpengary to meet up with my parents and my aunt and uncle.I'll be honest after traveling by myself for so long and being kinda out of control it was a very sobering experience being around family again and having the responsibility to act civilized. For their part my aunt, uncle and parents were a delight. I haven't seen my aunt and uncle for 8 years and have always enjoyed their company - and of course it was a rare gem to meet up with my parents too (who admirably resisted the urge to mother me too much - although my dads reaction to my tattoo was priceless)Even though I had arrived I still felt the urge to be alone and travel and spent most of that week traveling into town and randomly meeting friends from my travels! I don't remember Brisbane at all from the last time I came here. Infact I was surprised just how lovely it was. Currently Oz's largest growing city and 2nd oldest colony (built to accommodate families rather than convicts) it really is a gem. With year round sunshine and temps around 30 I am slowly falling in love with it. Actually I am loving the suburb I am staying in - but more about that later!I had my interview for a volunteer position with "Crikey" Australia zoo, and was accepted provisionally, and visited the sunshine coast (Caloundra and Noosa)On 21st I caught a plane out to Melbourne to be with my parents and Brother/sister inlaw over Xmas. Again desperately clinging to my backpacking lifestyle I opted to stay in a dingy hostel above a horrible pub in the middle of Chinatown!Melbourne certainly wasn't the utopia I remembered but I still have to say it is a very livable city! Well livable except for the militant Victoria flies which no matter how often you swat them they return to lick, suck or vomit! Visitors are often seen walking down the street making violent head spasms, waving their hands wildly around their head and blowing wisps of air out of the corners of their mouth! This is known as the Bushman salute!Christmas was lovely - its been about 4/5 years since I saw my older brother and have to say Ozzie life has really treated him and his family well. You can see how full of life his kids are and really happy their life is here. Australia really can do that to you!The main preoccupation in Melbourne seems to be shopping - and my does it have a lot of shops! Expensive but nice!After a very boozy Christmas eve with Toby (my sister in laws brother) Xmas day was spent recovering and mostly sleeping. After this day I decided to lay off the booze for a week which did wonders. I did a modicum of sight seeing but realizing I would be back as a full blown tourist kept it to a minimum! Though I did get to see the Casino that I missed last time. Ha ha and tried my luck at Pokies - which I still have no clue how to play! Also I watched in disbelief at how complicated they have made 21! New Years eve was spent alone (my parents left 31st) and still not drinking I enjoyed the fireworks over the Yarra river with 500,000 revelers - and then watched disgusted as about 20 people all decided to vomit at the same time! Yuck!1st I flew back to Brisbane and got dropped off at my Cousins where I will be for the next few weeks. I have always enjoyed my Aunt and Cousin both of whom are fun, witty and great company! I love My cousins husband Craig and their kids too. They live in a suburb about 1hr north of Brisbane called Morayfield. This area is very close to the national park/forest belt and away from most built up areas. The house has a huge garden which as u can imagine has a lot of wildlife too! From here it is about 40 mins to the sunshine coast 30 mins to the national park and glasshouse mountains. It is an amazing place to be if you like the countryside and sunshine but still within commuting distance to the city! The plan is to stay in Brisbane for perhaps a few months. I hope with the zoo but if that doesn't work out I will find a job somewhere. Speaking of which I start tomorrow - so hopefully will get some cool pics from there :-)I hope you all had a nice break and cant wait to catch up in 2009!See ya!