This is the first blog entry I have written in Australia, so before I dive in, let me fill in the 3 month gap to my previous entry. After informing working work that I would be leaving to begin my adventure, I purchased my flights and started saving up the money for all the extra things I would need. I applied for my working holiday visa and began researching places to stay. I got recommendations for pretty much everything, from insurance to banks to mobile phone networks.
On the 11th of November I booked Melbourne Metro Hostel in North Melbourne. It was a toss up between there and Base in St. Kilda, but what finally swayed me was the view of the city skyline from the roof of the hostel, not to mention rooftop BBQ's.
My last day of work was the 23rd Decemeber and but before I finished, the whole office went out for a leaving / christmas meal. What happened at that meal was amazing. Its a month later that I'm writing this and I still cant find the words to talk about it. Thankfully, there is video evidence of the whole event already available for your viewing pleasure. This will be uploaded to my videos section.
Needless to say, just about every single person I know blew me away with their generosity by contributing to the most astounding leaving present ever, a new phone and some insurance money to go with it. Special mention should be made here to my best mate Scott Salisbury, who organised the whole thing, not to mention set up the single most awesome website ever at iandownunder.co.uk where people could leave the most touching goodbye messages ever.
On the 7th January I had a goodbye leaving doo in the centre of Newcastle, where again, so many people came to say goodbye to me. It was a fantastic night and the perfect send off. The 8th was spent recovering from the 7th, as well as having some final family time to say goodbye.
Then the 9th of January arrived, my leaving day. At 5:30 I boarded the first of two flights totalling 27 hours travel time to Melbourne Australia, from where this entry is written. The flight was actually a lot easier than I was expecting, with pleanty of fantastic entertainment and movies, and I also managed to get plenty sleep. Aside from the obligatory crying baby and women who couldnt stop caughing the whole flight, it was actually enjoyable and somehow I landed wide awake and refreshed in Melbourne.
And it is in Melbourne Metro Hostel where I write this first blog entry, after spending the day sorting out most of what I needed to get sorted. I have already created an Australian bank account, and walked from the bottom of the CBD at flinders street up to the top where the hostel is. Pleanty more to come, but I think I'll sign off here.