Day 235 and we were all up and ready by 9ish as we had to checkout by 10. The first thing Burns and I checked was the football scores on the internet. Newcastle were down which made us both laugh, and even Luke, who would admit he's not a massive football fan. For breakfast I had a 75 cent snickers and we then got a taxi to Fishermans Wharf. After looking at the shops it was time for us to head to IHOP (International House of Pancakes). As we got close to the place, it was obvious Helen was excited. She had been hyping this place up for what seemed like the entire trip so our expectations were high. I ordered 2 chocolate chip pancakes and a fry-up. The menu seemed odd as it made out that you got the pancakes free with the breakfast? The portions were massive and I didn't finish my pancakes. All in all though, I was not too impressed with the food considering its called The International House of Pancakes. We had planned to bike across the Golden Gate Bridge today, but as the weather was crap (cold and windy) we chose to walk over it. In the taxi on the way to the bridge, the Eastern European driver tried to kill us by doing a U-Turn in the middle of the freeway. To make matters worse, he couldn't complete the U-Turn and had to reverse in order to go forward. Cars were screeching to a halt behind us and the driver finally pulled away but seemed rather rattled by what he was doing. After surviving this we made it to the bridge where we walked across and back in about an hour. Back at the hostel we sat on the sofas as we knew we had all evening to kill before our night bus. Burns and I watched more basketball and once it had finished we went to the Greyhound terminal and got on an earlier than expected night bus to LA. On the bus I had a Mum, daughter and a baby sitting behind me. As soon as the bus started moving the baby was screaming and crying and both Helen and I were getting irate. The baby then made some horrible smells which made me feel sick. Luckily I slept for a while so didn't endure it all trip. Helen barely slept a wink and was exhausted by the time we arrived in LA at 6am.
Day 236 and we arrived at our hostel Banana Bungalow at 6am but couldn't check-in till 2pm. I wrote my blog and sorted some photos on the sofas while the other 4 all fell asleep. After 2 hours or so reception opened and we enquired about going to Universal Studios for our last day travelling. Burns was in a weird mood due his lack of sleep and was completely lost in his own world when people were talking to him. It actually really annoyed Luke and I and we decided not to ask him anything to difficult to understand. The first ride at Universal was The Mummy rollercoaster, and Helen got so scared at one point she lashed out with her foot when scared and cut her toe open. On the Backdraft tour, the girls were jumping and scared of the falling walkways and the fire. Burns thought watching the girl's reactions was better than the rides so far. We noticed that the park was full of Fat Americans, and could see why as all the food was burgers, popcorn or fried chicken. Other good rides we went on were the Simpsons 3-D where we watched classic Simpson moments while in the queue. Another animated ride was Shrek 4-D! this involved us wearing 4-D specs and again got people jumping out their seats. My favourite ride of the day was Terminator 2 in 3-D which involved us being part of the movie and having actors portray Sarah and John Connor. I knew Helen wouldn't like it and was proved right when I looked over and saw her asleep amid the explosions and gunfire. The final ride was a tour of the House of Horrors which was hilarious mainly due to Laura and Helen getting scared so badly. People in costumes would hide round corners and jump out at them. Helen looked relieved when the thing was over. After a long day in the sun we got a taxi back to the hostel and recounted some of Laura's best 'Coopisms' which made us 4 laugh. In the hostel Burns and I watched what would be our last basketball game and then we went out for dinner. As it was our last night we didn't mind splashing out on food, so went to an Italian called Maggianos where we found out lots of famous people eat. The waitress warned us not to order full size portions as the place is designed for groups eating together. Luke and I shared Pasta, Helen and Laura shared Pasta, Rich on the other ordered Half of the Spaghetti Meatballs. When the meals came, Luke and I were disappointed with our limited food, while Rich had a bowl big enough for 2! The waitress was amazed in the end that he ate it all and gave him a cookie dessert as a well done present. He felt ill as a result of all this food and struggled to walk home. In the hostel we went to bed at about 12 knowing it was our last night in a dorm.
Day 237 and I was up at 930 and after packing for the last time we checked out and sat in the lounge waiting for our shuttle to the airport. All we did for the morning was go on the laptop, eat, read and sit in the sun outside. Burns and Luke were pleased to see the weird guy who talks loudly on Skype was at his laptop. At about 1 we got a shuttle to the airport and on the way we discussed our favourite places and favourite activities. This started a debate about whether the best activity can also mean that it was the best place. One thing we all agreed on was that Hat Yai was the worst place we had been but couldn't decide on the best. Once at the airport we checked our bags in and then had some food. We played some cards for the last time, P&A which I won and declared myself the best player over the 8 months. On the plane we were all sat in the same row, but I was at the end and stuck next to a weird old man who had extremely hairy ears. He was English, so I was amazed when he asked if I was Australian. He also kept asking me questions when I was clearly watching a movie. The nail in the coffin was when he fell asleep he leant his arm all over my arm rest, rolled his head towards me and snored very loudly. Even Laura a few seats down with earphones in could hear and she started laughing at my situation. I did manage to get to sleep and woke an hour before arrival time. We had really bad turbulence as we came into land after 40 minutes of circling Heathrow as the air traffic was so vast. Once in the terminal we quickly got our bags and met up with our families. We could see them waving from miles away and Helens family even had a banner with 'Welcome Home Helen' on and a balloon. The drive home I seemed to be talking forever telling Mum and Dad about things we had done and what I was going to miss. When I got home it was a very strange feeling unpacking the bag and realising that I was back home and to the reality of no job and no money and no more blogging to do.