So we have been in Melbourne for exactly a month today. The weird Asian day to day shinanigans seem a distant memory and that sweet sweet taste of Orange Fanta only visits me in my dreams....
We arrived in Melbourne at around stupid o'clock in the morning after an overnight Quantas flight from Singapore. Both so grateful to be on a proper plane after all our experiences in the Philippines and AirAsia winged prisons.
It was amazing to be greated by Michele, who along with the rest of the Sheperd family were opening their inn for us over the Christmas period. The fact that i hadnt shaved since Malaysia meant that i was looking quite like the birthday boy himself, Jesus Christ. Michele is a good friend of Katie's mum and had offered to put us up in Hotel Sheperd for a few weeks.... a month later, we are still here, and i bet they wish they hadnt offered!!
We were bowled over by the kindness and generosity shown by all the family here, and felt instantly at home. We could finally relax, knowing all the Asian drama was behind us and we survived to tell the tale!
In Vietnam, they eat dog. In this house they have a dog called Lilly. They dont eat her. She is the most human dog we have ever met, and makes us laugh all the time. We have loved taking her for walks ( and picking up her shhhh) and getting to know her. She loves licking people. I think i must have really tastey ankles.
The plan was to find work in Melbourne to fund the rest of our trip and to accomodate for the fact that Oz is more expensive than.... its proper expensive.
Unfortunately, our work offer had fallen through, leaving us skint and a bit worried- we were up Wolf Creek!
It is so weird in Oz, because unlike Asia, where there is strange smells, everyone looks different, people sound different, food is all different, and everyone is about 4 foot - in Oz, on first impressions, its just like the UK. At a glance all is ordinary. It is only when you really stop to observe, you realise that even though we look similar - the culture, the social make-up, the words and terminology used and the general intelligence is bizzare... It is like a paralell dimension, where things look sort of normal, but there are certain things that just dont add up....
They call flip flops, thongs. Idiots...
I managed to find work with Berwick Party Supplies, driving a white van and delivering party tables, cheers, balloons etc. It has been a great way of getting to know the area and the people.... the weird people.
We were also washing neighbours cars, doing their ironing, and pretty much anything else (within reason) to earn a few dollars.
Thats why we were both so grateful for the fact that we both landed our dream jobs finally - you guessed it - Pizza Makers....
We currently work for Crust Gormet Pizza (well, actually weve just done our final shift, but they dont know that yet) . The staff force is full of teenage stoners and a man called John.
Over the Christmas period, (happy bithday Jesus) we rented an awesome house in the city with friends from back home. It was a Croydon Christmas abroad. We had a brilliant time together, mainly getting drunk and eating. It was so nice to see each other after so long apart.
The Wog boys (me and the Italian) along with the rest of the guys, cooked up a proper smashing Crimbo dinner and we felt like a family. We even had crackers and paper hats.
Boxing day was spent at the MCG watching the Test Cricket, which is a big Ozzie cutom. We lasted about 2 hours before the girls started getting bored. Not even the nasty cider was helping. We left just in time to see Ricky Ponting get out, which made my Christmas.
New Years eve was spent with the Sheperds, chilling by the pool and counting down to midnight, knowing it was only midday back home.
New Years Day was spent in St.Kilda, on the beach with friends. it was 42c - which is marginally warmer than the average January day in the UK. Give or take...
So that has been the last month really.
Matt has recently played the role of Jimmie Savell (RIP) by making one of our dreams come true. He has given us a really generous gift which we will remeber for the rest of our lives. It will be the highlight of our Oz Adventure so far!
He has made it possible for us to head along the Great Ocean Road in a Campervan on a 5 day trip, which we are well excited about! The campervan looks awesome, its been something i had always wanted to do, but we were going to have to give it a miss until my brother stepped up.
It is at times like this that we miss home the most and when we realise how lucky we are to have such amazing families supporting us everywhere we go. Thank you Matt the Prat.
Once we return from our trip we are heading to Euchuca, about 4 hours in land from Melbourne. We are hoping to finalise work on a farm for 6 weeks, which should give us a chance to earn some serious dollar while shedding those extra Christmas pounds we have put on!
We shall write up a farm experience blog which will be the final blog until we move to Perth, where it is meant to be a cool 50c at the moment.
We know its been a while since we blogged last, we appreciate you all staying up to date, and we will make sure we find more time to write more blogs and find better suited sunglasses.
We love you all
Peace and thongs
Nic and Katie xxx