So after leaving Melbourne and the shepherd family behind, we headed in land on a 4 hour train journey and arrived in proper bush land red dusted Echuca.
The destination was Echuca Backpackers working Hostel, which was meant to provide work for all rent paying guests.
Unfortunately for us, the mixture of the Harvest being late and thus being no fruit to pick, and the landlord being a total first class p****meant that the "working" Hostel quickly turned into a "dirty and overpriced" Hostel.
"Come to Echuca backpackers, I charge you s*** loads of money to live in horrifically dirty and dangerous conditions. And the best thing is - I'm not going to help get you any work. You stupid pommey c**ts"
Another positive about the landlord was his organisational skills.
We spent the first week in separate dorms, Katie being in the beautiful ensuite ladies 6 bed dorm, and me being in the 12 bed working mans dorm, sleeping next to the Hostels angriest and smelliest man.
Sonny was 16stone, ginger, Irish, and once smashed up the TV room because he lost a game of FIFA against another lad on the playstation.
He went to work every day on a piggery, came home in the evenings, drank till he passed out/shat himself and then fell asleep on his bunk, in his work clothes.
I could taste his smell as I slept.
I woke up feeling like he had been inside of me...... I decided to sleep with a weapon.
So Echuca didn't start great, but we both got on our bikes, printed out CVs and headed onto the high street with a mission to stay positive and find employment. Simon the landlord clearly wasn't going to find us any!
We knew that without work, we would be returning back to the UK much sooner then expected, and that wasn't an option.
Others stuggled, but we were really proactive and within a few days the work started trickling in.
We found work picking the smallest apples in the world in 35c heat. You got paid per bin you filled.
When I say bin, I mean tanks.
Tank so big you needed a tractor to pull them.
We drove tractors. And quit after 2 days.
After making 35 dollars each.
I found work behind the bar in an Italian restaurant and Katie was searching still when suddenly, our dreams were answered!!!!!!
7-5 on a piggery!!!!!! The very same piggery that smelly sonny worked on... Before he got fired.
So I stepped up and into sonnys (very smelly) shoes and went to work, labouring out on the farm in yarawalla!
That is a real place.
As is wogawoga. And titybong.
Katie found work in a "up their own arse" type of bar which she soon packed in with the potential of full time work else where.
She went to the fruit packing shed with the rest of the girls from the hostel, and we both finally had found full time work!
The next few weeks went quite quickly, working throughout the week, drinking with friends on the weekends and listening to shockingly bad Ozzie radio throughout.
We started to feel almost part of real Australian community life.... That was the worst bit.
We then moved out of the hostel and found a little flat to live in with our mate and fellow wog boy, Dom.
It was so nice to be out the hostel.
To have a shower and not feel like you are dirtier than you started.
To buy food and it not be stollen.
To not have to wait while 95 people used 1 kitchen stove.
To sleep in the knowledge that no mental naked Germans would run into your bedroom flapping about yaah.
To know that you don't have to worry about being killed by White tail and red back spiders because the d*** head landlord hadn't bothered fumigating the hostel this year.
We had escaped and soon we would be leaving Echuca to head to Perth, Western Australia.
The experience of working in the bush was awesome, seeing kangaroos, red back spiders, killer brown snakes longer than I am tall and all in surroundings which looked to me, like the real Australia I had always imagined.
With the money we have saved we hope to be able to reach Perth and have a break from work.
We worked our socks off to get out here and the "holiday/working visa" had definitely become more about working than holiday. We hadn't seen each other for a long time properly and wanted to start to enjoy our trip again.
We had met loads of really cool people but were ready to make like a tree and leaf. Make like a rock and roll. Make like a banana and split.
Make like an Ozzie and.... Have zero banter skills, a lack of any real imagination or personality, say things in a weird voice and eat egg on everything...
Getting to Perth meant Future Music Festival, which we had booked with mates a long while back!
We had been looking forward to that date for a looooong time.
There was a HUGE line up, the weather was going to be 35c, our friends will all be there - only problem was -
All the Ozzies.
So bye bye Victoria, bye bye New South Wales. Hello WA, welcome to Perth.
Bring on Future Music!!!
Peace and Big Beats
Nic and Katie xx