Saturday, August 23, 2014

Whitehaven Beach

Australian beaches are kind of awesome. I mean, it IS Australia after all.

Whitehaven Beach was no exception. 

The sand was out of this word. Not only was it pristinely white, it was also very soft and squeaky! The silica content makes it this way, and I had never encountered anything like it.

Located on Whitsunday Island, the beach was about a 45 minute boat ride away from Hamilton Island. Best part of the boat ride: seeing Humpback Whales!

Once there, we had time to lay out, take naps, and perfect jumping pictures.

This is definitely a place I need to come back to.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A respite from winter's cold

Let me just say it. 

Not having summer for a year really blows. My timing with this move was impeccable! 

Therefore, it was high time for a quick holiday to a warm destination.

Enter: Hamilton Island, located in Queensland in what is called the Whitsunday Islands.

I'd been wanting to go there since Will started teasing me with pictures of it two years ago. To me, it looked like absolute paradise. 

I wanted to cry with happiness when we got off the plane and stepped into WARMTH and HUMIDITY. My god, I never thought I'd be so happy to encounter humidity again!

Ok, so, picture the mountain resort from Dirty Dancing. Now transplant it to an island instead. That's pretty much the best way I can describe Hamilton Island. It's a resort island with one main street where the shops and eateries are, and the rest is accommodation. Fun fact: Julia Roberts has a house there! And Pit Bull. Random.

There are also no cars, aside from service and official island vehicles. Everyone gets around by foot or by golf cart. Bonus: the golf carts had the steering wheel on the left side! 

Except for a couple super swanky, exclusive places, everyone on the island has access to all the hotels and their pools and restaurants. So basically it's a relaxing [not so] free for all. We stayed in very nice-sized apartment right across from the beach, which was my main objective in seeking a place to stay.

It was such a magical, relaxing weekend, and we did quite a few fun things. More posts to come!

Monday, August 18, 2014

In my new life, I go to things like the Sheep and Wool Show

Sheep are big business in Australia. 

They're cute, they bah, and they're yummy. 

They're such big business, in fact, that there are whole shows dedicated to them! Imagine a rodeo, minus the actual rodeo part. But there is indeed a shearing competition!

My favorite part was the huge building filled with row after row of show sheep. Not dirty, out in the paddock sheep. Show sheep. Perfectly coiffed, regal, GIANT. And all available for patting! 

Baah ram ewe.

Friday, August 15, 2014

4th of July in another country

Living in another country can suddenly turn the most averagely patriotic person into a full God-bless-America-let's eat ribs-and-wave-a-flag patriot. 

Let it be known: I don't own US flag shorts. I love the USA, but I also think there are a lot of other great countries out there. 

However, spending 4th of July in Australia had me wishing I owned a ballgown made out of the US flag. 
Or at least some novelty shorts.

So what was there to do, other than throw an epic 4th of July party?

Always one to welcome other cultures, it became an Aussie-style USA party. It was held on a cold winter's night out at the drinking hut on the farm. And let me just say, some of these Aussies were way more prepared for an American party than I was. 

There were giant "AMERICAN STYLE" hot dogs with Heinz ketchup and French's mustard (thanks, Costco!) , a cake with a flag on it (you're welcome), and even some buffalo wings with FRANK'S HOT SAUCE (thank you, friends who regularly go to the US and love Frank's hot sauce as much as I do. Beer pong and flip cup were played, though I was told I took it way too seriously. To this I say, how can you not?! "Party in the USA" and other American themed songs were sung loudly and badly. There were "American costumes" worn.

All in all, an excellent night. America was celebrated well, and I think we did her proud.


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