Did you know that they call bell peppers “capsicum” in Australia? They also say aluminium instead of aluminum. Like, AL-U-MINIUM foil. My new friends at the “sharehouse” that I stayed at in Cairns (pronounced “Cans”) were quick to remind me that the United States doesn’t like to do what other countries do. Feet, miles, ounces – you know what I’m talking about. Anyway, I always lost those arguments and ended them with “Oh yeah? Well, I speak clearer English than you.”
Remember in my last post I mentioned that I had too much alone time in the Gold Coast? Well, I broke out of that funk by living with people from ALL OVER the world for the last week in Cairns. I met people from Holland, Scotland, Switzerland, Italy, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, Czech Republic, England, Australia and more! They were all living in one place. Most people were in their 20’s and were living in Cairns doing various forms of work or internships for a few months. During my last day there the guy from Italy said that he didn’t sleep well because he was too excited about the new job he got as a chef in a celebrity’s house in the South of France. What?! I have only met a handful of Americans during my more than two months of travel around Australia. We are missing out! But, on the other hand, I am reminded everyday how great the United States is, we really have an unbelievable quality of life, great people and endless opportunity. Back to the initial hand, more of us should sell our TV(s), grab some of those great American people friends and travel the world.
The owners of the house were some of the nicest people I have ever met. A retired couple, Rex and Leeanne own a few sharehouses around Cairnes and they treated everyone that stayed there like their family. (By the way – a sharehouse is a large house where everyone has individual rooms but share the bathrooms and kitchens). Rex was the stereotypical Crocodile Dundee type of Australian and Leeanne was the boss/mom. Hahaha, both of those descriptions are compliments. They came by the house everyday always cleaning, getting to know people and making sure everyone was taken care of. They also picked me up and dropped me off at the airport! I had so much fun hanging out with everyone, sharing food, having beers with Rex and Leeanne and just asking everyone questions about their homelands. I didn’t know that the Swiss-German language is way different from German-German. Or that ‘Holland’ is often used to indicate the Netherlands. I was so confused. It’s not a small world after all. There are more than seven billion people in the world, crazy. But, then I figured that I couldn’t be as confused as the Swiss girl that was in school learning English trying to communicate with someone that was VERY Scottish and a New Zealander that was always VERY drunk. Below are some pics of us playing around the house:
All that AND I saw the Great Barrier Reef! Did you know that the reef is larger than the Great Wall of China and is the only living thing on earth visible from space? It is also 1,800 miles long, has more than 400 different kinds of coral, over 1,500 species of tropical fish, more than 200 types of birds (yuck, that’s disgusting, I hate birds), around 20 types of reptiles including sea turtles (I swam with a turtle!) and giant clams over 120 years old! I took a tour that lasted the entire day and it was amazing! The pictures may not be mind blowing but when you see a part of it in person and think of it as a massive system of living organisms, the Great Barrier Reef is very amazing.
My other days were spent lounging at the Cairns Lagoon and BBQing with fellow Texan, Taylor (thesecretdestinations.com). I jokingly labeled the Lagoon as the “Milk Bath” which was a joke that was understood as hilarious by people from over ten countries around the world. That comedic routine was tested and proven by the occupants of the sharehouse.
Isn’t it funny that I went to see one of the seven wonders of the natural world and I am more excited to reminisce about sitting in the garden of a sharehouse talking with people? There are seven natural wonders that we might all want to see but there are more than seven billion reasons to travel the world. Sell your TV and go on a worldwide adventure to meet all of these interesting people! Go ahead, leave the day after tomorrow.
You can check out all of the pictures HERE.