I am thrilled to note that during the course of my four and a half month trip around the world, I did not have to start a cycle of prednisone. I did become a bit more symptomatic at certain points throughout the journey, and I almost brought myself to call my GI and get his approval to start on prednisone. Thankfully, these mini-flares (possibly due to my stomach adjusting to new foods, etc) went away just in the knick of time. I certainly did not want the powerful mood-affecting steroid to impact my experience. Continue reading
I waited until I got to Australia to schedule my return flight to the States. I just wasn’t sure how I was going to finish my trip. It was important to me that I left satisfied with my Aussie-NZ experience, even though I didn’t have the months of time necessary to comprehensively see these two countries. It quickly became clear from talking to other travelers that my final stop in New Zealand would be my favorite stop.
With beaches on my right and snow capped mountains to my left, my bus trekked down the coast. The island is covered with mirror lakes surrounded by picturesque mountains. The lone highway road runs alongside a multitude of waterfalls that actively cut through the mountains. Our bus squeezes onto one lane bridges passing over massive gorges. It sounds like I’m describing a fictional trek through Eden, but no. This is just a bus ride down the coast of the south island of New Zealand.
I thought Australia was far away. But then I flew three hours south east to New Zealand. I had an opportunity to check out a globe the other day, and my proximity to any mainland besides Australia was shocking. I’m so far away in a land that is quickly exceeding my expectations, which were already very high. Continue reading
Over the past three months, I’ve slept in many different beds in all sorts of hostels. Hostels are the backbone of the international backpacker culture. We eat, drink, sleep, and meet most of our new friends in these cheap accommodations. Some are party hostels, where you can either join the communal craziness or lay awake in bed trying to ignore the ruckess. Others are non-social hostels that simply provide a bed to sleep in while you spend most of your time in the city. Then there’s the Arts Factory in Byron Bay. I’ve never experienced a vibe like this at any hostel. It’s going to be very difficult to put into words. Continue reading
For every sport, there is a spot in the world that is the best place in the world for that activity. I’ve quickly realized that Australia is home to a number of these places. What’s the best place in the world to snorkel? I doubt many people would argue for any other location besides the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
My first 24 hours in Australia have made me realize how drastic the differences are between the western world and Asia. Here are my first impressions of Melbourne, Australia: Continue reading