22nd September, 2013
Tell everyone in one post what has happened in the past year. It’s a bit like “Mission Impossible”, but I’ll try to do it.
11 am, I’m having my first beer, cooking my German grandmother’s special potato recipe that’s well appreciated over here.
“Here” is where I found myself just by accident, while I was looking for a job in a farm in Queensland, but let’s start from the beginning.
11 months ago I said goodbye to everyone and I left to Sydney, Australia, with my luggage and a thousand dollars in my pocket.
For those who didn’t know, in 2013 Sydney was classified third place among the most expensive cities in the world. I still remember my surprise when I arrived at the airport and bought a 330ml bottle of water for $4, and that was just the beginning…
In the first three months I had such a hard time, made many sacrifices, whole days spent looking for a job and sleepless night in overcrowded hostels.
I was hating Sydney for its cold (yes, in Australia it can be cold), its wind, its misbehaving Asian citizens and its $5 cappuccinos.
Luckily I found a job immediately, just after two weeks and that helped to grow my bad attitude, due to the amount of double shifts I had.
But things started to change when a friend of mine brought me on a car ride through the city, so I finally discovered the beautiful world that was surrounding me.
Once that happened, I started to go out during my days off, instead of spending the day at home, sleeping and exhausted.
And then… it was love.
Sydney became my city. For people like me, those who come from the countryside, living in a big city is not that easy, but Sydney cannot be considered a metropolis. Nothing compared to the hustle and bustle of other cities where I’ve lived, like L.A. or Milan. I would say it’s is perfectly people-oriented.
Another four months passed quickly and I discovered stunning hidden corners of this marvellous city, filled with modernity and beauty.
My second beer…
As I told you, months passed, winter was knocking at the door, and the time to leave to work on a farm had arrived. That’s because I needed to complete 88 days in a farming job in order to get my second year visa. I’m not gonna annoy you with bureaucratic details; if you’re curios just take a look at the government site.
I unwillingly left my beloved Sydney for the warm temperatures in Queensland.
I went to Cairns, considered a city, though the concept of “city” is far more different for European people. I would say it’s just a small town.
But with its tropical weather, that means winter with an average of 25℃, its stunning forests and its Great Barrier Reef, it’s more like a paradise.
From there begun my real Aussie adventure made with fantastic experiences, people who taught me a lot, things that I had never ever thought to do in my life.
Time flew in a twinkling between bushwalking, sunbathing on wild beaches, visits to deserted coastlines, banana fields, and dives into hidden water-holes.
I spent my first months near Cairns, in the middle of nowhere, in a wood house built by a farmer, completely self-sufficient, whose source of energy were solar panels on the rooftop and a generator activated by the nearby creek. No network coverage, no phone, no internet, no television. The entire property was 38 acres of tropical forest. Pure nature, so you shouldn’t be surprised when I tell you that in the early morning my guest was a kangaroo, wandering around the garden looking for food.
And then, from the middle of nowhere I found myself here, few Kms from Cairns.
“Here”, as I told you before, is a magic place where I happened to be, just by chance.
That’s the backyard of a Queenslander, a typical style of Queensland house.
People come and go, and from the 13 guys that we here in the beginning, there’s just 3 left.
During the highest population, every corner of this place became a bedroom. You could find people sleeping in tents, vans, on the tree house, even in the chicken coop! The kitchen and shower are open-air, vary old style, and when we get bored of work we would go for a walk at the botanical garden next door, we would paint or we’d go play beach volley near the lagoon.
Four months in this paradise pepped me up, filling my heart with love for this wild land.
I’ve got only few days left before I’ll leave. It’s gonna be a long travel, a whole month all by myself, my car and my camera, along the east coast, 3.000 km to get back to Sydney.
I know I’ll cry and my heart will break, but it’s time for me to move on.
And this is just the beginning…