Archive for July 10th, 2008

Catsnstuff Down Under – 4.3: Alice Springs to Adelaide. Really!

July 10, 2008

When I flew from Perth to Alice Springs, I was really excited, because you fly over Uluru (Ayers Rock). Of course, I was having a conversation with the guy next to me and managed to miss the announcement of the pilot and the fact that half the plane had run over to the side where you could see the rock. Also, I was sitting next to the engine of the plane, which blocked the window (I had no vision whatsoever) and made a shitload of noise, so there went the possibility to see what I think is biggest monolith on earth from the sky. Hey, that can happen you know!

When I arrived in Alice Springs, I stayed in a lovely hostel. The guy that picked me up, Rex, mentioned that he had a friend in Amsterdam. When I asked him what her name was he said ‘Bregtje’. She just happens to be one of my best friends, so that was a nice coincidence in the middle of the desert of Australia! I was to be picked up early in the morning by the tour company, so I made it an early night. I was kind of dreading it, because I heard from two different people that the company had one terrible tour guide who could only swear a lot and get drunk and who was really rude. His name is Nathan, they told me, so if you get him, you’re screwed.

So there I was, waiting for the tour bus. When it arrived, an unshaven guy staggered over to me and announced in a voice that indicated years of dedicated smoking that his name was Nathan. Wow. In the bus he yelled to the group that there would be loads of drinking the coming week, and my heart sank. I don’t drink, and being around drunk people is no fun for me. But BOY was I proven wrong. In the week that followed I had so much fun and I loved everyone on the bus (yes, Nathan too), made great friends and I can’t remember laughing that much ever. Just a reminder to myself that everybody experiences things different and that not everything is always as it seems. Ok, enough reflection, time for the rest of the story!

The first day of the tour, we didn’t do much, just a lot of driving (which I did a lot of in Australia, on this tour about 3000 kilometers). We slept by the campfire in swags. For those of you who don’t know, swags are basically matresses with a canvas exterior where you crawl in to with your sleeping bag. Also, you have to stuff the swag with all the clothes and other warm stuff you have, because when you sleep in the desert it can become very cold at night. When we were there is was around two to ten degrees Celcius a.k.a. freezing your t*ts of as Nathan so eloquently pointed out. It looks a little something like this: