for such a long period without e-mail or blog updates. I
don't feel all that talkative lately anyway, as this middle
section of the adventure has been emotionally challenging,
tiring and the effects of being "in transit" for
so long are starting to wear me down.
Anyway, let me sum up August. I realized soon after making
landfall in Cairns (Queensland, Australia) that I hadn't
slept on land for 5 months, and that I rarely get to hang
out with my cousin Liz, so I flew down to Sydney to visit
her and her husband Jim for a week. What a fantastic time
in such great company - it made me realize something which
I'll touch on later when I talk about human interactions
flying back to Cairns, I laid in bed on a random boat for
a few days, delerious from some sort of Australian flu.
Then hopped on a 48 foot Beneteau and headed north, double-handing
through the Great Barrier Reef and notorious Torres Strait,
the bottleneck which divides the Pacific and Indian Oceans.
Once safely on the other side, we headed downwind through
the Arafura Sea to crocodile-infested Darwin, gateway to
the Indian Ocean.
In this very short time, I was able to make a thorough
evaluation of Australian culture but after a few Victoria
Bitters, things got hazy and I lost the beer coaster I had
written it all down on.
of all those wonderful things that make Australia just a
little different from the rest of us, one thing I would
like to bring home is the concept of giving everyone a "Fair
Go", which I interpret as giving everyone an equal
chance to do things their own way - and perhaps the opportunity
Anyhow, that's Australia in a nutshell. I didn't see enough,
so one day I will return to the Land Down Under, certainly
armed with some sort of van bristling with surfboards.
it was time to leave Oz. My good friends Zach and Cody joined
the boat in Darwin, and on the eve of Labour Day weekend,
we set sail west once again, this time into a new ocean,
the Indian, heading towards Indonesia.
Over the past few months, I have learnt that the course
of your life can change in the blink of an eye - it could
be a random wave or shift in the winds, and it can leave
you gasping for air. What happened next was one of those
moments. A few days into the Indian Ocean, with civilization
about a week away, I received news that my father had passed
had a lot of time to think things through. This is hardly
the kind of place to really share deep-down feelings, so
I'll keep this blog relevant to my travel experience.
The very nature of this adventure is rapidly changing.
What began as a "search for pleasure" has become
a pursuit of life.
It is the opportunity to learn from both the places you
visit, and from the people you meet along the way - before
the places vanish, and the people are taken from you forever.
Traveling is a nomadic lifestyle, and therefore is an opportunity
to surround yourself with the company of people - like my
cousin for example - who make you want to become a better
person for the simple sake that they inspire you.
Those people that inspire you to listen rather than talk.
They ask questions back. And when you talk to them, you
know they aren't busy wondering how to change the subject
back to themselves. These are the people who make you a
also gives you perspective. Take advantage of that. Visit
the places that make you ask questions and accept other
ways of life, places that make you at least a little skeptical
of your own culture and way of life - and appreciative of
the parts you take for granted.
The Indian Ocean - or as I call it, the Indico Project
- lies ahead. Stay tuned and thanks for staying with the