The W.A.-N.T. Tour has begun!
What, you may ask, is the W.A.-N.T. Tour?! Well, yes, I have been VERY remiss in updating this blog over the last few weeks/months – I’m sorry, and I apologize yet again for keeping everyone so in the dark. Luckily, over the next 15 days I will have 89 hours on trains, 3.5 hours on a plane, and all the lovely waiting time at stations and airports to bring you all up to date. But back to the W.A.-N.T. tour . .
Well, I did come to Australia because I thought it sounded like a good idea and it was an opportunity to work and earn some money and see a cool new place. All of the previous reasons have eventually proved themselves to be true, so now it’s time to get out there and see some of what I wanted to see all along: Western Australia and Northern Territory.
Maddies Cafe, my place of employ, closed today for a couple of weeks so the owners could go and see their family up in Darwin. I’ve known this for a couple of months, and so started planning my own Aussie Adventure. Somewhere I got the idea that a train would be a good way to see vast stretches of Australia that I will probably never get to in a car. Rail passes were available to foreigners, and so for the bargain price of $450, I now am the proud owner and bearer of a three-month unlimited train pass on 3 railway lines: The Indian Pacific, The Ghan and The Overlander. In the next two weeks I will travel half of the Indian Pacific (IP) and all of the Ghan, which apparently will showcase some of the best of Australia’s natural beauty.
Tonight I board the IP in Adelaide, and 41 hours later will arrive in Perth, W.A. After a few days there with family friends, I’ll fly to Darwin, N.T. for a few days of sun and suntanning in the tropical lovliness and hopefully chill out with some crocodiles. After that it’s back on the train for 25 hours to Alice Springs, where I’ll disembark and make my way through the Outback, sleeping under the stars, to Ayers Rock/Uluru for a sunset and a sunrise, before heading back to Alice to get back on the train for another 23 hours to bring me back to Adelaide. I’m not completely alone on this trip – George is coming with me! George is a Coopers Stout merchandising monkey that I batted my eyelashes for at a bar a few weeks ago. He will be my companion on this trip (think travelling garden gnome) and expect to see quite a few pictures of our adventures. Once back in Adelaide, I’ll meet up with Henry for the weekend before we go back to Naracoorte.
Whew, if it sounds like a lot of travelling, it is. Probably covering more kilometres than I have in quite some time. A few people think I’m crazy for wanting to spend so much time in a day/nighter seat looking out the window at the Nullaboor Plain and the Outback, but I love trains. They are a fantastic way to travel, are far roomier than planes, and you actually get to see what you’re travelling through; as opposed to just flying high above it all. Strangely enough, on of the last trains I was on landed me on this crazy continent all together . . . maybe someone on this next one will present another opportunity to a different part of the world . . . keep reading!