We left for the airport early. Claimed our tax-deductible items dosed up on meds so we could get on the plane without infecting everyone at Heathrow. Flew out in the morning. The flight back was a non-event. Still too sick to function really. No conversation was had as it sent us in to fits. I cannot vouch for Shrimp but I was too sick to really sleep.
It was good to be home. It was so exciting to unpack. If you have not traveled like we did, then you will not understand the feeling of relief that comes over you when you know that you can do your washing whenever you want, wear whatever you want, wash and dress at your home and use your own toilet.
The doctor the next day told me I had Bronchitis but I had to have some tests run. The next week he said it was A-Typical Pneumonia. I suppose all things considering I was lucky I made it back to Australia, although a smarter person probably would have gone to the doctor sooner.
I have not talked to Shrimp since so I cannot speak to much about how he has fared. We should probably have a debrief but we will see with time.
A lot changed at home while I was away, with work, family and some of my friends. All the changes were good though.
The predictions people made about the trip and their outcome:
I would love the Glokenspeil (no) London (no) Paris (yes) Italian pasta (yes) Antonio Gaudi’s works (of course)
The trip would pass so fast and I would wish it went for longer (no, but maybe as I was sick and not getting on so well with Shrimp at all times)
I had to try everything possible as I would not know the next time I would get to go back (I tried everything possible, and I do not regret a thing, now I even like seafood, frogs legs, snails and mushrooms)
I would enjoy learning new languages (yes and now I do not know which one I want to learn first)
I would gain so much weight (I gained 3 kilos so yes)
I would fall in love with Shrimp/some European guy/One of the guys on the Contiki (absolutely obviously not/ and I was not looking for love or a fling I was looking for a fun time drinking in Europe and making some new friends and I did)
Things I have learned, or that have changed me:
We are lucky to be in Australia. Our cities are spread out nicely and not hugely populated in small spaces. Drivers here aren’t wonderful, but they aren’t the worst. We have some really good laws about public areas and we have a great crime rate in Perth at the least. Australia is quite a clean place and we are fortunate enough to have the space on the sidewalk to have bins for garbage collections.
Australia could however learn a thing or two about the way it relates to the environment. We aren’t overly “eco-friendly”. The cost of most things is relatively higher than over there, but that is most likely due to the cost of living so far away from other countries.
Having the space and facilities we have, we do not fully utilize them in the most effective way. If more people rode bikes, there would be more cycleways. The cities of our country are relatively flat and so cycling isn’t be difficult. All of our capital cities are built on the coast, so we have the luxury of swimming opportunities aplenty, with especially pretty beaches. There are parks located at such regular intervals that being able to sit under a tree on the grass anywhere isn’t hard.
Eating well isn’t really done here. Cooking is very good here and we have great red meat, but the range and serving method isn’t the most fantastic in the world. There are great fruit and vegetables grown here.
Lastly, there is most likely a scenic and wonderful body of water in every country in the world that I could visit with Wardog. Imagine paddleboarding the world! That’s what I think of as I’m going to sleep each nigh now.