We just wanted to say a big thank you to all the people in Australia who opened their homes (and fridges!) to us during our time there and made us feel so welcome…
Denis & Margaret who met us with their grandchildren, in a park near Nowra as we were looking for a place to camp, and took us in. Treating us to a day on the river with the kayaks, a guided tour of the area and a bbq supper, not to mention the performance by the children in their show! We loved meeting this great family and had a good time messing about with Heidi, Jasmine, Jared, Laura, Patrick and little Grace!
Dave & Claire – Dave and I used to work together so it was great to catch up and very kind of him and Claire to let us stay for almost two weeks! We had a wonderful time in Sydney, staying with them in their splendid home, eating lots of lovely food and enjoying the Sydney festival. Thanks for the DVD hire guys, As it is in Heaven is such a good film and Up was great too. You totally spoilt us and we really enjoyed spending time with you, so thanks for everything!
Chris & Nicole met us in Mallacoota and very thoughtfully emailed us to invite us to stay with them in Glenbrook, whilst we visited the Blue Mountains. We had fun sleeping in the cubby, watching Avatar in 3D, having some meaningful conversations and meeting Brae and Bronte – thanks for the lovely paper aeroplanes you made us – shame we didn’t get to spend more time with you! Thanks again for thinking of us and sharing your home.
Ian & Heidi, warmshowers hosts in Newcastle – fellow cycle tourers who took us in at short notice having been bombarded with cycle tourers dropping in on them (including Margo and Ben who are cycling back to Scotland – see their site). A shower was very welcome after a very hot day of cycling in hairdryer wind to Newcastle and we were very pleased to meet Ian, Heidi and their son Ollie. Thanks for the trip to the beach, wonderful risotto and rose wine, and comparing notes on New Zealand, especially finding out that you guys camped in the same little spot as us after coming down the Lindis Pass!
Louise & George in Nowendoc gave us a taste of country life in Australia and really showed us the scale of land out there! We had a great time with them and Dutch backpackers Iggy and Su, as well as getting to know all of the animals. During our time we developed a strange obsession with sticks and we are only just managing to resist the urge to pick up sticks whenever we see them by the roadside! All joking aside, it was great to see Louise enjoying her new life much, she is an inspiration and shows just how versatile a girl can be. George made us very welcome and helped us out enormously by contacting people ahead of us, contacting the Walcha News and showing us Port Macquarie.
Bernardo, good friend of Georges, caught up with us in the chippy where he told us he had cooked dinner for us and to come over as soon as we were ready. Having made it to Walcha over the hills form Nowendoc, it was so nice to have a place to stay and a friendly face at the end of the day. We felt right at home and managed to get an hour with Bernardo before bed to hear his travel stories and see some photos. Lovely guy, thanks mate!
Tony & Liz let us stay with them in Armidale and made us feel so welcome, like long lost family! Thank you for the tour of Armidale, which we would never have seen otherwise and for taking us for tea at the art gallery, as well as a wonderful thai meal that evening – talk about being spoilt. We had a great time and really enjoyed spending time with Liz and Tony, we do hope they will come and visit us in the UK!
Phil & Amanda Jones who let us stay with them in Tenterfield, made us very welcome with wonderful food, lovely company and charming children, not to mention a great house! We arrived exhausted after a long 85km day with lots of hills, so the Jones family were a very welcome sight. Thanks so much for your generosity and a big hello to George, Abby and Isaac!
Keith & Vanessa Pallant offered us a place to stay in Brisbane, which was a great help for us, giving us a base to sort out the bikes and pack up before flying to Indonesia. They also spoilt us rotten, feeding us wonderful food – a roast dinner!! and gave us a tour of Brisbane. It was a great way to end our Australia leg. Thanks also to Talia for sharing her music with us, you have a great voice and we wish you every success!
So I’m sure our mum’s will be delighted to know that we are being looked after so well, but it means a lot to us too. There’s nothing like days of sleeping in a tent, boiling water on a stove, being bitten by midges, peeing in the bushes, not having a shower and cycling in the heat to make you appreciate the great indoors, with its kettles, electricity, beds and showers. Not only that but having a friendly face welcome you, people who have never met you before offering you the kindness and generosity of family is amazing and totally renews my faith in humanity. So thank you!