I’m having a pretty sweet Friday. First of all, it’s Friday – HELLO WEEKEND, I’ve given myself a big pat on the back for getting up at 5am every morning this week to exercise (well done Moses) and to top it off, I’ve just had (another) total moment and it inspired me to write a quick post on Darwin and how much I actually love it! I’ve just been sitting on my lunch break from work down on The Esplanade, sitting under a tree in the shade whilst looking out over the ocean. I didn’t have anything to read, I wasn’t listening to music, I just sat there eating my salad and thinking “Eeee I live here!” I cannot believe it but I’ve lived in D Town now for 14 months!! FOURTEEN MONTHS!?!?! Eh!? How?! I never ever thought that I would settle somewhere when I first came to Australia…22 months ago!!! Everything I’ve done in other places seems like ages ago – working in a club with aaaawful music on the Gold Coast, an overrated New Year in Sydney and walking clean into a parking meter (lol), our trip in a bucket of rust campervan for absolute miles down to Melbourne, cycling 3 miles to work every day in Brisbane, living in Perth and freezing my tits off once ‘Autumn’ came and it didn’t really get lower than 18 degrees…It’s funny how all the things I didn’t like at the time, I just look back and laugh at now. All amazing memories and experiences with so many different people which have lead up to where I am now.
However, everything I’ve done since coming to Darwin last year feels like it all happened just yesterday! Yes, ALL of it happened yesterday. In one day, I swear! It was a whole year ago since I was on the farm. A WHOLE YEAR!!! And I’ve been with Little Chrissy that full time too – although I feel like I’ve known him forever now. A lot has happened and time has absolutely flown but thats probably down to the fact that its been the best year ever!! Meeting Little Chrissy, living in a hostel for the first time (and the last), being a fridge packing farmer, moving in with Chris like a grownup, my trip to Bali and the East Coast with Swenton, my trip home (and London), many many camping excursions with Chris and I’ve survived a (s)wet season and now I’m into my second dry.
The reason I mainly want to write this post is to get everyone I know to COME AND VISIT ME!! Now I know we are staying here for at least another couple of years, I think its time people got their arses over here. See for yourself why I love it so much! I’m not just talking about Darwin either, there are soooo many amazing places to go in this country! When I went home, one of my friends said to me “I’ve never really fancied Australia” and that line actually blew me away. I know everyone is different, each to their own and all that but seriously, this place is fucking HUGE!!! I’m not talking a drive from Newcastle to London. I’m talking a 5 hour FLIGHT from one side of the country to the other! If you can’t find anything you “fancy” here then I don’t know where you will find it? The fact they’d said it after being blasted in the chops with my never ending photo uploads for a year and a half made my jaw drop even more…let’s be honest, I have been to some mint places and I have some absolutely wicked pics – how on earth can’t you fancy that?! Amazing white sandy beaches, tropical rainforests, desert, big vibrant cities, natural beauty, crazy nothingness, the Great Barrier Reef, red dirt, opportunity, lush weather, mint animals, friendly people, plenty of BEER…! I hate beer but I bet I got a lot of people’s attention with that last point. Plenty of wine too (in my experience).
So, here I am in my second dry season – which is when I would recommend anyone to come to Darwin (and see me)… It runs from around May to the back end of September. Just like the British summer? No don’t be silly, we don’t just get a week of nice weather here. It’s consistent during the dry. You know you’re in for a pleasant day every day! It’s the time when the markets open, the festivals start, the crowds gather on the beaches to watch the sunset…the feel of the place is like no other! It is however, the time of year that Darwin turns into a total sausage fest too (for all my single girl friends). Basically the weather in the rest of Australia turns cold (still not as cold as England but hey you definitely feel it once you’ve acclimatised), so every backpacker and his dog come here chasing the sun and looking for work – because we come from cold countries, so why would we want to travel so far to still be cold? Well this is it! Not all sausage obviously, there are girls too. Outnumbered.
Mitchell Street becomes a haven for travellers of all shapes and sizes – the kind that swan around barefoot, wearing hippie pants chucking them fire things about in public like nowts a bother, the ones that come all the way here to do what they do at home…drink, the workers – who come here and work flat out to save for their next trip without experiencing anything of Darwin other than Mitchell Street (and annoyingly whinge about how shit Darwin is – it’s YOUR fault mate!), the proper travellers – they live in a jam packed car or camper and open all doors when ever possible to air out the foisty smell of sweaty humans (I know this feeling)…basically the place is BUZZING and everyone is here to have a good time! I’ve met people from all over the world here and loved every minute of it! It’s not just full of backpackers though, there are other tourists here too…including nanas and granddads wearing socks and sandals. It’s for everyone! Maybe not Mitchell Street…I’d hate to take my nana there after 9pm. LAIRY! Don’t worry, there are so many nice places that you can take your nana for a glass of wine. (Why am I talking about nana’s all of a sudden)??
There are loads of lush spots to visit just outside Darwin too. Anybody who is following me on Instagram will know I have a slight obsession with all things nature and especially waterfalls! Only an hour away is Litchfield National Park – loads of lush waterfalls, 4wd tracks through river crossings, parts of nothing for as far as the eye can see but crazy looking termite mounds and buffalos that sound like scary dinosaurs during the night when you’re camping, pretty little picnic and barbecue spots, trails and bush walks…the whack!! Right on our bloody doorstep. Including mosquitoes unfortunately. Those bastard mozzies that survived the ice age! I hate them! We’ve been to Kakadu too (kaaaa kaaaa du du du push pineapple shake a tree), which has all the same on offer but so much bigger (the largest national park in Australia FYI) and a 3 hour drive away (which turns out to be nowt when you live in Australia). Like I said a 5 hour flight from one end to the other! Still blows my mind! Anyway, there’s loads of other spots and they’re all lush so just come over? Aye? Ok, sweet. And did you know about the crocodiles? This is the croc capital after all…
Alternatively, you could come and visit me in the wet season because in all honesty, it really really isn’t that bad! I remember dreading coming back to Darwin at the end of my East Coast trip after Christmas last year. I thought it would be pissing down all the time. I’m not going to lie, I think for the first week in January it rained quite consistently but that’s all I can remember of it being really bad. It would be a lush day then all of a sudden it wouldn’t just rain, it would pour! The exciting kind (for an English person). None of that shit “wet” rain you get in England (when it’s barely a shower but you get stupidly inexplicibaly wet); the rain here just stotts down from the sky like it’s got beef with the ground and straight up soaks you. No messing about! Half an hour after though, you’d never even know it had been raining because it’s so hot that it dries in minutes (wow, what a revelation Laurie)! You might not think coming here during storm season is a good idea but I bet you’ll see one of the best storms you will ever see. Me and Chris visited the beach most nights during the wet for sunset – the sky would look mad with the storms. And the colours!? MY GOD! Dreamy! Apparently, the locals tell me it was a ‘dry’ wet season (sounds weird) and what we got was nothing compared to previous years. Well if the storms weren’t as good as usual then I can’t imagine how mint they must be at their best. Some were so loud they made me shit myself (not literally – you know what I mean) and the lightening was so bright that sometimes it would wake me up! We were even that daft pommie couple who went camping during the wet (locals wouldn’t hear of it). Yes we were sweating our tits off but nothing a canny little camping fan didn’t help, and there’s nothing like being in a tent when a crazy storm is going on. I’d like to thank our trusted little roof tent for keeping us dry. It’s also great to see the Territory when it is lush green and the waterfalls are really going for it! It’s mad how different they are in the dry season. Some even totally dry up! Plus when we went camping, we had most of the waterfalls and stuff to ourselves! Who wouldn’t want that? However, I have learned a valuable lesson from having places to ourselves…don’t think you’re funny and get your bum out when you assume you’re alone at a waterfall because there is a chance a father and his young daughter will stumble across you and your naked white bum. Poor things.
I need to stop typing now. This was meant to be a quick post I thought of while I was sitting having my lunch but as usual I can talk and talk… Darwin is so different to other places in Australia and I definitely get the feeling of freedom here (and still feel like I’m on holiday). Soooo basically, yeah, come and visit me! 😀
I want you to feel how I feel! xxx