I came from a very long way away; I had other options, originally I was going to South Africa, I even got a job offer in Vienna, but German is not my favourite language;

I chose Australia, where I knew one person (sort of), the sister of a friend I had shared a flat with for a while in London;

I was twenty-two when I left England on a cold, sleety January morning and flew to Singapore, by ship/jet, the cheapest method available;

I spent three days crying on and off in hot steamy Singapore (where my parents were actually married when it was a British colony);

Then I boarded a boat for the final leg of the journey across the Indian Ocean to Fremantle in Western Australia;

Our dormitory was below the water line in the bowels of the ship, several were seasick, but once I got used to the odd motion of the waves, I enjoyed myself;

Maybe this was the right decision after all and the sunshine was so warm after so much cold and dreariness working in London and not getting on with family;

We landed and I spent one night in Perth and then caught a bus across the Nullarbor Desert to Adelaide;

The Nullarbor road was a red dust track back then, the journey was over 2,600 kilometres, the bus was old on its last trip;

It was 45 degrees (113 F) and the flies were appalling, crawling thickly over my face at every toilet stop;

The second day the air conditioning broke, we threw water over each other in an effort to keep cool;

We were all travelling as cheaply as possible, so when the back of the seat in front of me broke, we couldn’t stop laughing;

We reached Adelaide early morning two days later and I met Margie, a Canadian girl who had been hitchhiking around Australia with my friend’s friend;

She took me to a barbeque at someone’s house where I met my future husband (unbeknownst to me at the time);

We left by car with another guy early the next morning and headed to Tasmania, a little island state off the coast;

I went greyhound racing for the first (and last) time, it was all part of the adventure, Hobart was lovely but chilly;

In Canberra, we met Suzy, the friend I actually knew and her friend and the four of us prepared to sail to New Zealand;

Out of the spectacular Sydney Harbour, one of the most beautiful harbours in the world to hitch around both the islands, but that’s another story;

I went overseas and I found my home in Australia. It was never planned, it just happened!

The letter ‘o’ is straightforward to sound and to write, just a circle, round like an orange and even your mouth needs to be round to sound it out properly. It’s a neat little vowel and I find it fun to teach.

13 thoughts on “Overseas

  1. I loved reading about this adventure. It’s the kind of experience I wish for every young person. I have a brother who lives w/us. He is not mobile in the sense he can’t travel as we can. I’d love to globe trott more and not just on the vacation routes. I giggled , too, when I came to the part about the seat breaking; had to have been awful at the time but makes a wonderful story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, it was a whole series of adventures and I’m sure I’ll share more in the future. I’m starting to write stuff down for the grandkids as we never talk much face to face (thanks to ipads and phones) but maybe they’ll read a memoir later on!


  2. Oh, this is wonderful. (I know someone who has a similar met-my husband-at-a-barbecue-in-Australia story, believe it or not!) I think you might enjoy this prose poem. I know it kept me thinking beyond the reading, like this post will do. I love “O.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Magnificent “o” choice and what an amazing post – from this major decision, to the destinations, to the details of your descriptions. Just fascinating. I’ve heard Sydney is one of the most beautiful cities in the world – dreamt I made it there, once, all the way to the Opera House. Was so happy to see it that I just stood leaning my head against one of those famous exterior walls…not quite sure how…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks again for your lovely words. It is a beautiful city but I’ve only visited it twice, I hate big cities and wouldn’t want to live there. But the Harbour is magnificent and the best way to see it is leaving in a boat which is what we did. Absolutely stunning. My main annoyance was someone on the boat trip to Australia was helping to build the Sydney Opera House at the time of my visit and offered me a tour and I said no! Oh my goodness, have I ever regretted that decision, now that I know how beyond compare it is! What a dream you had!

      Liked by 1 person

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