Places I’ve been

I’ve already posted about places where I’ve lived, so I thought I’d follow up by summarising places I’ve visited on holidays and so forth. These won’t be in chronological order, and I’ll only include places I’ve been after 1983.

I’ve visited all Australian states except Western Australia. The furthest west I’ve been is the Head of the Bight, a mere eight hundred kilometres from the border.

I’ve also never been to any part of the country north of the Tropic of Capricorn, but I have visited some southern parts of Queensland and the Northern Territory. A particularly memorable and exhilerating moment was having a wedge-tailed eagle hover just above my head while I was standing on the top of Ayres Rock. As a fifteen-year-old with energy to spare after the climb, I took an adventurous walk to one of the small patches of vegetation that grow on top of the rock. The eagle suddenly emerged from the bushes as I approached, perhaps expecting me to disturb a mouse.

In Sydney I attended the January 1989 Whovention — a convention celebrating 25 years of Doctor Who on Australian television — wearing a costume made from (among other things) a garbage bag and some liquorice allsorts. While Dad and I went there, Mum and Rebecca visited the aquarium, and on other days we went to various places together (e.g. Three Sisters, Taronga Zoo, etc). This wasn’t my first time in Sydney, as I’d been born there and had also passed through on our 1983 return to Australia.

Uncle David’s family lives in Melbourne, so I’ve been to Victoria a few times, and to various stops along the way (Grampians, Ballarat, etc). I’ve also been to Tasmania a couple of times, most notably to meet Katrina, who would later be the wife of my cousin Robert, son of Brian. When we went white-water rafting there, the only person to fall out of the boat was the guide.

As for overseas places, we visited Europe again in early 2000: my sister’s 21st was in January that year and my Dad’s 50th in February, so it seemed a ripe time for a holiday. We caught up with friends in Scotland, visited places in England and Wales, went by ferry across the channel, visited the Netherlands and Germany (staying with friends in both places), and took Austria and Switzerland by train. Our German hosts – the Schellenberger family – are from Neubrunn.

I had to return to Australia for study, but the rest of my family stayed on, joined by my grandfather (Papa) who took my place, and spent some time in France. The main event was some sort of memorial event for a relative who died in the war (which was, as you might expect, another factor underlying the trip to Europe).

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