From the Sunshine State to the Red Centre

Guy continues to escape winter with a move from Florida to Adelaide

My blog entries have been very sparse recently, and this is a trend that I intend to reverse starting NOW! Since I last wrote, I have said goodbye to TUI Marine in Florida, flown back to the UK for our Learning and Development week and have for almost four weeks been based at Adventure Tours Australia, based in Adelaide, Australia.

With a day to sort myself out in Adelaide, I moved into my flat south of the CBD, and set out on the quest of finding a bike and a mobile phone, while also trying to adjust to the new time zone. The day after, I got up at 0430 to start a 6 day tour into the Outback. As soon as the bus pulled up at the office, I was delighted to find that a good bulk of my fellow passengers were German, obviously presenting a great opportunity for practice! The ultra-strong Australian dollar has sent British tourists elsewhere (and those that remain have stayed on the East Coast), but many young Germans still come here to work, earning good wages, particularly in agriculture – partly explaining the super-high prices for food here. There certainly seem to be less Brits about than when I visited on my gap year, six years ago. The tour gave a really good taste of the best that Adventure Tours’ has to offer – visiting weird outback opal mining towns with underground houses, the famous Flinders mountain range, Uluru, King’s Canyon and ending up in the second largest town in the Northern Territory, Alice Springs (pop. 26,000). We had an absolutely excellent tour guide, Anna Brown, who was really passionate about everywhere we went and saw – I certainly feel much more enthused to find out a lot more about Aboriginal politics, history and origins as a result – and of course the vast expanses of emptiness that make up most of Australia. Anna and I are becoming study buddies – although I’ll have to do a LOT of reading to catch up.

 I haven’t told you anything about my project yet, but will next week – as well as the Adelaide Fringe and Film Festival which launched last week. It’s certainly making this city a great place to be at the moment. Now, off for Friday night office drinks – I’m not sure I can deal with any more people trying to drag me away from my desk…

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