theSmiths from Sheffield England
I've just taken early retirement from teaching. We're traveling overland to Australia on Ozbus 2 leaving on the 23rd September 07.
When does a journey start?
I think this is one of the most intriguing questions. Our journey started 30 something years ago while living and working in Jersey in the Channel Islands (chambermaid and beach cleaner) but instead of carry on we came back to Sheffield to get married and made the mistake of buying a house and settling down.
However, I think that my journey started even earlier in 1967 when I applied for and was given assisted passage to Australia. On that occasion I made the mistake of spending my supposed last summer and all my savings traveling around the folk festivals of England and fell in love with our culture and my wife to be. On this journey I'm taking both with me just to make sure there are no hitches.
On further reflection it probably started in a geography lesson at Pipworth Rd Junior School sometime in the 1950s. I've had an urge to travel ever since.
I have spent a few weeks looking at various blogs and have concluded that this is about the best. In short it's a complete service for travelers and the best way of keeping family, friends and colleagues informed of our whereabouts.
September 14th 2007
I started out by trying to work out when this journey started and of cause I failed. However, why it starts is probably a little easier and more relevant. We all have some of the nomad in us or as my mum called it the wander lust and all it needs to kick start it is some catalyst. In my case this was the sudden death of a very close friend in April this year. We had a drink on the Friday before Easter, as a little farewell, before he and his partner went off to play music in Majorca for a folk group and we went to stop with friends in France. The flimsy nature of life comes as a cruel and bitter lesson. Looking for some rationale, as humans tend to do in such ... read more
September 14th 2007
Ready for the off Well at last all the vaccinations are complete: Polio, Diptheria, Tetanus, Hepititus A and B (course of 3), Typhoid and last but by no means least Rabies (course of 3). Our thanks go out once again to Jean the Nursing Practitioner at our local health centre who managed to adminster all this needle totally pain free and then provided all the certificates to satisfy border beaurocracy. The cost of this pain free exercise thanks to the National Health was approximately about £270 (Rabies £210 for two and £36 for 200 Malaria tablets) give or take a couple of imodium tablets. The first aid and needle pack along with the mosquito net came half price (£43) thanks to the MountainLife store outside Castleford who are shutting down their camping section. At the ... read more
August 17th 2007
Health Issues Now had all the vaccinations except the final Rabies. Thanks to Jean our Nurse Practitioner and the National Health Service this has been a painless exercise and not too expensive. So far had Polio, Typhoid, Tetanus, Hepatitis A/B, Rabies 1 and 2 and all were free except the last ones which have cost £210 for both of us. This of cause does not include Malaria tablets which will cost £36 for 200. Had we decided to go for Malaron then the bill would have been in the £100s. Also there are tablets for Delhi belly and various other things. At this point we would like to give a big thank you to Jean for her skill and professionalism. Furthermore, she's going to spend her main summer holiday on a hospital boat off the coast ... read more
July 28th 2007
For anyone out there who is seriously contemplating doing something similar here are our observations so far. Even though Ozbus has now put this journey well within the grasp of anyone who's prepared to sit on a coach for 12 weeks with 20-30 strangers, nevertheless, there is still a great deal to do and the cost does not stop with the £3,750 single fare and the spending money. There's the hassle of visas photos, the pain of vaccinations and the confusion of what gear to buy. At the moment we're still sorting out the finances, aching from just two of seven injections and trying to get our heads round the visas or in Anne's case trying to get a scarf around her head to appease the Iranian officials. As for the gear we've already bought too ... read more