Published: August 2nd 2012August 1st 2012
I wake up well before my alarm and lie in bed listening to the rain while I wait for it to go off. My last hot shower
for the foreseeable future and throw all the bedding and towels onto wash. I’m just heading out the door to say goodbye to Kim when Trev calls to say there’ll be a 90 minute delay in leaving.
Say my goodbyes and head with Trev, Trish and Gavin (Trish’ son) in the minibus to Perth. It starts to rain. Trev drops Trish and Gavin off and then drops me off undercover at the Joondalup station
. He wont take any petrol money.
A train ride into the city and I’m happy
. People must sense it because a lot of people start conversations with me. Including a woman on the train who asks where I’m headed, I really don’t think she expect me to say Cape Town.
First stop in the city is the YHA. I leave my backpack in the store room and pay for a bus ride to the airport later that night. I stop for tea and soup cafe 51
and head to the bank to close my
The humidity makes the city look like it's shrouded in fog
accounts. I almost make it to the bank when I pass a cinema and see that the Avengers
is just starting. I make it to the bank just as it starts to rain. And they can’t help me unless I call Barclays and get my IBAN
I use the last of my credit on the call, but get what I need. Just need to see if the money turns up. They lock me in; I’m the last customer of the day
It’s amazing how carefree you can feel when all you have is a day bag and $50. Prometheus
is just starting as I walk past the cinema (again) and Brave
starts almost as soon as that finishes. Luckily I have nowhere else to be. A little voice in my head tells me to not risk missing my bus or screwing up my plans so I take a wander around the city one last time and stop for tea
It’s ten o’clock when I get to Perth International
and I can’t even check in until three. I read. I snooze. And I grumble about how busy the airport is at all hours. Even when it’s closed. I check
I didn't go in, but I hear it's kinda good
my bag in at 03h00; it weighs 14 kg
. I recon I can get it lighter. When I first started travelling someone warned me that eventually I would start to play a game to see how light I could get my bag.
The flight is OK. It’s cold and the touch screen on my entertainment doesn’t work, but there’s a million films to watch (including Avengers). I have an aisle seat, centre aisle and the seat next to me is empty. August 1st
I don’t hurry my way through customs in Dubai
. Once out of the departures area I get jumped on by a driver offering to show me around the city. $50 an hour
. It sounds (and probably is) expensive, but I fancy playing tourist
for the day so hire him for three hours (600 dirham or AED) and hit all the typical tourist hotspots; 7-star hotel, lots of 5-star hotels, shopping mall, harbour, artificial island. I haven’t got a thermometer so I have to believe him when he says the outside temperature is 48 degrees. Feels about right.
The bulk of the city is thirteen years old
or younger. The architecture rangers
View from the back of a mall
from ultra modern to what you’d expect dessert tribes men to build. Everything has air-con
, even the bus shelters. I’d love to come back when I have more time. And a girl. And a lot more money.
The tours ends when the driver drops me off at another mall and gives me directions to finding food and catching the metro
back when I’m done. He doesn’t tell me it’s Ramadan
and whilst I can still buy food I can’t eat it in public. I wander the shops and find a quiet spot to read until the sunsets and I get (and eat) a bite (21 AED).
A train ride back to Terminal 3
costs 4.5 AED. All that time in Australia has made me get used to Australian prices; in comparison food and fuel here is cheap and land and labour are (very) expensive. I treat myself to an Oreo milkshake
whilst I wait and the guy that serves me blesses me
when I place the order.
Looking online it looks like my next leg is nine and a half hours
. I’m going to be in serious pain by the time I find bed. I spend most
OK, it's only a few years old, but it's great architecture AND it has air-con
of my time in the airport walking around so that my legs don’t lock up. I get an hours sleep at the gate.
There are more photos below