Hi I live in Perth. I work in the mining industry often on a fly-in fly-our roster. The 12 hour days, from 6am-6pm and 6pm-6am are pretty intense. But the money, which finances my travels is very good.

URL of my personel web site is:
Twitter: @derondaM

Oceania » Australia » Western Australia September 19th 2008

Reaching the end of a walk along the Busselton jetty, the longest wooden jetty in the Southern Hemisphere I am more the 1.5 kilometers from the shore. Necessity dictated its length. Commenced in 1853, a 162 meter jetty was completed by 1865. Horses pulled carts, transporting timbers such a jarrah and karri to the ships. However the shallow waters coupled with shifting sand and larger ships meant the length had to be extended. An additional 132 meters had been added by 1875. Further extensions in 1887,1890,1894 and 1911 increased its length to 1841 meters. In 1909 a steam train replaced the horse and cart. This was replaced by diesel in the 1960's. Closed to shipping in 1972 the original plan was for the jetty to be demolished. Public objection to the demolisation of this now ... read more

Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Kangaroo Island March 12th 2008

Located 13 kilometers west of the Fleurieu and south of the Yorke peninsulas in South Australia, Kangaroo Island is Australia's third largest island after Tasmania and Melville Island. Its it approximately 155kms long and 55kms wide with a total area of about 4350 square kilometers. It population is 4350 people, 500,000 wallabies, 15,000 kangaroos and 25,000 koalas. Also amongst the inhabitants are echidnas, platypuses, sea lions, seals and dozens of bird species. Though I have lived many years in Adelaide, I have never visited. Now aboard a ferry boarded at Cape Jervis, on the tip of the Fluerieu Peninsula, I am hoping to meet a few of its citizens. Landing at Penneshaw late in the afternoon I decide to drive to the town of American River for my first night on the island. A small community ... read more
Admirals Arch

Oceania » Australia » South Australia » Eyre Peninsula September 22nd 2007

Up at 4:30AM to catch the ferry which runs from Wallaroo to Lucky Bay Cowell on the eastern coast of the Eyre Peninsula, South Australia. The Eyre Peninsula was named after Edward John Eyre (1815-1901) who with his aboriginal friend, Wylie, was the first to cross Australia from east to west. Leaving Lucky Bay I drive inland reaching Cleve. What is there to say about Cleve, that is has a park with painted farm machinery, a dunny not initially recognized as a dunny and murals depicting pioneer history. But the mural that caught my attention was was the one that appeared to be painted in the same style as the creations of May Gibbs. May Gibbs (1877- 1969) , perhaps an Australian version of Beatrice Potter, created the Gumnut Babies, Snugglepot and Cuddlepie. Born in England, ... read more
Mural at Cleve
Wheat Silos
Waterloo Bay

Oceania » Australia » Western Australia » Albany March 19th 2007

Escaping form Perth for a few days I drive along the coast from Walpole to Albany. Attractions during this trip are the Valley of Giants, inlet beaches and the former whaling city of Albany. Walpole, 450 kms south-west of Perth is located on Walpole Inlet which drains into the larger Nornalup Inlet and hence into the Southern Ocean. Established in the 1930's as a group settlement for farmers its industries grew to include timber milling, beef and dairy farming. Today its main claim to fame is the Red and Yellow Tingle Tree. With a population of 500 people it is a very quiet center with shops closed by 8PM. The Red Tingle (Eucalpytus Jacksonii) is found only in the vicinity of the Walpole-Nornalup National Park. It can grow up to 75 metres high. Its shallow root ... read more
Red Tingle
Giant Red Tingle
Ocean Beach

Asia » Cambodia » North » Angkor November 22nd 2006

Pre Dawn at Ankor. I buy a three day pass for $US40. It has my photograph embedded in it which means it will be a nice souvenier to take home as it cant be on-sold to someone else. An annoyance is the days are consecutive. I would have thought a three days pass where the days can be taken over five days or a week would be better for general business in Siem Reap. But a 3 consecutive day pass it is, and I hope I am not templed out by the end of Day 2. Inside the grounds I am immediately accosted by the sellers of guide books. Guide books that I cannot at this early hour even see, let alone read. Following the pre-dawn herd I made my way along the causeway and branch ... read more
Portal to Ankor Thom
Leper King Terrace

Asia » Laos November 17th 2006

With nose pressed up against the bus window, the Laotion countryside glides past. The decision to take the bus rather the fly from Luang Prabang to Vientiane is correct. A ribbon of bitumen winds its way through the forested karst to Vangvieng. Karst is a topography where carbonate rocks (limestone, dolomite or marble) have been dissolve by carbonated water resulting in a landscape consisted of steep gorges, sinkholes, disappearing and reappearing rivers and springs. Though is can be seen from the road that much of it has been cleared. Roadside villages consisting of a few thatched houses mounted on stilts are located every few kilometers. Some have houses with satellite dishes, many do not. Often the village is located on the edge of what seems to be looking from the bus, a precipice. I suppose people ... read more
Country Side
Monks Eating
Vat Sasaket

Asia » Laos » West » Luang Prabang November 14th 2006

Luang Prabang is small, small enough to see by meandering around on foot. Strolling along the Mekong towards Wat Xieng Thong, I am diverted by a riverside cafe selling banana fruit shakes. Been having a lot of these lately:) Located in the north of the historical area, where the River Khan enters the Mekong,is Wat Xieng Thong, built by King Settathirat in 1560. It can be entered from the banks of the Mekong. Directly in front is the Sim(main temple). Lower than its Thai counterpart it has a low sweeping three tiered roof. At its back is a glass mosaic encrusted into a red background depicting a Bodi tree. Inside a huge Golden Budda is seated in Earth Witness pose. The ceiling decorated with dharma wheels is supported by golden stenciled wooden columns. Near the sim ... read more
Main Budda Xieng Throng
Mosaic of Village Life
Funerary Chapel

Asia » Laos November 12th 2006

Leaving Chiang Klong in Thailand we cross the Mekong River into Laos landing at Ben Huay Sai. Here, any delusion of group travel held since leaving Changmai disintegrates. Its every person for themselves trying to get papers processed and passed through immigration. Through immigration I am whisked off to a cafe and told to stay. Half an hour later I am moved across the street to another cafe, and once again am told to wait. Maybe they were hoping I would buy something, maybe it was disorganisation. Finally I am shunted onto the slow boat to Luang Prabang. The boat, about sixty feet long and ten feet wide, complete with wooden bench seats. A few had a thin plastic cushion which were quickly acquired and poccessed by the chosen few. Provisions, not for us, were loaded ... read more
River Rocks
River Life

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai November 7th 2006

Arrived in Changmai on the last day of the Loy Krathong festival, which was a bitter sweet surprise. Sweet because of the parades and the girls dressed prettily in traditional customs, but bitter because of the fate of the Kom Tams. In Sukothai they appeared to rise, rise and rise all the way to the heavens. But here from the balcony of my hotel, I could see them, fuel spent, falling, drifting and finally hitting the ground to become ...GARBAGE:( Next day was a Buddist holiday which meant all the Wats were closed, really and truly, not some tuk-tuk drivers scam. With the wats closed I go for a walk along the Ping River. Somewhat disappointing I thought. Not only is the water a dirty brown colour but there is also much floating domestic rubbish floating. ... read more
Wat Phra Singh
Wat Chedi Luang

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Sukhothai November 4th 2006

Arriving in Sukothai in time for the last two days, Saturday and Sunday, of the Loy Krathrong festival I consider myself most fortunate to acquire accommodation a kilometer from the historical park. Having never attending this festival before it seemed appropriate to see it here, where it first occurred over 600 years ago. Legend says that the first floating krathrong was placed by Noppomo, consort to King Loethai.The festival is now celebrated all over Thailand on the first full full moon of the 12th month of the traditional thai lunar calender. This means it falls in November, this year around the 5th. A krathong is a small raft made from banana tree bark and folded banana leaves. It is decorated with flowers, candles and incense. Some have an included coin. This is for the spirits which ... read more
Burning of Incest
Wat Mahathat at Dusk

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