A Six Month Odyssey

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March 15th 2020
Published: March 15th 2020
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12th March 2020

Sofia, Bulgaria

Bulgaria just keeps getting better and better, and Sofia is beautiful!We have booked our ongoing tickets to Belgrade Serbia, although this time they have asked for our phone number in the event that the border is closed. Mmmm!

Our apartment is really central again and we've found the local supermarket and walked to the centre of town.The free walking tour tomorrow will show us everything we need to see, so better wait until then to explore more.

13th March 2020


Being next to the tram line can be a real advantage. When you are on the first floor right on the tram line, it is not conducive to good sleep when it feels and sounds like the tram is running right through your bedroom every 60 seconds from 6am!

Our walking tour was awesome and covered most of the sites we wanted to see, and left us with plenty of time to revisit some, and find new ones. The weather is divine.

We had the most delicious dinner at a little resaurant called Aubergine tonight. Pork belly and Pork Knuckle! Knackers was pretty excited to get alot of pork on his fork! This border situation is looking serious and one of the Airbnb's I've contaced on Serbia has advised me not to book.I already have! ?

This is all going pear shaped, I can feel it in my waters!



Well, the Six Month Odyssey is about to come to an end after only 2 months. ? Covid19, you win!

We made the difficult decision this morning to come home. I say difficult because although we know we have to do it for our safety, it is so difficult to say goodbye to this little holiday dream of ours......a holiday that would have seen us explore 20 different countries, and reunite us with some very special friends around Europe.

To say we are gutted is an understatement, and we are still probably a little shocked really. We never believed it would come to this but today, when we got up and we realised that this city had been forced to pretty much shut down overnight, reality set in. It's only going to become more problematic.

We still have a trip out to the Rila Monastery planned for tomorrow at this stage, so hopefully it goes ahead and we finish it all off with something beautiful.The most important thing to remember is that we have each other and we are safe and healthy........for now. Self quarantining may mean we kill each other when we get home!!

Shane says: I'm absolutely gutted. Was loving this trip. Just getting to the Balkans. Missing out on so much. Can't believe it's all coming to an end. Well I'll get to spend time with our grandkids. Not much else to say really. Gutted. And I have to pay Australian prices for beer!

Sharls says: You're supposed to say something suitably romantic like " We still have each other"! Or, "No, sweetie, I am absolutely not going to drown my sorrows in that bottle of Whiskey I just bought at the corner shop!"

15th March 2020


Final entry: (thank god, I hear you rejoice!)

We drive to Rila Monastery and Boyana Monastery this morning with Hugh, a young guy from Perth travelling on his own. We met on the walking tour. Its been freezing this morning, and it also snowed, which cheered me up no end.
Rila MonasteryRila MonasteryRila Monastery

Ceiling fresco

The monasteries were stunning as they always are, and after being dropped to the bus station to try and recoup our fares, we caught the metro back to our apartment where we now sit, chowing down on a baguette lathered in butter and vegemite. Or is that a slab of butter topped with some baguette and vegemite? Now THAT makes me smile?.

We are so thankful for the time we have had. We've seen so many amazing things and formed a couple of beautiful friendships that I absolutely cherish!

Thanks to all of you that encouraged us to keep writing the journal. Let's face it, I would have no recollection of what we've done in 3 months time without it.

We are truly blessed!

Shane says: That's not what you were saying last night whilst I was drinking my bottle of scotch. A few F words flew about. Potty mouth that one, I tells you.

Had to ease the pain of returning somehow. Oh well, it's into the self isolation cage we go for two weeks. I'm thinking a Denzel Washington movie week. Man on Fire, Training Day will get hammered.

What to do after that is the big question. Go back to work? Take off up the coast? Go live in a winery for a month? Don't have to be back at work until 27th June. Two weeks in solitary confinement will answer these posers.

** Special thanks goes out to my beautiful wife, whose unwavering support in any crisis, never ceases to amaze me. She's the one you want standing in your corner when it all goes pear shaped. ( unless she's trapped in an elevator of course, and then she has every right to lose her shit!)

Sharls says: Naawww, thanks Knackers ?

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Juicial building

17th March 2020

good call
Guys you've made the right call to come home. Travel would just become more and more frustrating! See you soon.
17th March 2020

See you soon
Hi toots, yes it was becoming very problematic and now there'sa DFAT request to return as well. Happy Birthday to you xx xx Loads of love xx

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