Friday, May 11, 2007

Four Years in Australia Went Fast

I arrived in Tasmania via Sydney in May of 2003. Since then, I have lived in two towns in Tasmania, two in Victoria and two in New South Wales. By far, I prefer Hobart and Binalong Bay to Sydney and Melbourne. To those who also love Tasmania, no explanation is necessary. To those who love Sydney and Melbourne, no explanation is possible.

So here I am 4 years on. I'm no longer doing what I set out to do, but I am no less a Tasmaniac. Just love this place and pace, and 10 weeks in USA convinced me this is my true home. The Department of Immigration & Citizenship willing.

I have not updated my blog for 5 months because I've been engrossed in red tape of a visa extension, so I can continue to live and contribute to my chosen community. In the interim I have turned 6-0, lost touch with some mainlanders and made new friends on this tiny island at the edge of the planet. I have quit working on two enterprises and started two new endeavors. I never run out of ideas and fun things to do, albeit sometimes run out of energy and funds to live larger. C├ęst le vie!

Until the next chapter, Dee

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Destination: OUT of this World

Yes, that's an apt description of Tasmania. But if a picture is worth a thousand descriptive words, then see the camera atop my house in Binalong Bay pointing at the Bay of Fires. The view bankrupts the English language in trying to say it any better.

It's good to get lost, and this past week I drove all over parts of Tassie I'd never been before - and felt lost a bit. But made my way back 2200 kms and 7 days later to my favorite spot on the island, up here in the NE corner where the day breaks first in Australia. And where the crayfish (lobsters) are the best in the world. Gotta go get in my wet suit and catch one for dinner.

Ciao 4 now.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Destination Daylesford: Come for ChillOut Festival & Weekends

'Tho I camped during ChillOut Festival in years past, I've had the opportunity to return to Daylesford with a local, and next time I'm staying at a B&B! The ChillOut Festival is every Labour Day weekend in March.

As a former resort B&B operator, I can relate to the guys who run the two gay owned and operated traditional B&B's in Daylesford. There are other GOO properties, but hard to find outside Rainbow Tourism, GalStays and SameSexTravel.

Among the OUT properties on Rainbow Tourism is Holyrood House, left, and Old Chilli, right, both boutique places with gay male hosts and traditional B&B experience. They are located within a few minutes of Daylesford CBD, but you'll want a car or bicycle for the steep hills. I walked from my lodging on the hill - and all around town - but needed a ride back to home base with the shopping bags!

Write me if you want first-hand photos and dee-tails of your prospectice visit there. Dee Farrell. Cheers.

USA Photo Album: Trip Memories with Friends & Family

Here are some of the characters I met during my travels...thanks for the memories.

I travelled through 10 airports, flew more than 30,000 kms, and wore out 3 suitcases. Stopovers included Auckland (New Zealand) Chicago (both airports), Indianapolis, Philadelphia, Oakland, Kansas City (easiest), Denver International (favorite) and LAX airports (worst), and of course home port, Melbourne's Tullamarine Airport.

If this is Tuesday, it must be Tasmania. I'm here for an extended rest by the seashore, watching lazy waves, snorkeling for abalone, fishing for flathead, and hanging out by the oyster farm and fishing boats for the daily catch and harvest.

More travel news from the edge of the planet - when it happens. Ciao 4 now, Dee

Dee-touring down-under again: Good to be "home"

My long stay in America was punctuated by a funeral on the front end and casting a ballot on the tail end in my homestate of Colorado. I trust my presence (virtual and physical) made a difference at both.

Marvelous Melbourne looked very mellow upon my arrival, and it feels great to be home. But I didn't linger long, as was swept away for anti-jet lag mind and body relaxation therapies in delicious Daylesford. Thanks to Mackie for making my afternoon possible with Ann and her magic fingers and hot rocks.

Later, I discovered the new wine bar and had my prophetic photo taken out front. Good luck to former Tasswegian Tim and his partner Devon on their new endeavor with local and international wines. It's sure to become the epicentre for fine wine and food from the region. Soon you'll be able to book winery tours with them whilst sampling the local vintages, arranged by Schoffered Tours.

Everyone's personal detour or journey should include a stop in Daylesford; I'll be back in March for the annual ChillOut Festival, no worries!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Deetouring around the good ole USA

I'm stateside for 10 weeks to visit friends and family. After my birthfather died in June in Wisc. and my birthmother in Indiana had a series of strokes, I decided it was better to move up my business trip by 5 weeks to make sure I didn't miss another funeral and burial.

I'm in the middle of the cornfields, next to nowhere, somewhere in Mid-America. Dial up, not broadband, beer, not good Aussie wine, reading, not stupid TV & movies. Thankfully, my mother is good company and I'm getting a lot of oral history while we build photo albums of my journeys and of her many grandchildren.

Diversions besides counting corn cobs include cycling around the lake, pub and festival crawling for bluegrass music, and golfing in the middle of acres and acres of soybeans.

It is strange to be back, but looking forward to meeting up with my friends across my trwavels to PA, CA, KS and CO before departing for DownUnder home in mid-Nov.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Where am I now?

Melbourne's been very FRESH, so I'm currently on the sunshine coast in the sunshine state...
On Sunday, our tour group left Brisbane for Straddie Island. Tomorrow I'm on my own and headed up to the Great Barrier Reef off Cairns and Port Douglas, the tropical end, for some more fun 'n sun. No diving this trip, just R&R by the pool. It's been 10 years since I've visited Queensland, and finding it very upmarket this go around. That's good for tourism!

Sunday, May 28, 2006

May in Melbourne

It's been a busy first quarter, what with relocating (back again) to Melbourne, starting up a branch office for Rainbow Tourism and DeeTours DownUnder, and scooter shopping.
The long-awaited "company car" has arrived from Korea, the home of modern scooters like this one called MIO and sold through Bowell in Australia. The colour is cool spearmint and she's taking me to Ricketts Point for a check out ride this Sunday.

Happy Trails, Dee-touring Dee

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Happy detouring this season!

Happy Holidays, friends and family, wherever you are this Christmas and New Year's.
Some of you are travelling and many are staying close to hearth and home. I'm repeating my beach & bubbly routine, returning to same spot on Bondi Beach where I have been for the past three Christmas Days. This year, I have a special French Champagne and a good book to read - plus plenty of sun tan oil and block. It may reach 100 F/38 C and that means there will be thousands more flocking to Sydney's iconic beach. (Click here if you have broadband and want to see MY BEACH live on webcam. I'm the one wearing a new black swimsuite and waving at the camera .)

The day after Chrissie is a national holiday downunder - called Boxing Day - and this year I think I will go to Coogee beach (I have been working on weekends at a apartment-hotel on the beach) . I want to steer away from the 12,000 Pomies (Brittish tourists) that flock to Bondi each Boxing Day. Last year, of course, was the traumatic tsunami in Indonesia, and I expect there will be memorial services on the beach and on everyone's mind of course. Hard to believe that as bad as that was, Katrina and the devastion in Pakistan/Kashmir were even worse. What a year to forget!

I am leaving Sydney after nearly a year to return on the New Year to Melbourne, an easier city to live in, although with not so nice beaches on the bay instead of ocean. Maybe this is the year some of you will put OZ on your itinerary and come visit me in Victoria.

I am looking forward to zooming around my new hometown on a Vespa (Santa's bringing me a sexy black helmet; and I'm buying the scooter once I'm settled from the move) and my New Year's Resolution is to establish my official handicap (it will be a high number as a golf hacker:>) ).

What's happening in your corner of the world? Please let me hear from you, either through comments on this blog, a phone call or email.

Cheers from dee-touring Dee downunder.