Coast to coast

Another week in Ferny Hills began, where I spend four days of each week caring for little Kirin and Charlie. Some days are exhausting keeping up with those two. Others are more enjoyable, depending on how they decide to behave that day and how much sleep I got the night before. I’m always happy to  see bright sunshine when I walk upstairs to begin my day with the kiddos because that means I can pass the time with them outside, while I enjoy the beautiful day. Rainy days can be hard to distract them and keep myself from falling asleep on the job. I am still learning how to embrace this whole nanny thing but I find myself becoming more and more content with the simplicity of it. Coming out of a very active college career, it has been a weird transition from having a ton to do 24/7 to having to find ways to keep myself busy and entertained, while also having to find ways to entertain others. At first, that transition was more confusing than it was enjoyable but now that I am feeling more relaxed and inspired by everything I’m experiencing, it feels good and I feel very lucky to have this time for myself.

This past weekend turned out to be spontaneous and way more adventurous than I originally planned.  Friday night I took the train into the city as usual and met Olivia and Hannah for dinner at an “American restaurant” in Southbank. They sold gourmet burgers, hotdogs and a variety of beers — American classics. On the beer list, I noticed PBR was $9.50. How outrageous?! Apparently it is the “trendy” beer here, only accessible to wealthy hipsters. Yeah it is becoming a “trendy” beer in America but it’s roots will always be in the redneck country towns and fraternity parties, always remaining a whooping $2 or whatever it is. After a good laugh over the price of PBR and an excellent burger, Hannah, her brother Joey, and I drove to their home in Noosa on the coast to stay the night.

WHAT A PLACE. Getting to see Olivia and Hannah’s home and their beautiful little beach town was a last minute adventure, and was amazing. Hannah and I went on a hike from one part of the Sunshine coast to Noosa beach, where we went for a swim in the ocean at then end. I took in the most incredible views of the teal colored water and waves crashing on the headlands all along the coastal hike. We climbed over rocks on the beaches as we stared at sailboats floating in waters so clear and blue, you wanted to run straight in. I kept reminding Hannah how lucky she is to call that place home – no wonder they’re critical of other beaches.

We drove back from Noosa the same day to make it back for Brisbane’s signature, annual event called Riverfire. Riverfire marks the end of Brisbane Festival – an art and entertainment festival that celebrates all the art happening in the city. At night, fireworks are set off from multiple points in the city and parties happen all over. A bunch of Hannah’s friends were lucky enough to be able to watch the fireworks from her apartment as she lives on top of a hill that has a view of the city skyline. It was amazing to be able to party in the comfort of her home while watching the sky light up above the city of Brisbane. We toasted to each other, Riverfire 2016, living in Australia and then of course went out and lit up the town. Leslie and I were the only ones who made it out of the apartment but had a great time bar hopping. We ended up at a place called the Empire Hotel in the Valley that was playing great music and danced onstage with a handful of Aussies for hours while my foot bled from some girl stepping on my foot with her heel. What a night.

Watching Riverfire from Hannah's apartment

Watching Riverfire from Hannah’s apartment

Sunday we cured our hangovers by trying out a new breakfast place and then laying around the fake beach at Southbank (a pool with sand that looks like a beach but obviously isn’t), eating more, then laying around more by the river. It was a day well spent enjoying Southbank’s sights and food.

Monday another spontaneous adventure happened when I agreed to go with Olivia and a couple of her friends to surf on the Gold Coast. I have no clue how to surf but want to learn and figured this would be a great chance to try it out. I helped them strap the boards onto the top of the car and we headed for the water. The surf ended up being completely flat but we had fun messing around in the water with the boards and enjoying the sunny day on the beach. It was a lovely beach too – called Rainbow Bay – where you have a view of the Surfer’s Paradise skyline from the water.

I headed back to the suburbs later after arriving back to Hannah’s apartment, feeling a bit anxious to start another week with the kids after such an incredible weekend. I have to say it hasn’t been a bad week though – Kirin is being much nicer than he was last week and I’m still learning to feel more and more at home living here. I went to the post office today with Camille and sent several postcards to friends and family so be on the look out 🙂 As beautiful as this place is and as thankful I am for every part of this experience, my people at home are never out of my thoughts.

Love,

Anni

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