Back to Darwin… and counting down to leaving

Friday the 13th – what a day to fly! Which may explain why my flight was moderately empty. It’s also my mum’s birthday, so maybe everyone else was having a party for her.

Mel wasn’t in a fit state to drive (or walk, come to mention it) at 6:15am, so Matt drove me to the airport. My last impression of Mel is someone lying in bed in a semi-coma, apologising for not being able to get up… so I remember her as someone who parties far too hard, which is no bad thing!

We made it to the airport with ten minutes to spare and I rattled off a blog post or two while I waited. Yay for free wireless! Quantas called me on board shortly afterwards and we took off dot on schedule.

I’d not had time for breakfast when I left the house, so it’s a good job I was with the only non-budget airline in Oz as it meant I got fed. It was still the cheapest flight I could get. Air fares here are barmy. A really cute little girl in the seat in front kept playing peek-a-boo with me and that helped while the time away, as did ploughing through another Grisham and snoozing for the last hour.

Darwin was as hot as I remember it, and the shuttle bus had me at the Cav within 15 minutes. Quick check in and back in the old favourite room 36. Esther was out at work and shortly after I started sorting my things out I met Katie, the only other person in the dorm. She’s a vet from the UK looking at settling here and in a fluster about trying to find a house to live in.

The kitchen at the hostel is out of order as they’re refurbishing it. It was supposed to re-open today, but is now scheduled for tomorrow. We’ll see… I argued with the reception staff as I’d not been told this and they were only dishing out free dinner vouchers for the Queen Vic, not lunch ones. As I budget 50c for lunch (beans on toast!), this means a big increase in expenses as eating out is much dearer. We ended up with five meal vouchers which should take us past when the kitchen is available again. Hopefully that will balance things out.

The rest of the day went predictably and Darwin-y enough. Down to the pool at 5:00, Esther back from work (lovely to see her again), the Vic for (free) dinner, back for a quick change and then out for a few beers. Shennanigans was our chosen venue as the Vic itself was a little quiet. A covers band was playing some decent tunes, the beer was cold and the company good.

Between lack of sleep and five pints of Coopers Pale, I enjoyed a good night’s kip!

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