Jamie and Sophie's Adventure

Jamie Longmore and Sophie Jones travel the world

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Alice Springs

Just a quickie, we are currently in Alice Springs and leave tomorrow to go and see Uluru (Ayers Rock). We've had a good time so far, there's 13 of us and we have a long haired, long bearded guide called Sauce who lives up to Australian stereotypes well. He also wears really short shorts all the time.
We've done lots of things that I'll write about in more detail next time perhaps. We've seen crocodiles, held snakes, slept in a swag, seen the devil's marbles, drank at the oldest pub in the Northern Territory (Daly Waters), swam in a waterfall at Katherine Gorge and more.
We've paid a bit extra to be upgraded from a dorm to a double room tonight but we won't be in it long as we get picked up at ridiculous o'clock tomorrow.
Apparantly Alice Springs isn't safe at night so it's a good job the pub is only 100 yards down the road.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

6 Day Trip Tomorrow

It seems like we have been in Darwin forever, there's really very little to do here but we have kept ourselves entertained by going to the cinema, a couple of the pubs that are decent, swimming in our pool, etc.
When we first went into our dorm we were shocked, there was one occupent, an Aussie called Campbell (that's his first name) and he had been living in squalor. There was food everywhere which was attracting hundreds of ants, his clothes were distributed across the entire room and it also didn't smell too pleasant. We managed to make it a bit tidier but were quite releaved when he checked out. We've had a few other roommates but no-one has stayed for more than a night, two of them weren't even in the room for more than 10 minutes before leaving (something we said?). One said it was too hot for her and another guy had lined up a hot date so he upgraded to a motel room.
We've seen 2 films, Deja Vu which wasn't bad and Hannibal Rising which was a bit disappointing.
We found a pub that does meals for under 1 pound 50, they obviously aren't great but they were OK to have a few nights, Sophie has cooked some tasty meals for us and we have been to a few restaurants the other nights.
The Aboriginals here are absolute nutters, they are always shouting in the street and we saw a couple of them having a fist fight the other day, a man and a woman. They also really stink of sweat, we were on a bus full of them and it was quite overpowering.
There have been some spectacular storms here during the nights with almost constant lightning which is good to watch, though having been struck by lightning when I was younger (yes it is true) I'm always a little worried.
Tomorrow we are going on a 6 day trip to Alice Springs, taking in the sites and doing various activities on the way. You can see our itinerary by clicking here. We are getting picked up at 5:30am which is a bit unfortunate.
Not many of you have bothered texting us... if you're worried about the cost, goto www.o2.co.uk and register your number on that (regardless of what network you're on), you can send 10 messages a month via the internet when you do that.
Don't know if we'll get online in the next week or if we'll have to wait until Melbourne so make sure we have some messages and emails waiting for us when we arrive. Haven't heard from some of you for a long long time.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Text us

We now have phone numbers so feel free to text us, though put your names at the end of the text as I don't have anyone stored in my phone! We are on Vodafone. Any of you that are in Oz, let us know your numbers.
Jamie - +61410982712
Sophie - +61410982891
By the way we moved into the dorm today... lovely! :-/

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

G'day mates

Well here we are in the land down under. Our flight to Darwin was alright apart from the fact we arrived at 4:30am. We are staying at The Cavenagh which is a very nice place with a big pool. We had a room booked for two nights and then planned to move into the dorms. Our room is great, fairly big, nice bathroom, fridge and a flatscreen TV. We are staying in the room for one extra night because Sophie is a bit poorly with a bad stomach so we're hoping the extra bit of luxury will help her recovery.
Darwin is a strange city.. it's like a ghost town, there is more life in Malvern! There are quite a lot of Aboriginal people here and they are very strange, walking round with no shoes on, lying down in the middle of the path and shouting randomly to no-one in particular.
We are going to get sim cards later today so you will be able to text us if you so desire.
Some other observations: Australia's version of Deal or No Deal is not even close to the quality of our own with Noel. Watching Neighbours here is weird. I haven't seen one person throwing a few snags on the barbie yet. People don't actually walk around on their heads.
Happy Valentines Day!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Goodbye Asia

This will be a quick, rushed blog as we have to leave soon to get our flight to Australia, I'll try and get online soon in Oz to fill you in on the things I forget to mention now.
We had a good week with Sophie's parents, going on a sight seeing tour and seeing a traditional Balinese house, a temple, Ubud, a volcano and various other bits and pieces. We had lots of tasty meals (Thanks very much to Sophie's Dad!), though unfortunately after trying one of Sophie's Mum's mussels one night I was on the toilet all the next day, being poorly from both ends, I will be avoiding seafood like that from now on.
We went to the Gili Islands for 4 days, we stayed on Gili Trawangan which was quite good, though there's nothing to do there really other than go diving (which is why we went there). It seems to be a place for druggies to go as everywhere was advertising that they sell magic mushrooms and we got offered (and turned down) marijuana on many occasions. Also they have no motorized vehicles, the only form of transport is by horse and cart! There are no dogs on the island but there are more cats than people.
We did our PADI advanced open water course which was great fun, we had a french guy named Louis with a funny shark tattoo on his torso as our instructor. We did 5 dives to improve our skills; peak performance buoyancy, deep dive (30m/100ft), a ship wreck (no hidden treasure though), a night dive which was quite scary as it was pitch black apart from our little torches and underwater navigation where we had to use compasses and natural navigation to find our way round.
So now we are all prepared to dive on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
We are in Darwin for 10 days or so and then do a 6 day trip to Alice Springs and then fly to Melbourne, I think we get to Melbourne on March 1st.
I have no idea what the internet cafe situation is like in Australia but I'm sure I'll be able to get on sometime in the next week.
Thanks for the comments - Aled good to hear from you! Brandon, give me an email (jamielongmore [at] hotmail dot co dot uk)

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Surfing in Bali

After the Philippines we went back to Kuala Lumpur where we Watched an awful film caled "Epic Movie" and Went to Petronos Twin Towers (Supposedly the tallest buildings in the world).
We then spent 2 days and 1 night in Singapore, where we stayed at "The Inn Crowd" which is meant to be the ultimate backpackers hostel. I'm not sure about that but it was quite good, we had a TV and DVD player in our room and a bunk bed where the top bunk was a double. We looked around the many shopping centres but decided against buying any cheap electronics because it wasn't worth the hassle of avoiding being ripped off, too much effort! We also saw Singapore Cricket Club but as it was tipping it down there were no games on. We had a delay at the airport by a couple of hours, Singapore airport is meant to be the best in the world with cinemas, bowling, etc. We seemed to be in the wrong part to experience all that but it was better than being stuck in some of the places we've been to.
We arrived in Bali at 2:30am and got a taxi to our hotel which was OK, big bed and TV, though it stank of smoke for some reason. We had 2 days booked there and moved to a cheaper (but still good) place, we have a little swimming pool, aircon and a bathtub.
Bali is nice, it's incredibly hot, probably the hottest place we've been to. This is meant to be the rainy season but it hasn't looked like raining once yet. You get hassled a lot walking down the street, every 10 seconds you hear "You wan't Billabong T-shirt", "How much you pay for those Oakleys, I'll give you cheaper" (I hope they would be cheaper than my genuine Oakleys which cost 90 pounds!).
We met up with Sophie's parents last night who are holidaying here for a week or so and went for a lovely meal over near their beach and they are coming to our bit tonight.
The last two days we have been having surfing lessons which was a lot of fun. I managed to pick it up quite quickly and can now stand up and steer my way into the beach most times. Hopefully we'll do some more surfing in Australia, sadly there's not that many places to do it in Malvern.
Keep the comments coming.