Awesome Travel Books

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So when I was in Russia I met a girl called Sherrie. She and her German are on an extended trip all over the place by motorcycle through Europe, Russia, South East Asia and now by “Shaggin Waggon” (I kid you not!) on the ultimate road trip in the US of A.

Sherrie is one of my personal heroes for the following reasons:

1. She calls herself a Newfoundland Gypsy Princess

2. She is a kindred spirit in that she and I both gave up on plans a while ago and now just kind of go with whatever feels best at the time

3. She adopted a dog in Thailand

4. She’s MOTORCYCLED ACROSS THE WORLD. You can read her story here

5. She’s funny, nice, clever and altogether fabulous

6. Also she’s a great writer. Between her and the German (his name’s actually Patrick) they have written 4 books. You can find out more about them here….

http://unleashyouradventure.com/sbw_ws/?xyz=&sbw_affiliate=INWA&sbw_author=UnleashYourAdventure&sbw_no_books=4&sbw_slide=true&sbw_vertical=false&sbw_link_text=More%20books

This will take you to a page where you can click through to Smashwords and find out more about the books. A link to Sherrie and Patrick’s site, where you can find out more info about Sherrie, Patrick and Mango and also more about their books is above

Now That’s What I Call a Commute

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Recently I became a bicycle commuter. If those who know me would kindly pick themselves off the floor…

When I first started I commuted along the main road, sharing with massive seeming lorries that made me feel very small, grumpy car drivers who seemed to think I was nothing but an annoyance and the so-called ‘lycra brigade’ equally as intimidating in their shiny outfits, whizzing past effortlessly while I puffed and wheezed my unfit way along the route.

Just recently however I was told about a different way to get from my house to work, one that has only the smallest amount of road and mainly follows one of Melbourne’s excellent network of cycle paths.

I leave my little house…

Turn right towards the sea…

Have about half a mile where I cycle along the seafront through a nature reserve…

Turn away from the sea and follow a creek, crossing a wooden bridge which rumbles beneath our wheels…

Here are a few of my fellow commuters…

After a day at work we get to do it all in reverse. I nearly fell off my bike the first time I saw this…

March 2012 – 12 by 12

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The final post of our highlights of one year of marriage.

So here we are one year on and what a year.  This month we moved to our temporary new home in Altona.  A busy day was spent with the hire car ferrying house stuff from IKEA and our existing gear from the hostel.  Wine and a Chinese takeaway were our reward.Kerry got into the flow of her  new job.  I launched my very own photography sales website with some of my favourite photographs from our travels (and a few before we set off).  I bid a sad farewell to my travel converse.  They served me well for a year.  Walking along the seafront in Altona was a nice way to reflect on one year of marriage and what we have seen and done in that time.  It was also great to imagine what the next year will hold.  What country will we be in for our second anniversary?

By Stefan Palmer

February 2012 – 12 by 12

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February turned out to be a pretty quiet month.  As Kerry and I neared our first wedding anniversary, we were busy looking for a semi permanent home to settle in Australia due to Kerry getting a job.  What a find we made with firstly Blyth Street and Altona in general.  The lease was signed and a moving in date of 9th March was set.  Then the plotting started.  What and where do we get furniture from on a miniscule budget?  In between the planning further exploration of Melbourne was made.  A walk in the Park in Carlton Gardens, more catching up with friends, packing our gear once more for the move to Altona and Kerry was getting into the swing of the whole work thing.

By Stefan Palmer

January 2012 – 12 by 12

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Further continuing the highlights of our first year of marriage

We finally finished our dive master courses. It felt like nothing happened for a long time then suddenly we were visiting the island for the last time.  A couple of days later we bid a sad farewell to Alana and chelsea and before we knew it were on the plane heading for Melbourne.  We had a few days in a very nice hotel then checked into the excellent space hotel where we became long term residents while I looked for work. It took about 3 weeks until I found a great job in my field.  In between job hunting we visited the botanical gardens, went to the tennis and met up with friends.

By Kerry Feely

December 2011 – 12 by 12

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This month we continued our Divemaster training with many weekend trips to Pelorus Island. Some were very challenging with the weather conditions (I have the scars to remind me). It was heading towards the height of the Australia summer (it was very hot). We spent a weird Christmas thousands of miles from home (and my first every away from home) watching the Aussies having their BBQ’s and sunbathing on the beach. Kerry and I had our heads in our diving books preparing for exams. New Year was spent at 800 metres above sea level in much cooler temperatures in a nature reserve called Mount Zero. We slept under the stars, drank lots of beer and wine and went looking for Australia wildlife, spotting geckos, green possums and loads of birds. It was a brilliant new year.

By Stefan Palmer.

Loving KL

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On our way to Australia we decided to have a week’s break in Kuala Lumpur. This was my second visit to the city, and the first time I didn’t enjoy it one bit. I suspect that this is because last time I went to Singapore first and loved it so much. Singapore is a beautiful, safe, super clean city and KL just isn’t in the same league when it comes to cleanliness and tidiness. In consequence all I could think last time was “KL isn’t as nice as Singapore…”

How things change! Maybe it’s coming back somewhere familiar for the first time on this trip, and in the 5 months we’ve been away, maybe my ick factor has completely disappeared and I’m not even slightly bothered about mystery “water” on the pavement any more, or maybe its because I haven’t been to Singapore first!

Anyway Stef and I had a blast there in the few days we were there. One day we went to the Kuala Gandah National Elephant Sanctuary, spent a lot of time walking around the city and went o  the bus tour

We have also visited the KL Tower (Petronus is shut for renovations) and got some amazing pics of the Petronus Twin Towers and the city.

We walked around loads and just enjoyed the city.

November 2011 – 12 by 12

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We started one of the biggest challenges of our lives… our dive master training. This is the first step to becoming a diving professional – actually earning money to do something we love. Our DM was tough. It was with a school that runs weekend camping and diving trips to a remote island on the edge of the GBR. There were very early mornings, very late nights, lots of carrying of cylinders and A.MAZE.ING diving! This month was not all about diving though, we also went out with our lovely housemate Alana to the wetlands to look for kangaroos and birds, walked Chelsea and got to know Townsville better.

By Kerry Feely

October 2011 – 12 by 12

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Continuing our damp Vietnam experience, Kerry and I spent my birthday in Saigon and had a great Mexican meal. We visited the scary tunnels where the Vietnamese took refuge during the war with the US. It was then our first plane trip of our adventure to Kuala Lumpar. What a great place that was, with the spectacular Protonus Towers and panoramic night time views from the KL Tower. It was in KL that we visited the Elephant sanctuary and had a brilliant day being entertained by those wise old animals. Finally during October we arrived in Australia for the next leg of our adventure…….

By Stefan Palmer

Petronus Tower 3Petronus Tower 2Monkey and coconut 3Monkeys 2
Lifeguard boardKerryStef and kerry
Kerry on ElephantTownsville marina 2Running
RayOur new home

September 2011 – 12 by 12

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Further continuing the highlights of our first year of marriage

In September we managed to visit three countries. The end of the first part of our tour found us in Hong Kong – an amazing city where East truly meets West in a fusion of English road signs, dumpling houses and mega malls. We spent the day on the beach a stone’s throw from the skyscrapers, and hardly slept for three nights. It was there we met our second tour group, and continued into Southern China where we were fortunate to be invited to a Chinese family’s house for their Autumn festival celebrations – a traditional meal including… chicken feet!!!

The tour continued into Vietnam where we trekked in Sapa, the mountainous north, all steep hills, thick mists and incredible views. Next stop was Ha Noi where the tour officially ended, but the group decided to visit Ha Long Bay where we found ourselves marooned on a deserted island called Cat Ba after a day of deep water soloing and sea kayaking. As has been a tradition on this trip the quietest places were the most fun and an afternoon of Cat Ba Games and Cat Ba Karaoke we fell asleep to the sound of the sea.

We said goodbye to our new friends on the mainland and Stef and I continued southwards through Vietnam. We visited the ancient capital Hue before heading on to pretty Hoi An , then managed to find an excellent dive school in Na Trang and finally finishing in Saigon. My overriding memory of Vietnam is the rain. From the second we bid farewell to our tour group until we finally made our escape it rained. Poured in fact. Every. Single. Day. But what a country!

By Kerry Feely

By Kerry Feely