It started with a wild idea. Some of my colleagues have encouraged me to make use of my Australian visa and take the opportunity to travel to the land down under. Of course I was a little hesitant. I am well aware of the potential expense that I will incur and perhaps it would be around the range of my 3 years of savings before I started with my current job. I guess I am just lucky to have been granted with a month of tourist visa to Australia last year. It was nearing expiration when I felt the itch and desire to probably use it this time more like a journey of many firsts for myself.
Like any other solo traveller, I started to flirt with the idea and made my own research. Airfare was a secondary issue next to accomodation, since budget airfares are already available going to Sydney. Without a doubt in my mind, Sydney would have to be my first taste of Australia. I know there are many places and things to see in Australia, but I think if I were to do an opening act it would have to start with the city that probably would cross my mind in an instant so that’s Sydney. So I did research on accomodation, until I posted in facebook about ‘things to do in Sydney’ and my childhood neighbourhood ‘ate’ and relative commented and sent me a message. Right away we jumped in to the conclusion that I should make it happen before the month would end and thank God she offered me to stay in their home. So right away I filed for leave then prayed for divine intervention that it would be granted ASAP. True enough after more than a week of waiting, I was told I can take a leave and fly to Australia! I scouted for cheap airfare on my own, tried to make my itinerary and then in less than a month I was finally set and ready to go!
By the time everything was set, planned and almost ready for full execution, I started to feel a little nervous about the whole trip. People would probably agree that I’ll be the last person to take a dare and take a risk, so It was a bit of a challenge. This trip would be my first trip solo outside of the country. I think it would be totally ok to go full asian invasion and travel solo but to go to a different continent ALONE was another story. I know most people would probably just say, just another first timer full of anxiety or excitement but a part of the reason why I was pushed to take on this adventure was my newly resurrected hobby which is blogging. I’m really the type who would probably make a grand story about everything I would go through and each step of the way I’d be thankful and add a bit of drama to every miracle and blessing I receive- why not?!
So I took an evening flight to Manila from Cebu, then for about 3 hours of waiting I was aboard in the plane that would take me to Sydney. I must say I tried to control over my nerves and I was really counting each minute in my 9-hour travel to a foreign soil. I’m not a fan of flying so to go through 9 hours of it was a proud moment. At around 10:30am-11:00am Sydney time, our plane finally landed at Sydney (Kingsford Smith) International Airport. I went through the immigration without any hassle and with a warm welcoming smile the immigration officer blurted out with a smile, ‘Welcome to Australia, mate!’ Just like that my newly turned itchy feet is walking in the very soil of the luckiest country in the world! I must say that like Australia, I was lucky enough to went through smoothly the necessary processes while travelling, and most of all I was right on schedule.
Immediately after arrival, we immediately went straight to Circular Quay to tick off the most important item in my bucket list- a picture of me with Sydney Opera House as my background. Because we got hungry, we ate lunch at Opera Bar with a perfect view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. I was feeling a bit Aussie so I ordered Fish & Chips. Thanks to my Ate for the welcome lunch and dessert at Guylian Belgian Chocolate Cafe (I should do a separate blog about food).
Right after the food fest, went around Circular Quay the to the Rocks and just smelled the fresh Australian air. Along the way I was amazed by the joggers. I was lucky enough to have witnessed the knock off hour for most locals and immigrants from their work and really there was literally a stampede of the most good looking people in the universe.
I was not about to just went home early, we walked around the entire CBD. Took pictures at Hyde Park, The Rocks, and St. Mary’s Cathedral.
There’s much to blog about but the first day was truly magical. (lol) I cannot think of a better word to describe how I felt. It was a big deal for someone like me and no matter how little the blessings are, I will always count it and make it a big deal and probably blog about it. This is just my first day of the Australian Adventure so I will be unapologetic about blogging about it more in the coming days. Blogging this and looking back to the events that transpired, brings a BIG SMILE to my stressed out self these days good thing I am able to have finally started this! 😛