This summer started out with my arrival home and leaving for the emergency room the next day. I could hardly swallow and every time I did it felt like a razor blade in my throat. Turns out I had mono during all of finals week and didn’t realize it. So that was exciting news because I was leaving for Australia in a week!
I packed all of the essentials in a tiny 40 liter backpack which I would be living out of for the next two weeks. Fast forward to the airport – I almost didn’t get on the plane. Apparently I needed to fill out an ETA and have it accepted by the US and Australian government before I could get my boarding pass. Luckily everything worked it and I was able to board the plane. The travel time was 22 hours on the plane and 28 hours total with all of the layovers. Honestly it was a lot easier to do than I originally thought. One of the best feelings was getting off the plane knowing I got to see my brother after four months of being all the way across the world from each other. After meeting up with everyone, we headed to our first hostile in Melbourne. The way I like to describe this city is a clean New York City with palm trees. Also, you could walk down an alleyway at night and find a cute cafe with string lights rather than a dumpster and crusty rats.
We spent three days in Melbourne then rented a car and headed down the Great Ocean Road. We spent three days traveling on the road stopping at amazing places on the way. The first place we stopped at was actually a surprise. We took a random dirt road called beach forest because we thought it might be cool (we also wanted to see some kangaroos-which we did). There was a sign for a waterfall so we hiked down to the spot and it ended up being in a rainforest type setting and it was absolutely stunning. Another place we stopped on the great ocean road was the 12 Apostles which was breathtaking to see in real life.
Eventually after taking breaks at beaches and cute shops we arrived in Adelaide where we spent a day just recollecting for our next flight to Sydney. Sadly, there is no P. Sherman 42 Wallaby Way Sydney (otherwise we totally would have went). While we were in Sydney, the Vivid Light Festival was going on. This festival was so much more than we had originally thought. The entire harbor was lit up with vibrant colors.
After spending two days in that fabulous city, my brother and I split from our traveling friends and flew to Cairns. This is where we snorkeled and dove at the Great Barrier Reef. This was probably the highlight of my trip. Videos and pictures don’t do the reef or any of the animals justice. While we were on the boat on our way back to land, we saw close to 30 whales traveling together and jumping out of the water which was also so amazing. The last thing we did in Cairns was go to see some koala bears. Those animals are probably the cutest little guys on earth. Our last stop in Australia was Brisbane where we met up with my cousin and our traveling buddies again.
My visit Australia was probably the best decision I’ve ever made. The fact that we had absolutely no plans scared me at first, but it was actually the best plan. It opened my eyes to a whole new world and gave me so much confidence to do things on my own. I realized that I can live off of two shirts and a pair of shorts. I also realized that Emma Lannon isn’t crazy for flying to Denmark over Thanksgiving break. It’s worth it.
When I got home I jumped right into my job at the F.X. Matt Brewing Company. I give tours of the brewery and also work events such as Saranac Thursdays and concerts. I absolutely love my job and everyone I work with. Other than working, I work out and play beach volleyball with my dad and brother at a sports bar near our house every Tuesday which has been extremely fun. I also love to go up to my best friend Grace’s camp in Boonville and float on the lake all day.
On Fourth of July weekend, some crazy opportunity came up where I was offered a ride to Long Island. So obviously I took it to go see Kaci, Tricia and Courtney! Our friend Kristen drove us down to Kaci’s on Saturday. We spent the entire day on her boat which was honestly so fun and relaxing. The next day we went to the beach and actually found a beach court! Kaci, Trish, Court and I took on some family and had a ton of fun. The last day we spent in Montauk shopping and walking around the beach. It was an amazing weekend that I’ll remember forever.
Another little adventure I had this summer was to the Justin Bieber concert in Buffalo. I went with one of my really good friends on July 12th. Little did I know that Emily Ast was at the same concert! I met up with her and had a cute little reunion with my future suite mate.
My summer won’t be complete until I go on vacation to Poland. This will be my first time over in Poland and all of Europe! I’ll be staying there for two weeks and traveling with family. My brother, my cousins and I will be meeting up with my parents and other cousins after a few days of being there. I am extremely excited to see the country and to use some terms my Babci has taught me.
Overall, I have definitely had the time of my life this summer. I am forever grateful for every opportunity that has popped up this past year. I’ve been itching to get back in the gym and see the team. I’ll see you all in three weeks!