Week 8: Hinterland

Oh, hello again!

I’m just here, sitting on my porch, looking out onto a gorgeous view, listening to the night song of crickets and birds. It’s not a big deal, but in case you are wondering, I may move here. I notice my mind figuring out the details as I pull weeds (for 5 hours a day!!!). I could apply for my one year travel visa, move out here and do farm work, buy a car after a couple months, drive into town and extern at a mental health clinic to continue getting  hours. This could work! Don’t freak out mom, I’m not going to actually do this (…but maybe…).

On the ride to the farm and the first 10 minutes here, I thought, “Hmm, this could be interesting.” And by “interesting” I mean, either fine or awful. But suddenly, it was dusk which turned to twilight, and everything around me was so beautiful I couldn’t shut up  about it. There are so many stars and trees and birds…and snakes. Yikes! I’m used to snakes, I’ve lived my whole life watching where I step, but pythons are whole different experience. When Owen (the calm, kind, mountain man who supervises us) came and asked if we wanted to see a snake (in about the same tone as one would invite someone else to look at a pile of dirt) I thought, “Sure, I haven’t seen a snake in Australia yet.”  We followed him to the garden and then boom! There she was in all her ginormous glory. I gasped, scrambled for my camera, and started filming *watch the video*. Owen calmly picked her up by the tail and walked her out to the trees, with me following behind in amazement. He said it was a small one. I don’t care, I think he deserves a round of applause.

In the spirit of talking about things that crawl and slither, I must mention the cockroaches. Last night was the first night that I have been kept awake by the creatures that may be crawling into bed with me. In general, I don’t love bugs. I don’t want them to touch me or be in my house or in my stuff. This is Australia though, and I have been on farms and rainforests nearly the whole time. Bugs (large and small) are everywhere, and I don’t get paranoid about where they might be when I close my eyes. Last night was different. I could hear them scratching and crawling less than two feet from my head. They were walking on the ceiling above my face and next to my bed. As soon as you get rid of one, two more come. It was the worst. I ended up putting on my head phones, pretending that it was just me and the friendly spider who lives by my bed trying to fall asleep.

In other news, Judit and I have come up with a list of activities and hobbies to occupy our time while we’re here. We have a daily photoshoot (our enthusiasm lessens each day), practice learning French, and take walks, among other things. We created this list within the first half hour of being here, so, that should tell you something. In the midst of all the bugs and boredom, it has been really lovely being here. I feel like myself in a way I haven’t since moving to Seattle. I can feel my internal pace slow down, and my mind ponder things I haven’t had space for. I love putting my hands in the soil while looking out at the pasture of cows. I get to sit on this porch and watch thunder storms roll in while the birds dart to safety. It feels calm and peaceful and lovely. I’m so grateful.

Here’s to another week!