I don’t know where to begin.
We have been here for almost 3 years – time flies so quickly! – and yet, as usual, we haven’t done anything.
This year I’ve traveled to Spain, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, UK, UAE, Belgium, and Germany, yet domestically I’ve only been to one place: Sydney. I’ve had a rather long list of places I’d like to visit in Australia, and after 3 years the list is still the same.
It’s embarrassing that I even haven’t been outside Perth much except Margaret River and its surrounding. I haven’t been to Pinnacle, Exmouth, or Kimberley. I haven’t been on a boat trip to see whales. No, basically, I haven’t done anything for the past 3 years.
Why am I so reluctant to explore my own backyard?
Well, living in the most isolated city in the world doesn’t really help. Perth is bloody far from everywhere! It takes around 4 to 5 hours to fly to Sydney, Melbourne, or Brisbane (East), and with additional 3 hours time difference, it takes a whole day just to fly there. It takes 3 hours to Adelaide (South) and almost 3 hours to Alice Springs (North), and with one hour time difference, a half day is gone just for traveling.
But, apart from the distance and the time difference, I’m subconsciously afraid that I wouldn’t get as much surprise as I would get if I travel abroad. I’m afraid that I wouldn’t experience the awesome “wow” moments that will stop me in my track when I am walking down the streets of a city. I wouldn’t be surrounded by a foreign language that I don’t understand which forces me to communicate only through expressions and gestures. I’m afraid that I wouldn’t experience eye-opening exchanges with people about how we do things differently.
And I think the fact that Australia is rather a new world makes me feeling that it is less interesting than other continents which are so vastly rich in cultures and languages we don’t know where the myth stops and the history begins. And when I say new, I really mean it. For example, the oldest winery in Western Australia is Vasse Felix, where in 1967 Dr Tom Cullity planted the first vines to found Margaret River’s first vineyard and winery. 1967 is only 45 years a go! How can we compare to the wineries in Bordeaux region, where the vine was introduced by the Romans probably in the mid-1st century and wine production has been continuous in the region since then?
Am I wrong?
Of course I am! Although traveling from Perth to Sydney can be compared to traveling from Surabaya to Jakarta (which means, there is no “wow” moments apart from what a big city can offer: good shops, good vibes, good restaurants, well-dressed, beautiful people, some tourist spots, but that is all), each destination, domestically or internationally is always unique and offers an opportunity to experience something new.
No matter where we live, when we travel, even if it’s just a few hours from home, we will arrive at sights that are different from what we see every day. No matter where we travel, there is always something wonderfully new to be found.
Never lose your sense of wonder, that would be my mantra.
So right now I’m looking at Australia map and planning to visit some places in Australia that I’ve never been. Hopefully by end of next year I get to tick the boxes of the list I’ve been holding for 3 years.