Life Update On Travelling Solo To Australia
Well, January has absolutely flown by!
Apologies for being rather quiet and please bear with me as this post is going to be somewhat of an amalgamation of several posts I have been intending to write over the past few weeks but, as you will see, time has continued to escape me.
Having ended 2019 on the high of launching this blog my mind was filled with so many words and ideas… but I didn’t have time to put it all onto paper before the biggest adventure of my life came knocking.
The first couple of weeks in January my mind was very much elsewhere as I was working to put one of my biggest dreams into action. After the year 2019 turned out to be, “feel the fear and do it anyway” was a motto I intended to carry with me – and it’s safe to say that so far I have been well and truly running with it …
… as of today, I have been in Australia for 25 days and am absolutely loving every moment!!
Anyone who knows me will know just how long I have dreamed of travelling to the other side of the world. For the past few years I have been fascinated by anything and everything Australia related and a series of well-timed TV documentaries and social media posts seemed to give me the sign that now is my time to explore this beautiful country.
Though this adventure has come with a slight twist. Being so close to my family we normally explore the world together but this journey is one I have taken alone. It is my first time travelling solo(!) and me being me, naturally, I chose the other side of the world to do it.
Although I am not scared of flying itself, this journey posed other challenges but I’m a firm believer that anything worth having in life doesn’t come easy.
Walking away from my family to head through security alone was hard and I may have shed a tear or two knowing that I wasn’t going to see them for a couple of months; but I felt empowered and a huge sense of pride knowing I had the courage to go through with this solo adventure.
I spent the plane journey watching films, catching up on as much sleep as I could and making awkward small talk with the people sat next to me. I remember going through phases of feeling very overwhelmed and not quite able to believe what I was doing.
Navigating the airports themselves was my biggest worry, especially when I got to my layover in Dubai trying to find my way through a completely unknown airport in a foreign country in a limited time frame. I was right to be concerned… my flight from Stansted was delayed by 30 minutes and when we arrived in Dubai the airport was so busy we were unable to land. The delay coupled with flying around in circles for an extra 10 minutes meant the time I had to get to my next gate was already eaten into, and was further not helped by the mile-long queue at security (that and, despite following the correct signs, I walked to the opposite end of the airport from where I needed to actually be resulting in me running like a headless chicken to my gate. Go figure.)
I generally find the hustle and bustle of airports to be quite stressful, even with family and friends. Also considering the panic attack I had at the airport on my previous journey last summer, I was initially quite worried as to how I would find this one.
However, my distinct lack of nerves, anxiousness or stress (despite everything that happened at Dubai airport), reinforced my feelings of knowing that I was always meant to have this adventure.
And so, I write this post after what has now been my fifth flight of the year, returning to Sydney from Melbourne after quite possibly the dodgiest take-off I have ever experienced.
Looking back on the past few weeks have made me realise just how busy I have been. In just under three weeks I travelled to and explored four different Australian states: Western Australia, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory and Victoria. It definitely took a few days for it to sink in that I am actually here and it has since been so important for me on my travels to live in the moment and make the most of the time I have in each of the places I have visited so far.
I am so excited for all of the adventures still to come in the rest of my time on cloud nine on the other side of the world.
Head over to my Instagram @emmarosecollingridge to check out my adventures from the past 3 weeks and to keep up to date with what I get up to next!