12 hours later, on the morning of the 7th, I found myself waking up on the bus just as we were approaching this metropolis of Sydney. The buildings and skyscrapers were starting to ring some bells. Things were looking familiar and suddenly I didn’t want to go off the bus.. Oh no.. What was I going to do, and where was I going? Everyone was dropped at the central station. Including me. Oh no, why couldn’t the journey have taken another 12 hours? But there was no point in me thinking like this. I had made the choice to go to Sydney, now I had to get my ass into gear once again and ask myself what I wanted. Did I want to stay in Sydney? Did I want to leave? Did I want to book into a hostel? (By the smells of me.. yes I think I did..). But really I still wanted to stay on the road, and I wanted to avoid the hostel.. Especially in the heart of Sydney, where you find mainly the backpackers who party every night and are so in holiday-mode, its not even funny (listen to me.. you’d think I’d never partied before in my life.. haha).
So being at the station, I checked if there were any buses heading anywhere interesting, up the coast maybe. I went to the office asked the dude behind the counter if there were any trains heading to Brisbane..? Why? Well, I suddenly had a epiphany (the one I had been waiting for last night in Melbourne, now suddenly made itself known: a little late, but all the same it was still very much welcomed!). I thought about going to Brisbane, and visiting Trish, Ed and Wayne! Yes, that would be so good! Being in transition was something I was loving, but knew it would have to end. And what better to place to head towards other than a place where I knew I had peace and quiet, where there were no backpackers and where I could sort out my head and my life and process all that had happened the past 6 weeks? Was it the beautiful Sunshine Coast?
Well, this dude at the station, said there was a train at 4pm, and the tickets were 50% off!! Oh wouw..not only had a had an epiphany but now this was also a sign of what I had to do. He told me to make up my mind quickly. Okay, I said, I’ll be back in 10 minutes.. I walked away, and sat and was thinking for a minute. What to do? I hadn’t even asked Trish if it was okay for me to stay. And I couldn’t get hold of her either. Could I really be so cheeky and just presume I was allowed to stay? Or could I just book the ticket with an open-mind and feel okay with the uncertainty of maybe not being able to stay at her house but instead maybe staying at a hostel in the city of Brisbane? Yes, I thought. Yes, I’m totally fine with that. It will work out either way. I went back in to the ticket office. I asked if they still had the special offer to Brisbane. And they surely did. But for some reason, it was a little too soon to leave Sydney so I asked for the following day. And, what do you know, they had the same offer!! I was delighted! I had 36 hours in Sydney. This was great. It would give me a chance to catch-up with my cousins Shane and Darragh, who are living there now. Haven’t seen them in so long, so meeting them that afternoon, after I booked a bed in a hostel in Chinatown where I had 31 “roommates”(!!!), was a real bonus.
That afternoon I got a call (this was Thursday the 8th by the way) from my dear angle Janice, who I shared a house with in Cairns. And, once I heard what she had to say, I realized why I felt I needed to stay an extra day in Sydney. She was heading down to Sydney, from the Gold Coast, the following morning! She was arriving at the station at 7am on Friday. I was leaving Sydney at 4pm on Friday, so we would get the chance to hang our, for 7 whole hours!!! I was so excited. Couldn’t believe the coincidence. I hadn’t seen her in so long and neither of us had planned to be in Sydney so randomly. But somehow we were meeting! The rest of Thursday was the best. I didn’t do much, I hung out in Chinatown, I was writing my heart out and savoring the vibe and energy this fast-paced city was giving me. I was so happy to be there, and just as happy to be leaving too.. But only after having spent 7 precious hours with Janice the following day. And that’s what they were. They flew, went far too fast, but we both took so much from that meeting. It was simply the best!
I got the train at 4pm. I wasn’t too sad as Janice waved me off. I just knew how lucky I was to have met her that day. It was another bonus, on the whirlwind journey I was making.. As suddenly I found myself arriving in Sydney, I also found myself leaving again. A brief but brilliant encounter