Time has been flying here. The lack of phone usage is extremely refreshing. We spent our time in the outback under the millions of stars. I’ve never seen anything like it. As I sat by the fire I looked up thinking how tiny I was and how meager my problems. Next stop: The Daintree Rainforest. Once we arrived, I plopped my luggage down in this little hut by the ocean. There was a huge spider in the corner which for the first time I wasn’t scared of, nor did I look for a shoe to throw at it. Later that day, we went on a night walk through the rainforest with our head lamps on, as two little sparkly eyes would pop up every so often behind a tree. We ended our walk with the tour guide pointing to the Peppermint Stick Bug, which I can attest myself tasted like a candy cane. I guess you can say I’ve become one with nature.
I woke up the next morning at 6am for sunrise. Listening to music, I put my toes in the water (couldn’t go much deeper…crocs). It was another one of those moments where I felt in control of time—stopping, breathing, looking, and taking it all in. I was overcome with a wave of gratitude and contentment as I peered out into the crystal ocean. In the afternoon, I went horseback riding on the beach and fell in love with my pony named Leo.
I got to spend my 20th birthday in a wildlife conservatory, taking selfies with kangaroos and wallabies. However, I wouldn’t say I had the most wild birthday night. It had been a long three weeks by that point, and after watching some CSI, I said goodnight to my friends by 9pm.
The next day we snorkeled the Great Barrier Reef. I swallowed a gallon of salt water and my lips turned blue but it was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen—a whole new world I knew nothing about, and have yet to discover. A world no where near me but that gets affected by my actions and daily activities. Really makes ya think.. what can I keep doing ? What can I do better? How do I reduce my carbon footprint enough for these wondrous creatures to continue to live and thrive?
One of my absolute favorite nights was later that day: our entire group went into town to this recreation center and sat in a circle and had a “jam sesh.” Some of the more musically-gifted people in the group whipped out some guitars and played live music. After about an hour and some Jason Mraz songs, one of the locals who had joined us brought in a green bag. What was in it? Just a couple humongous pythons. Could’ve guessed that one. We continued singing as we passed around these snakes. I felt like I was becoming a real local as one of the pythons wrapped around my neck while a cockroach crawled right up my leg.
Well I’m sitting here, with some extremely amazing people who I’ve to become so close with so fast. Who I don’t wanna say goodbye to in two weeks. Who make me forget cell phones even exist, and that the present is all that matters..as is to embrace time. And I can’t help but feel incredibly grateful. I never want it to end.