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The Travelling Adventures of Mr Kingwell

Well the time has finally come and I am leaving small town Saskatchewan to see the world. I hope everyone enjoys my diary entries and photos and I look forward to receiving messages from everyone. Until next time, stay fit and have fun!!

Diary Entries

Monday, 23 April 2007

Location: Sydney, Australia

The night I wrote my last post, we were all kinda tired and lazy so we decided to drive downtown to catch a movie so we could have an early night. We ended up watched Shooter with Mark Wahlberg which was a really good movie. About a guy who gets set up for an assasination attempt on the President and has to fight his way to stay alive because the conspirators are out to kill him. Anyways, good movie. We got back to Daisy to drive back to the hostel and the car has decided that it won't allow the key to turn anymore. We tried and tried for an hour and then finally I managed to force it to turn and we got it started and quickly drove it back to the hostel. The only problem now was it wouldn't shut off. Again we tried and ended up forcing it the key to turn back and shut off. The day before we had just hung signs saying selling it for $750 too. So I think we decided to just leave it on the street for the city to take care off once we're gone. Its sad but I think if we fixed it and ended up not selling it we would be worse off. Oh well...

After my last posting, me and Brent took a one day trip out to the Great Barrier Reef. We loaded up at 8:15 in the morning onto a boat called the Sun-Kist and there was about 30 of us plus about 7 crew. It was kinda windy so we didn't go as fast as we could but we still went about 30 kms out of Cairns into the outer Great Barrier Reef. We moored at a spot, got a quick talking to, then we geared up to go scuba diving. Me and Brent and two others were in the first group and before you go down they make you do a couple skills. The first is getting water out of your mask while your underwater. The second is finding your mouthpiece in case it falls out. Once we all proved we could do these we were off. It was really cool cuz we were on a spot of the reef where it just kind of dropped off into the deep blue nothing, so we got to see the edge of the reef and a bunch of colourful coral and fishes. Even seen a huge turtle swimming around with us. This dive lasted about 15 minutes and then they took us back where we went snorkeling for another 20 minutes while the second group was in the water. After this they feed us a meat tray, chicken, and some salads while we went to a different spot to do our second dive. At this spot me and Brent got put with a different guy because not everyone from our first dive group decided to go for a second. Anyways, before we got in the water, the first group came in and said they had seen a shark swimming in the water. This was both exciting and frightening. I knew most likely it would be a reef shark because that is what they told us they had seen in the spot the day before and reef sharks are pretty much harmless but they can attack too. I did want to see a shark in the water but when we went down we didn't see any. Seen some more reef and some different fish but this dive was better because we got to stay down for a half hour this time. Overall this trip cost us $150 AUD but it was well worth it to me. It was ten times better than the dive in the Whitsundays. Mostly because of better things to see but also we stayed down longer and went deeper (up to 8.5 meters). We were kinda tired when we got back but it was gonna be my last night with all of us together so we figured we were obligated to go out and celebrate our time together with a banger. Waking up the next day, I would say we accomplished this and more..hahaha!! We went to a place called Gilligans which is a huge club downtown Cairns, met up with a guy we met earlier there and had an unreal night. Tons of fun!!

The next day I had to get up kind of early because I had to check out at 10 but the other two were still in the room so I just checked out and then went back up to the room for a while longer. I had to pack up our stuff and make sure I had everything I needed. I got ready, said my goodbyes, and took a cab to the airport where I had to catch a 2:15 flight from Cairns directly to Sydney. It was really amazing to see the view over the coast and Great Barrier Reef for a little once we took off but then we went back inland for the remainder. Got to Sydney and paid $12 for an airport shuttle to a hostel in downtown Sydney called Wake Up! It is a really nice hostel and has been voted best hostel in the world two years ago I think. I did a little walking around the area when I get settled in, watched a little tv, and went to bed pretty early that night. By this time I'm pretty much out of money, got a little left but one good night out and I'm pretty sure it would be gone so I doubt I'll enjoy much of the nightlife in Sydney but its probably not that much different from what I've seen in Melbourne and Cairns. So anyways, the second day in Sydney, I didn't know anyone, so I took off on my own to go explore the place. I walked a couple blocks from where my hostel is and found a market that sold all sorts of things. Mostly Chinese merchants selling anything from wigs to fruits to clothing. I found one booth that was selling cheap Australian souveniers so I bought a half size digeridoo for $25. I thought this was pretty good and I have wanted a digeridoo since I got here. Also bought a Von Dutch shirt from a vender for $8. Took these back to the hostel and then continued my touring. Walked about half an hour and then I was at the Rocks, which is an area between the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Both easily viewed from this spot. Snapped some pics off for me and the boys, haha, and then kept walking around. Found another market with a bunch of merchants that I toured through and I eventually made my way to the entrance to the Harbour Bridge walking path. Could get a pretty good view from up there so I took some pictures of the Opera House and surrondings, and also the downtown Sydney skyline. I had the option of paying $10 to walk up a lookout built into a pillar of the bridge but I had a good enough view from where I was. I could have also paid like $120 and climbed all the way to the top arch of the bridge but it wouldn't have been worth it for me. Maybe if I was rich but at this point I'm far from that!! Got back from this big day around six and just ate and relaxed for the rest of the day.

Woke up today and planned on first going to the Sydney Center Tower for a view of the city, Blue Mountains, and coastline but it was cloudy and rainy so I scraped that idea. I met my roommate from Germany and had talked to him a few times and he was kind of in the same boat as me. Just in Sydney for a few days and wanting to see the sights so we both got ready and headed out to go to the Sydney aquarium and a huge Chinese Gardens. First we went to the Chinese Gardens which was pretty cool actually. Just really serene atmosphere to it, very peaceful. From here walked about 5 minutes to get to the Sydney Aquarium. It is all in the same area called Darling Harbour which is only a 10 - 15 minute walk from our hostel. The aquarium was pretty cool but doing the scuba diving I had seen lots of the fish already. Did get to see a bunch of different sharks and some huge stingrays though. That was cool. No live Great Whites or Tiger Sharks though. Just the non-threatening ones. Tomorrow is my last full day in Sydney so I hope the weather is good and I'll go check out the Tower tomorrow, or else I don't know what I'm gonna do with myself all day...hahaha. Fly out of Sydney on Wednesday April 25th at 8:05 am so I'm gonna cheap out and not stay in a hostel again but catch a shuttle bus back to the airport tomorrow night at 7 pm and then just kill time in the airport til I have to check in for my flight at 5 am. I had an unreal trip but I'm ready to get back home. Tired of living out of a backpack and sleeping in bunk beds!! hahaha. Hope everyone is good and I'll see everyone when I get home.


Thursday, 19 April 2007

Location: Cairns, Australia

Hard to believe in another week I'll be home. Its been a blast though. Well worth it!! After leaving Rainbow Beach we drove pretty late into the night trying to get as close to Airlie Beach as we could so we ended up sleeping in our car a couple hours away from Airlie. Got checked into our hostel the next day and then just walked around town and went and checked out the harbour. Really nice hostel called Magnums where we stayed. Big open area with pool tables and tvs and benches set up so we had to take advantage of that by having a few drinks that night. The next day we woke up and went and bought everything we needed for our sailing adventure. This consisted of an underwater camera and lots of booze...hahaha. Got onto our boat called the T3 at about 3 o'clock and then took off for the open waters. Our dive instructor went over introductions and some safety things and told us "welcome to the cheapest boat in the Whitsundays". Haha. I guess thats what you get when you go cheap. It was a bad boat though. There was 22 of us in all plus 4 crew. Had bunks in it so could get a comfortable sleep but it was so hot and humid down there at night it was hard to sleep at times. Unfortunately when we were out at sea the wind was pretty strong and it was making some pretty big waves so it was slow going and it stopped us from going to Whitehaven Beach which is supposed to be amazing. Oh well, I've seen enough beaches since I've been here...haha. They took us to a spot called Cave's Cove and this is where we anchored for a few hours while we got a scuba lesson and did some snorkeling. If your not certified you are only allowed to do introductory dives which are supposed to be up to 9 m underwater. Ours were supposed to be introductory dives but we only went about 4-5 metres under the water. It was good though. Seen some coral reef and a bunch of fish. Took a ton of pictures while we were snorkeling and scuba diving with the underwater camera but haven't got it developed yet to know if it worked. Hopefully. From this spot we sailed for a little longer and anchored again to go snorkeling. As soon as we anchored the captain took some bread and was throwing it into the water for the fish and there was one fish who would eat it that was absolutely huge. Kinda creepy looking and didn't really want to dive into the water with it but went in anyways. The reef was way nicer here and there was a bunch more fish to see. We could swim right in with school of fishes. It was really cool. The crew did all the cooking and washing and everything for us so we were living the life. Both nights after supper was finished and it was getting dark we would anchor in a calm spot for the night. This is when the drinking started. haha. Me and Brett were drinking goon (cheap boxes of wine), which has been our lifeblood for the last month...hahaha. It was good times but not many people on our boat really liked to party. It was supposed to be a party boat but only about 8 of us or so actually stayed up partying. We still had fun though. Woke up the next morning where we could go snorkeling but I passed that up. Instead we climbed on the roof of the boat and did jumps off of it. Met these two really cool Kiwis that we hung out with lots on the boat and they were all jumping off and having a good time. That day we got off the boat at about 2 and then we had to get checked back into our hostel. Everyone from the boat was supposed to go to this place for cheap food and drinks at 7 that night but when the three of us went there at 8 there was absolutely no one in this place and the kitchen was closed so we drove back to our hostel where we thought we might eat and have a few drinks. We ate but when it came time to drink we were all so tired we just laid in our beds and crashed for the night. The next day before we left Airlie Beach we went to check out this shark museum. Apparently it was set up by Vic Hislop who for all his life has hunted sharks. He even has a huge 2 and a half tonne shark perserved in a freezer to see. It was pretty cool but got kinda repetitive. Its amazing how much stuff he finds in shark stomachs though. Finds dolphin bones, turtles, human bones. Pretty crazy.

Took off from Airlie and headed up to Mission Beach that same day and got checked into our hostel called Scottys Beach House. It was a pretty cool place, really laid back approach to things. Mission Beach isn't exactly a huge place so not much happening at nights. We all decided we didn't want to be hungover for sky diving so we crashed pretty early that night. The next morning I woke up at 6 o'clock and my heart started to race just thinking about sky diving that afternoon. Couldn't fall back asleep I was so anxious. Killed time until 1 when the sky dive company was supposed to pick us up but they didn't show up until 2:15. Still don't know why. Anyways, got out to the sky dive place and got registered. We got put into a group with one other girl and we were the last group to jump. By the time it got around to us it was 5:30 and last light was at 6:15 so we got into our gear and jumped on the plane. The pilot didn't know if they could get us up to 14000 ft and I'm not sure if we did but we were at least 12000 ft so it was still pretty high up there. I was strapped to an older guy named Pierre and we were second to jump. This German girl with us jumped first and thats kinda when it hit me that I'm about to jump out of a plane. It was kinda freaky seeing this girl just get like sucked out of the plane. Thats another thing, the plane had no door so the flight up was kinda freaky too. Anyways, seeing this girl get sucked up I was thinking what am I about to do?? I shelved those thoughts and stepped up though. Got my knees over the edge and then Pierre gave it the "ready, set, exit!!" and we were out. I remembered what he told me before we jumped about positioning and everything so I was a pro...hahaha. Right out of the plane did about 3 or 4 flips, which was both freaky and amazing at the same time, then we got leveled out and it was the spreadeagled freefall for 60 seconds after that. My fears were instantly gone and I was just loving the sensation of freefalling. My adrenalin was just pumping and it was unreal. The chute got pulled at about 3000 ft and then he got me to kind of pull myself up and he adjusts the straps to make it like your sitting in a chair. Then he pulls the control cords and he makes us do like swirls in the air. It was really cool too. The view when your diving is unreal. Get to see endless sea and endless coastline. Then to end it off we got to land right on the beach. Lift your legs up as high as they go and then let Pierre skid us to a stop. Perfect landing and perfect jump. No words can describe it really. Just unreal!! Probably the best thing I've done down here. Don't know what can top it!! The adrenalin was still pumping for a few hours after we finished so I was pretty wired up. Had some drinks in the hostel bar and then just went back to the hostel area and had some beers while swimming in the pool with another couple of people from our room. It was all good.

Took off from Mission Beach to Cairns the next day. Thats where we're at now. Stay here for another two nights and then fly to Sydney for a few days, then fly home. Haven't done too much in Cairns yet. Last night we went to a bar called the Woolshed which was really cool. Met up with a couple of people who we met in Mission Beach. Tomorrow me and Brent have booked a trip to go out to the reef and go scuba and snorkel some more. They have a speed boat that takes us 66 kms out to the reef and they feed us dinner and let us scuba for an hour and snorkel for the rest. Should be good. The person who booked for us said it was absolutely amazing out there. Gonna be a nice day so pretty excited for that. But thats all thats new from me. Probably get one more of these from Sydney and then you can just talk to me when I get back home...hahaha.


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Recent Messages

The sky diving sounds awsome kinger. i think i would chicken out at the door but regret it later. Have a safe trip home will have to do some catching up when you get back.
Response: yeah it was amazing. for sure catch up sometime!!
From Brent
almost over Kinger, good times
From Meaghan
Hey Mullet Man,
Thought I'd check out the site when I had a spare moment. The trip looks amazing and it looks like your having the time of your life! Wish I was there....Happy Easter from the C family! Best wishes and take care.

Response: haha. yeah its going awesome. tons of fun and the next month is only gonna get better. Happy Easter to you guys too!!
From porksie
Happy Birthday's a little late but better than never right?? Sounds like the trip is going awesome, but haven't heard many girl stories, what is up with that??
Gonna miss you at the Rosebowl this year pal, and I can't guarantee anything but we will try and win atleast one game for you!! Take care,
Response: thanks for the birthday wish. good luck at rosebowl, you'll have to drink my share for me too!!
From Naz
Hey kingy, have a good trip down there, sure hope that chute opens for your sky-dive. Sucks your gonna miss watching me sid porko and wagz lift the rosebowl up this year and maybe even cut a victory lap.
Response: hahaha. Don't think it will happen without me there to hold down the 3rd position. but good luck. wish I was at it.
From Linda
HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY. I thought of you on the 2nd. I always remember your birthday because you were born on Mom and Dad's Anniversary. I'm glad you guys are having so much fun. We miss you all and can't wait to see you all again. That will probably only last a week or so and I'll wish you were all back over there!! Seriously, keeping having a good time, do what you want to (you'll probably never get over there again) - it's only money and stay safe.
Response: hahah. thanks linda. we miss back home but we're having too much fun to worry about that right now.
From Elaine Harding
Sounds pretty good to me Jeff. Hope you trip goes well.

Good luck.
Response: the trip is going good but gonna be broke before I know it. good thing I can rely on income tax return.
From Matt
Hey Buddy, Just checking out your wesite. Nice..I like the Mullet. My dad thinks its Hip. alright, Have a good one! Matt
Response: thanks buddy. things are pretty good down here. really laid back which is fine with me.
From leam
jeff this really something to follow your travel half way around the world .happy birtday as you are aday or so ahead . leam
Response: thanks for the birthday wish. I wish I could update this site more often. mom is always telling me too. haha
From Steve
Hey Kingy, looks like you 3 yahoos are having fun. Im sure that lazy koala that sleeps all day reminded you of the days living with Sid. Enjoy the rest of your trip. Heres hoping the only things you catch down there are some waves and sun rays
Response: hahaha. thanks stove. cheers to that!!
From Trish & Hunch
Glad to hear the adventures from down under. The cheque is in the mail, so I guess you guys will be moving on soon. Keep those updates coming ! We saw some of the cool pics of the zoo.

Keep having fun!
Response: definately having fun still and looking forward to doing some more touring.
From Mom
Hey Jeff. I'm still waiting for the pics- want to see your new do!
Hard to imagine a mullet when you left only 21/2 months ago with a shaved head! Glad to hear you are getting some touring in. Keep the updates coming. Sounds like you've become quite a connoisseur of beer! Stay safe and healthy!
From Delow
Hey kinger well we did it were in the finals. so that means that if we win the next 4 i will be sporting the mohawk again. but we have to win first. good to hear from ya talk to later.
Response: nice. the hawk will be back!!
From Taco
What is up dog? Long time no here. Don't be afraid to call someday. I'll try to quit screening your calls. Take Care of yourself.

Response: I see your grammar went to shit since I've last talked to you. Its hear, not here. haha. Yeah I'll give you a ring sometime and fill you in, not gonna get my hopes up that your gonna answer though.
From Kendra
Kinger! This is the coolest little space! I love reading your stories- sounds like you guys are having an amazing time! Keep us all updated! I miss ya- last weekend I was in town and had to walk home from the bar without of the saddest moments of my life!
Response: hahaha yeah that would have been heart breaking. I promise to never let that happen again. I miss the motor inn a bit although we are having lots of fun down under. Haven't found a wife yet so good chance I'll be coming home. haha.
From beave
NICE KINGY NICE!!! sounds like ur doing a good job and havin alot of fun, but come on bud, i want to here about hookers and strippers , haha jj sorry any parents that read that. just email me those stories, haha, but keep up the good times, and say hi to great white shark and brett gray for me, thanks bud CHEERS DUDE AND A HALF
From Cortez
Why did you leave out the part where you chugged 2 schooners, two shots and then licked the bar mat to win the contest.

Glad to hear your eating healthy.

Response: hahaha. I would have included it it if happened.
From porks
Hi Buddy, Hope all is going well. Things are going good up here, actually even better than when you are here.hahaha just kidding. play safe.
Response: Yeah right, you guys all miss me.
Hey King Canada, love the pics and the messages dude or should I say mate. Cant wait to see you again, shouldnt be to long though haha. I hope Daisy holds up and everything goes good and you all find sweet jobs where you make lots of money.

Response: Pretty sure this is Brent.
From Linda
Keep up the good work. You tell us alot more than Brent does in his e-mail. Glad to hear from both of you though. Pictures are great. Keep them and the messages coming. I check every day. Glad to hear you are having such a good time. Remember none of you are allowed to meet any girls over there and decide to stay. If you do, they have to come here!!
Response: Hahaha. Sounds good Linda. Sorry I don't update more often.
From Wagz
Hey Kingy!! Miss ya buddy. Hope everything is well It looks and sounds like you are having a blast!!! Peace
Response: Maybe I'll meet you back at the wheat pool this summer buddy. Hahaha. Cheers.
From Delow
Hey Buddy sounds like your having a blast keep up the posts. You guys will look pretty cool driving the mystery machine. Any way take care there shaggy
Response: Hahaha. Should have called it the mystery machine. Oh well, next time.
From Daniel
haha nice car, at least the flowers go along great with your homosexual tendencies.
Response: ohhhhhh, burn. nice one dano. I'll save a noogie for you when I get home.
From the Gilchrist
We have been wondering how your adventure is going, glad to hear everything is going great. Say hi to Brent and Brett for us. Love the car. Good luck and take care. Allan, Donna and gang
Response: Thanks Gilchrists. If you really wanted us to have a good time you can send cheque or money order to:
Jeff Kingwell
Radest Dude Alive
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
WHOOPITY WHOOP WHOOP, i miss beating the shit out of u every weekend. come on, come back, u made me feel tough! hehehe