Hi everyone. Just a short message to say that I'm not going to be doing my planet ranger anymore! I rarely get on the net more than once a week as I am working so much! I have decided to keep a personal diary and write a book when I get home haha! Its not very exciting as its just lots of work at the moment. I hope all is well with everyone at home. If you still wana keep in touch then my email address is email@example.com big hugs and kisses. xxx
Location: Alice Springs, Australia
I'm back!!!! woowoowoowoo! Its great to be back here in Alice!! Lovely to catch up with everyone I had to say goodbye to not so long ago! I moved into the staff accomodation yesterday at Melankas which was really cool. Living in a coridoor with some friends so its just like being back in halls at uni!! I got my old job back at the bar which is sweet! Only gona be working fridays and saturdays though as don't wana get ill like last time!! Am very excited as Mel was here to meet me when I came over and shes decided to stay!! Will be lots of fun. Right must go. Its my last day off before I start with my ladies tomorrow so need to get all my stuff sorted!! bye for now.xx
Location: Heathrow Airport!!, UK
Hello again! Its time for The adventure's of Laura the Explorer Take 2!!! I have had a lovely weekend with lots of 'see you laters' (not goodbyes!!) and just said a sad farewell to mum dad and emma. Thanks for having me home my family!! Miss you already and am looking forward to seeing you on the other side of the world soon!! Lots of love always.xxxx
Location: Laura's bedroom, Mundon, England
oh my gosh well there you go! Its all over! thank you very much for all the messages! Its been nice being in close contact with you all! I've had a fantastic time and can't wait to go away again soon! xxx
Location: San Francisco, USA
Surprisingly enough it was easier to upload photos in thailand than it is here in the US! So I'll have to wait until I get home now before the rest of my piccies go up. Not very long to wait! I had an awesome day today! Jumped on the tram down to Fisherman's Wharf and got my ferry across to Alcatraz. It only takes 10 mins on the boat. Did the audio tour which was really good and informative. Then I went into the shop and one of the ex inmates was there signing copies of his book! So I bought one! Looks interesting! Not sure I should be supporting an ex convict but I'm sure hes learnt his lesson!!!! Right time to make some food! SEE YOU ALL VERY SOON!!!xxx
Location: San Francisco, USA
Well the coach journey wasn't too bad luckily! I managed to sleep a lot! I arrived at about 7:30 this morning, dumped my bags in hostel and have been exploring the city. I got the monorail to pier 39 where I indulged in clam chowder (when in rome do as the romans do and all that!) was actually quite nice! Then I decided (idiotically!) to walk back via Lombard Street which is the most crooked street in the world apparently! I was very impressed that I didn't get lost but I didn't realise how hilly san fran is! I got such a work out! This afternoon I'm gona go and read my book for a bit and catch up on some sleep as I'm going to alcatraz tomorrow. All exciting stuff!
Location: Vegas, USA
Went to the pool again yesterday with the crew and again today. Last night was really fun. We all went out and randomly bumped into Laura and Danny again so there was a big crowd of us. We went to watch the show at Treasure Island which was good-it was in true vegas style-about ladyu sirens seducing the sailors...so lots of scantily clad women!
We actually ended up in a strip joint too haha! All the clubs shut about 3 and we were all up for staying out later so asked the taxi driver to take us somewhere good...! The men loved it! It was very interesting actually!
I went to the pool again today-there really is nothing else to do in this heat! Its so dry! Just wana jump in the water the whole time. Time to get the greyhound in a bit. A nice 14 hour drive to look forward to! Will have to say a sad goodbye to my lovely hostel crew. I can say this now because I'm leaving and so mum won't worry but...It was in such a rough area! I walked to the shop which is less than a minute away on my first day and this man in his car pulled up next to me and told me to get in the car!! I was really scared! Luckily I was really close to the shop so I just ran in! It was literally the middle of the afternoon! It was so good to meet the group of people I did cos I had company all the time after that!
It was a really nice hostel though and was situated opposite an Elvis themed wedding chapel (so typically vegas!!) so early evening we'd sit outside and watch all the couples come out in their costumes! Very entertaining! Lawrence asked me to marry him within half hour of meeting-just cos it was so convenient...think he really wants a british visa haha!
Its strange but in a way I don't want to go to San Francisco. Home is so close now! Emma is home already as she mixed up her bus and decided to just go home and I understand how she feels. As awesome as travelling is, after 7 and a half months, going to a new place for 2 days seems like a lot of effort! It is so exciting exploring a new place but tiring too. Every new place we've arrived at means finding accomodation, working out exactly where you are, making new friends and having the exact same conversation with them (about yours and their travels as you've had with every other person you've met), trying to establish the areas to avoid, discovering the easiest way to travel around the place and choosing which touristy things to do. These things are usually so exciting, but when home is so close my enthusiasm falters! I'm really not complaining but I think it really is time to go home and settle for a bit!
Location: sincity hostel, USA
Well...Last night turned out to be wicked! I decided to sign up for the limo tour of the strip which then included free entrance into Coyote Ugly which is inside the New York New York casino. Met a group of people who were drinking outside before we went which was cool. It was really good going down the strip in a limo! We got shouted at if we put out head out the sun roof though! How good would that have been?!
Today I went to the pool with Lawrence, (an aussie who I met on the limo tour) and 3 other guys from the hostel whose names I can't remember cos they're from Switzerland! Our hostel hasn't got a pool so we went to the Stratosphere Casino/hotel and sneaked in! Its got a really nice pool and volleyball net etc.
We had a really nice evening too. Lawrence, Joanne, Roger and Ken (the crazy Irish man!!) and me went into the strip for a sober night! We went to the top of the 'Eiffel tower' in the Paris Casino/hotel and sawthe city lit up for miles. Was really nice. Its weird becasue you don't really need to go anywhere specifically to be entertained here! Just walking up and down the strip is so fun! Theres so much to see!
Location: Sincity hostel, USA
Have had the best time in Vegas so far! Went out last night to a bar called Dicks in the Excalibur hotel. Its theme is a fairy tale castle-so cool! Has a wedding chapel inside as well! Met a really funny couple from manchester-Laura and Danny who just got married so had a few drinks with them, em, uncle david and our friend dean from Fiji. Then we hit the poker and roulette tables! Was very fun but I lose all my money rather quickly! I won the first hand I played at poker though so was fairly happy with that! Its such a different game cos you're playing against the dealer instead of the other people at the table and the dealer doesn't even know his own cards so its all about the odds rather than the style of play. David won about 100 on roulette which was good going!
I said goodbye to Emma again this morning as her and Dean are going to San Francisco and then LA. Went for breakfast with David Jane Lozzie and Tom before they too went to the airport. THANKS FOR AN AWESOME TIME YOU GUYS!! AND THANKS FOR SPOILING US ROTTEN!!
Just checked into hostel. Thought it was on the strip but its miles away from the main bit. Haven't really seen anyone around either. I'm going for a sleep!
I PLAYED POKER IN VEGAS BABY YEAH!
Location: LAS VEGAS!!!!!!!, USA
oh gosh I haven't written for ages! Ok so we spent one day in LA then jumped on the greyhound to meet up with uncle david auntie jane Loz and Tom on the west coast, California. They'd hired this humungous RV camper van that sleeps 7 peeps so we jumped in for the ride! After 3 days travelling down the coast we started the journey across to the desert and Vegas! I had a lovely birthday on the 12th. We were at a nice camp site and I got taken out for a lovely dinner! We arrived in Vegas yesterday. We're staying at the Luxor hotel which is in the shape of a pyramid and has an ancient egyiptian theme-its soooooo cool! You walk in the entrance and the casino is right there! I haven't gambled yet but me and uncle dave are gona tongiht-it sucks cos you have to be 21 over here so em can't drink or gamble! The heat is so extreme! It really feels like the desert!
Today we went out to the grand canyon! It was such a good trip. We got an 8 seater plane out there and then a helicopter down to the base, then a boat up the river to a nice buffet lunch then the little plane back again! It really is one of those sights that you can't describe! Another wonder of the world to be ticked off my list! so a big thank you to mum dad uncle david and auntie jane for an awesome birthday present!
Only 8 days left! It'll be weird to be home again!
Location: Los Angeles!, USA
Well my body clock is rather confused! I left Fiji at 10:20pm and arrived at 2:15 lunchtime!!! we passed the date line so I've kinda had the 10th August twice (really bad for budgeting and for waiting for my birthday haha!!) I met up with Ems and checked into a hostel on Hollywood BLVD!! I'm so star struck! My eyes are peeled for Robbie Williams so he can meet me and start falling in love haha. Just had my first 'LA experience'...am in internet cafe and this girl next to me kept getting phone calls and putting on this low husky voice so I strained to hear what she was saying (I'm a naturally curious person you see!) and I heard her say 'yes I charge $150 for half an hour and my corner is sunset and bay!!!!!' wow a real live prostitute!!!!!
I had a lovely last 2 days in Fiji. All my friends from Robinson Crusoe had also headed back to the mainland so caught up with them and then got invited to sing with the band which was nice!
Ems and me are sooooo excited as we're meeting up with Uncle David, Auntie Jane, Lozzie and Tom tomorrow to head for Vegas!!! Another road trip-think I'll leave the driving to everyone else though!! Have put a few pictures up of Fiji-they don't do justice to the real beauty of it all though. Only 14 days til we're home!! Don't wana leave but can't wait to see you all!xxx
Location: Nadi Bay, Fiji
Well here we are back on mainland. It was sooooo sad to leave the island today. Clare, Mary ems and me all got the same boat and are staying in the same dorm this evening so thats nice. I then meet up with all the other guys who coime off the island tomorrow so its not goodbye yet! Robinson Crusoe was such a cool island! I could've stayed there for so much longer. We just went shopping for souvenirs in Nadi and got offered more Kava in a shop...and you can't reject it so now I feel all sleepy again! Honestly, its so not tasty! Mary is hilarious cos everytime we have it she goes 'oh thats delicious!' in her thick irish accent!! The sarcasm is lost in translation luckily!! Fijian people are the happiest race I've ever encountered!! They are so friendly and chilled out!! I honestly think we are doing something wrong in england! Right time to make the most of the sun!! 16 days til I'm home!!!!xxx
Location: Robinson Crusoe Island, Fiji
Best day in Fiji so far. We have such a good group of people. There was about 12 of us just chilling on the beach today. Then we decided to go on a mass kayaking trip so did a whole lap around the island! Was good fun.
The last two days we have had the funniest showers!! Theres no hot water at all!! Theres a bucket on a harness pulled up high with a shower attachment at the bottom of it and another bucket you use to fill the attached one up with!! The water is so freezing but we found the best way to combat that is to sing really loudly!! So we all set a time and grab a cubicle each-fill our buckets and sing away!!!
This evening was really funny. Mary was on top form and sang us the horse song from father Ted! We had more songs around the bonfire but no party as the security guard pre-empted us and told us we weren't allowed!!!
Location: Robinson Crusoe Island, Fiji
I C U BABY!!!!! This is the Robinson Crusoe catch phrase!!! Its a very loving island!!! When we arrived we had a Kava ceremony. Kava is a powder that is made from a plant similar to a pepper plant and is ground down and mixed with water to make a traditional fijian drink. Its gross!! It tastes like muddy water! It has no alcohol or drugs but it had a numbing effect so when you drink it your lips and tongue feel numb and you go all sleepy. Its very rude to refuse it if you are offered! The ceremony was a blessing for safe travels and you get a small wooden bowlful and you say 'Bula' and down it then clap 3 times! I kept getting the giggles cos everyones face was a picture!! Not the tastiest!!
We had a full day in the sun today. Robinson Crusoe is amazing. Theres only one resort on the island and it takes only 20 minutes to walk around it!! There are hammocks everywhere-plenty on the side where the sun sets which is amazing! We've met a fantastic group of people here including Mary and Clare who have become our friends really quickly. The people are very welcoming and want to know your names and all about you which is nice. They're also fantastic musicians so we've had singing around the bonfire and sunset singalongs which has been awesome.
I got told off this evening as I tried to smuggle alcohol down to the bar disguised in a water bottle!! Its so expensive there!! I wish I could lie!! The security guard said 'whats in the bottle?' and i said 'um...not water?!!!!' doh. Then Mary (crazy irish girl-never met anyone so hilarious!!) decided we'd have a party in her dorm after the bonfire...the thing is that theres only electric until 12 then the generator goes off and the whole island is pitch black so we all had our phone lights and torches! Then the security guard came up again and we all pretended to be asleep (honestly it felt like we were 14 again-soooo much fun being naughty and getting into trouble!!!) then he picked on me and said 'are you supposed to be sleeping up here?' and I went 'um no I'm just visiting!!' which made everyone in the room explode with laughter and we all got in trouble and got sent to bed!!! very good fun.
ok this is gona be a really rubbish short entry but the internet is sooooooo expensive here and I'm quickly running out of money!! Arrived in Fiji and stayed in a tiny hostel on the first night. Everyone was so friendly and smiley! The next mornign I caught the early boat over to Mana island where my lovely ickle sister was waiting for me on the beach! We had an AWESOME 3 days of meeting the nicest people ever and singing lots of beautiful songs and pretty much doing nothing! I feel so relaxed and chilled out! Its true what they say about Fiji...Everything is done in 'Fiji time' which means anytime at all! I had a very bad experience with the mixture of 'ring of fire' (drinking game!) and bounty rum the night before last which resulted in my hugging the toilet!! NOT NICE!! very funy though. Last night I went for a sunset walk with one of the people we'd met-it was so amazing. Got some fab pics. Then we got chatting to these irish men and this fijian man who was hysterically funny and decided he wanted emma to be his wife! The people here are lovely. All the staff learn your names and sing to you all the time. I think I might marry a fijian man as they are so pretty!! On our way back from the walk yesterday we saw about 40 locals playing rugby which was awesome! We reckon it was probably the national team or something haha! We have just got the boat back the mainland before heading back out to another island called Robinson Cruesoe. Its fairly expensive but everything is included so we can go snorkelling and fishing and have massages etc!! Oh yeah me and ems made jewellrey out of coconuts the other day! very cool! Right I had better go. I'm missing the rays haha!! Miss you all and really looking forward to catching up soon.xxxx
Location: Auckland!!, New Zealand
Oh I've had the randomest 24 hours!! So I got my flight to Auckland but I'm only staying for 24 hours because of the conneting flight. I jumped on the bus to the city centre at about 6 last night. I picked a random hostel that seemed fairly close to the shops and centre of town so that today I could get up and have a look around. I walked into my room said hello to the girl sitting in there only to discover shes from......CANVEY ISLAND, ESSEX!!!! So obviously we had to hit the town!! Had mad, drunken, mental night out and didn't get back til 4am so after checking out at 10 I'm a little sleepy and blatently not gona make the most of my day in Auckland! We sat in the coridoor outside our room when we got back making cheese sandwiches cos we were too stingy to buy munch on the way home!! Good times!!
When I got off the plane in Auckland it reminded me of home soooo much!! Its the first time I've seen rain in 9 weeks which was strange! And the roads and signs and scenery are just like England. It was so weird but it made me really happy!! I think I am really looking forward to coming home now!!
After this diary entry I probably won't be able to write for about 10 days because apparently there is no internet on the islands! So I will update you all as soon as I can!!!xxx