Thursday, March 20, 2008

Memories

You can try to run away from sadness and surround yourself with beauty, but in the end sadness will still be there. Australia is one of the most amazing and stunning places I have seen, yet I find myself thinking about my brother all the time. There's just so much here that he would have loved. Those of you that know Neal are aware of his love of the ocean. He would always get upset when the ocean was calm, he loved big waves. The waves here are intense. He would have loved it and would have never gotten out of the water. I miss my big brother so much. The loss and emptiness I feel inside hasn't lessened at all and I'm sure it never will. I was listening to an album my friend Robert gave me and there was one song that made me think of Neal.

Last of Days by A Fine Frenzy

something’s causing feet to fly,
rising like a dark knight in silence
traffic’s slow with broken boats
heading for the sea
and I’m an island

I watched you disappear into the clouds
swept away into another town

the world carries on without you
but nothing remains the same
I’ll be lost without you
until the last of days

the sun is in the east,
rising for the beasts
and the beauties
if only I could tear it down,
plant it in the ground to warm your face

I built myself a castle on the beach
watching as it slid into the sea

the world carries on without you
but nothing remains the same
I’ll be lost without you
until the last of days
until the last of days

through wars and harvest moons
I will wait for you.
the world carries on without you
but nothing remains the same
I’ll be lost without you
until the last of days
until the last of days


www.nealaquino.com

Gold Coast-Wednesday


I spent Wednesday in the Gold Coast and had a chance to stop in the Quicksilver/Roxy and Billabong factory outlet stores :)

Brisbane-Tuesday


Nothing ends a day like a buffet dinner at Sizzler. Beer, fried food, soup, salads, cheesy bread and ice cream...yum-ish :)

Brisbane-Tuesday


Today I visited the GOMA (Queensland's Gallery of Modern Art).

Brisbane-Monday


It turned into a beautiful night.

Monday-Brisbane


It was a cloudy rainy day...

Brisbane-Monday


I was in Brisbane this week. On Monday I visited the State Library of Queensland where they had two exhibtions (free so of course I went). One exhibtion studied people's ideas of Paradise. The other exhibit was about long distance love. I also visited the Queensland Art Gallery. There were a number of galleries featuring Australian artists. The first is The Blue Alice by Charles Blackman and the next is Painting no. 3 by Peter Upward.

Noosa-Sunday


These freaky looking guanas were encircling our campsite. There were about 4 trying to find food.

Noosa-Saturday



We set up camp just as the sun set. Above left James is trying to help the campfire along by using bugspray... Below are my attempts at taking night photos from our campsite.

Noosa-Saturday



This weekend James and I went camping in the Great Sandy National Park. We packed all our gear into the boat and sailed down the Noosa River and across a couple VERY choppy and LARGE lakes to get to our campsite. It took us about 2 hours to get to the site.

Noosa-Friday


As we were crusing along the river, we saw thousands of bats flying all around us. I have a soft spot for these furry animals, so I was pretty excited. I felt as if I was in a National Geographic excursion. Note: I've been trying to upload a video for the past hour. It's obviously NOT working and I'm getting sick of being in this internet cafe. I'll try to add it later.

Noosa-Friday


The water was so still it looked like glass.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Noosa-Friday


This past Friday James and I took his boat out for a ride on the Noosa River. It was a beautiful night.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Early Morning



It was fun taking pictures of James surfing. People surfing around James asked if we were doing a photoshoot for a magazine. Maybe this could be my next career move :)

Early Morning


James woke up at 5:30 this morning to go surfing before work. I decided to tag along and take some photos. It was such a beautiful morning.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Noosa


Sunday night we had the most delicious steak and chips! YUM!

Noosa


One of James' favorite swimming holes

Noosa



We hiked through Kondalilla National Park. The trees were massive and so impressive.

Noosa


View from a dam we passed on our sunday drive.

Noosa


Sunday we took a little road trip to a small town outside Noosa. We ate lunch and watched a steam powered train pass us.

Noosa


Saturday we had the craving for roasted marshmallows. What to do? Build a mini campfire in the backyard of course! After gorging on sugar puffs we headed to Hastings Street for a small music festival. The main band was The Vasco Era. It was a good evening!

Noosa


There was a week long surf competition in Noosa, ending this weekend. We saw people interviewing surf legend Tom Carroll (I of course had no idea who he was :)

Noosa

Noosa


This actually reads, "welcome to noosa", courtesy of James...

Noosa

Noosa



When I imagined what Australia would be like Noosa is the exact image I had in my head. They have rainforests, mountains, blue skies, beautiful beaches with the finest sand. It's absolutely beautiful here! I love it!

Noosa


We went for a walk in one of the National Parks and spotted a koala. They don't do much.

Laundry Day


While James was at work we relaxed and did laundry.

Noosa


On Thursday afternoon Tina and I took a bus up to the Sunshine Coast...Noosa. James lives up here and we decided to spend the weekend at his house.

Byron Bay


A night out on the town. After the bars closed we walked along the beach and stared at the stars.

Byron Bay


Tina played the Ukulele on the beach while James went surfing and I laid in the sand. Weeeeeeeeeee!

Byron Bay


The beach resort we stayed at was right next to Belongil Beach. You can see where the creek runs into the ocean. The water was a dark color were the tea tree oil ran into the ocean.

Byron Bay


On Friday evening James drove down from Brisbane (after work) to spend the weekend with us in Byron Bay. We rented a two bedroom cabin. It was, um, rustic...think Blairwitch Project :) It was actually really clean and comfy inside.

--interruption--


I just had to quickly interrupt my blog about Byron Bay to let everyone know some exciting news....my hair is finally long enough for a ponytail!!!!

Byron Bay


Chillaxing on the hammocks in our hostel.




We walked along the coastline and up to the lighthouse. The view was spectacular!

Byron Bay


Our hostel had free bike rentals. I miss biking so much and I kept bugging Tina until she finally said yes to biking with me :) In the first photo I'm trying to figure out different ways to bike with my bag. That option was uncomfortable. We ended up getting stuck in the rain and we were a bit soaked, but it was a great time. The first picture on the second row shows a sign warning people that there are brown snakes in the area. I had been walking on the trail, but as soon as I saw that sign I jumped up on my bike and started peddling fast. We took a little break and the sun came out. We jumped on our bikes and continued on our adventure.

Byron Bay


Byron Bay is a cute little beach town with lots of caf├ęs and boutiques. I really like it here!

Hello Byron Bay!


This is one of the grosser hostels at which we've stayed. We shared the room with 8 other girls (10 total). One of the girls had a bowl of half-eaten soup sitting under her bed. She actually stepped in it at one point. It's always interesting when girls feel comfortable sleeping in the nude when they're sharing a room with strangers. Sorry, random thought. The girls in the room were really nice and we made some new friends.

Bye Bye Coffs


Our first stop on the way to Byron Bay was at the Big Prawn...it's just a rest stop.

Coffs Harbour


This was one of the nicer hostels I've stayed. Tina and I bought a bottle of wine to go with the amazing pasta dinner we are about to cook up.

Coffs Harbour


After a LONG day of walking, Tina and I collapsed on the beach and watched guys kite surfing.

Coffs Harbour




We walked all over the place today. We stopped in at the Clog Barn, which was literally and little barn filled with clogs. Next we went to the Big Banana. We were the only people there and it looked quite sad and deserted. I tried the taboggan ride and was scared I was going to fly off the track. We stopped in the Lolly (Candy) Shop on the way out. I'm exhausted!