Instead of scraping together all of my shiny pebbles, filling the tank in the Calais and schlepping across Australia in a mincing, screaming, belching, beer-drinking, monument-defiling imitation of a vacation, I decided to play it different in 2010.
There was no Balls Out Road Trip (but fear not, its still in the planning) instead I took a real, grown up vacation. I even took a boy with me and everything. Holidays are fucking expensive - especially when you have four-years of holiday payout burning a hole in your pocket and you decide to do things in style, hang the expense and fuck the bills!
So for those who care for such things The Monkey and I packed our duffle bags, found clean t-shirts and fucked off to Queensland for a week on the Gold Coast, where we pledged to "lie on the beach, drink cocktails and fuck surfer boys". His words, not mine, but an ideology that I was prepared to whole-heartedly endorse!
The first little issue we had was the flights we booked. Ours was like the first fucking flight to depart Melbourne, This means we had to get up early. I don't do early, I'm more akin to getting home at 4:00 am, not getting up then. Needless to say, it wasn't until I was in my car, hurtling along the freeway bound for Tullamarine airport that I finally came to life!
Then as I was trying to avoid inappropriate contact with my fellow cattle-class passengers on the flight the sun emerged and gave me a bit of this:
And I was all like 'oh yeah boyo!' I couldn't imagine a nicer way to start the day! Actually it just kept getting better. After landing at the airport the transfer that the Big Poof organised for us got upgraded, from a dirty old Holden Statesman (still good enough for me) to an Audi A8. Drool much? Then to top it all off, we were sitting facing the ocean, stuffing our faces with bacon and eggs, all before 9:00 am.
Sadly, due to construction works some of the most iconic vistas in Surfers Paradise was reduced to this:
No big deal though. There were still a bunch of boys with no shirts getting around, there was sunshine, there was seagulls and there was my all time favourite ever thing:
How else would you expect me to start the day?
Now, I've not been to Queensland since I was a kid, I must've been about seven or eight years old and I was amazed by the memories that came back to me as I walked around. I vividly remember staying on the seventh floor of the President hotel and the fucking place hasn't changed at all in 20 years!
I just stumbled across it behind the place we stayed at! We also had to pay a visit to Ripley's Believe It Or Not. I remember being so freaked out by the amazing exhibits as a kid, and almost 20 years later I was still beside myself with glee at all that was on offer. So. Much. Fun!
To go with my photo of Philip Island's Dame Edna chocolate mosaic, I now have a photo of Dame Edna made from coat hangers!
It also goes without saying that no collection of the absurd is complete without crickets painted to look like Michael Jackson. Ask and you shall receive!
Day two was all about Movie World - a tribute to all things Warner Brothers, and again strikingly similar to how I remember it as a kid. First priority of the day - just seconds after entering the park - was to ride the Lethal Weapon roller coaster. Wheeeeeeeee! Although knowing what I know now, I'd have left my shoes on the platform as a roller coaster with no floor is a fucking difficult place to try and keep your shoes on!
Then the Hollywood Stunt Driver Show. Apparently kids these days are too fucking stupid to know what Police Academy is, so the show has been converted to this, which is fucking UNREAL. It combines two of my all time favorite things: Lancer Evo X's and driving them like they're stolen! Hell yeah mother fucker!
With the adrenaline pumping there was only one thing to do. I had to subject myself to 3 Gs of force on the Superman Escape:
Big Poof sat this one out, so the poor unsuspecting bitch that sat next to me had to endure me hollerin' and whoopin' like a coke-fuelled NASCAR driver. As the ride pulled up and the harnesses were released she turned to me and deadpanned: "You scream like a woman" I just smiled and thanked her!
The next day we hired a car and fucked off to Byron Bay in New South Wales. Obviously the need to road-trip was just too compelling to ignore! It was quite a nice day and there was a whole bunch more surfie boys to look at - why else to you think The Monkey and I were grinning like idiots!
Also - like anyone that heads off from home, we were amused by some of the town names on the way there, like this one - which could only be the birthplace of the pure Aussie bogan, right?
Sadly it turned a bit overcast and there was a slight sprinkle of rain, however it wasn't enough to stop us enjoying ourselves.
We also got to check out the Easternmost point of mainland Australia, just behind that there lighthouse. Those level-changes are more extreme than they look though and I was rooted by the end of it.
We stopped for an ice-cream at the kiosk - obviously this Bush Turkey had the same idea. At first he was cute, then he started hassling tourists for change to make a phone call, and calling them 'dirty mother fuckers' when they declined him. Rude prick!
Following that we spent the next day doing a spot of whale watching. This allowed three things, the first was an amazing view of the Gold Coast skyline.
The second, as you'd expect, was seeing whales. The fuckers are notoriously difficult to photograph though so this is as good as I got.
The third part of the experience was ending up sick as a bastard from sea-sickness. I did not enjoy that part of it at all, but I was determined not to let it ruin my day - we got to see some amazing vistas of whales launching themselves towards the surface, and it truly is a majestic thing to watch.
From there we went on to Sea World. Now we all know I have a weakness for bears, but seeing these two just melted my heart!
Hudson and Nelson are the cutest little boys ever and they're so playful. Plus they've got really big paws and they love eating watermelon. Me too! I could've watched them goofing around all day, however there was also Dolphins!
And even though its for the kids, the Sea Lion show was the coolest thing I've seen in a long time. Claude the Sea Lion is such a fucking cool dude. I wanna be just like him when I grow up!
The wildlife everywhere proved friendly, like this little cutie who stopped to have breakfast with us one morning in our hotel room.
Speaking of our room, it was bloody nice - of course there was a spa and everything and a bathroom that was bigger than my house, see.
Oh, wait, you probably can't see much in that photo at all. Stupid blinding-white over exposure.
As a parting gift our last day was filled with glorious sunshine - perfect for a farewell walk along the beach.
Good bye Gold Coast
Good bye mysterious performing troop from a neighbouring island.
Sigh - holidays are fun. Meanwhile, reality has a lot to answer for!