Things I Learned

Round Australia Road Trip #33

When doing something completely different from your usual way of life, there are certain to be some moments of self-discovery; travelling vast distances with a caravan for seven weeks around our amazing country revealed some new aspects of my character. Here are ten things I learned about myself on the Round Australia Road Trip.

1. I enjoy flying – but only in big planes. Our flight over the Bungle Bungles was in a 6 seater Cessna C10 and our very enthusiastic pilot Sam made sure we all got the best possible view, by tipping the plane in all directions. I didn’t actually see everything because some of the time my eyes were closed, and by the time we landed I felt decidedly queer.



2. Animals are not really my thing, especially when they are watching me. Finding evidence they’re around also gives me the creeps. (I knew this already, but seeing these creatures reinforced my lack of enthusiasm for living things other than humans.)

3. I can take great photos which look like I was much closer than I really was, because my camera has a fantastic zoom. Also, after taking many fuzzy photos, I finally mastered the macro setting on my camera.

4. I can drive a boat. I was being supervised, but the steering was all me!


5. I can also tow a caravan. However, I cannot park it or reverse it and I will definitely never overtake one of these while towing it.



6. I loved visiting the outback but I do not want to live there.


7. I need to keep my day job because there are many jobs I don’t want to do. I would make a terrible deep sea diver or pioneering explorer. I like being comfortable far too much.

8. I am irresistible to flies. I am not unique in this, because flies aren’t fussy. (I know you have seen this photo before, but it is my best fly photo!)


9. I can run faster than a sting ray can swim. I discovered this skill when a sting ray came past me in the water at Monkey Mia. I was out of there in no time. I don’t know if the sting ray even noticed me, but I did not go back in.


10. I do not want to ride a bike across Australia. Many other people take on the challenge, but I don’t see the attraction. (Do you see this cyclist’s fly net? He’s irresistible to flies too.)



While most of these revelations will probably not ever again be useful, some might come in handy one day. You never know when I might be called upon to race a stingray!

And so, after more than 14 ooo km, nine weeks on the road for Mr ET and seven weeks for me, the Round Australia Road Trip comes to an end. But stay tuned, because another adventure is just around the corner!

39 thoughts on “Things I Learned

    • Thank you Helen. I impressed myself too. I wasn’t sure I could do it and it was quite nerve-wracking at the start. I was always relieved when I handed the driving back over to Mr ET after an incident free drive!


  1. This post is adorable. I loved what you learned about yourself and the wonderful pictures you found to illustrated your point. The flies are disgusting! I’m proud of the new skills you developed on the trip, and laughed out loud at your plane riding commentary. Good thing you didn’t go on a helicopter ride! You might have been in the back seat crying like the gal we went with when the helicopter suddenly dropped a few stories. Great post. πŸ™‚ Loved hearing about some of these things in person even more. I could hear you saying all this as I read. I love that! πŸ™‚

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  2. Your report of the Big Australian Trip was just terrific. You did so much, saw so much and told us about it. Thanks very much. I wonder what is next, you left us with a teaser.)

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    • I loved sharing it and am so glad you all enjoyed it along with me.

      We have just returned from 16 days in Hawaii, which was amazing. I sat down yesterday to write a list of all the stories I can do and it is very long. It will keep me going for a while. (That’s another thing I know about me – I write lists!)


  3. You really did learn a lot about yourself on this trip! When we drove to Cooktown there were cyclists on the road and I wondered where the hell they had come from because we were literally in the middle of nowhere! I’ve never tried to outrun a sting ray, but I think I’d probably come a close second to you πŸ˜‰

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    • Well, we just spent two wonderful weeks in Hawaii – the first week with Marsha Lee aka tchistorygal. So I have plenty of stories to share. We also have plans for some more travel this year so I won’t run out of material any time soon.

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  4. Plenty of time to contemplate this list on your big trip. I can especially empathise with the need to run after seeing the sting ray. After all it was a sting ray killed Steve Irwin and look what a hero he was…

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  5. Oh, Carol, being in a tiny tipping plane makes me nervous just thinking about it. πŸ™‚ Your grand Australian tour sounds fantastic, though. What an experience to journey through such varied landscapes!


  6. So, it wasn’t just a journey of discovery of your country, it was a journey of discovery about yourself! I think you should be justifiably pleased with your driving (boat and caravan towing) and your skills at outrunning a stingray. Being irresistible to flies can’t be a very nice thing to be – now if each fly was made of gold, for example, then it might be a different matter…

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  7. This was a brilliant read. Sounds like we are even more like minded then we knew (don’t like small planes, not a fan of animals sizing us up, not planning to cycle around our vast country either…. but we did find a difference, we can’t tow). And yep, those flies are bad πŸ˜‰
    Your photos of your trip looks amazing!! 9 weeks on the open road, how incredible.
    You may have mentioned this in others posts that we are yet to read but did you join a 4WD group or anything to do this trip or did you do it all on your own?

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    • Maybe towing will be your next big achievement. We did this trip by ourselves. Mr ET and our daughter did the Toowoomba to Darwin part, then he and I did the Darwin – Perth – Toowoomba part. We did meet plenty of like-minded adventurers on the way though.

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  8. What an epic trip you had. I hope that when Doug and I eventually do the Big Lap we have as many amazing adventures, I could live without the flies and drama, but then again this is Australia.


  9. Pingback: Things I Learned Traveling Around Australia – Marsha Ingrao

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