A Travellerspoint blog

Indo - Part one!

Lombok to Bali

sunny 31 °C
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I arrived in Denpasar to find out that all the buses stopped about 30 minutes earlier so had to get a taxi to Kuta – I thought I would stay there as its easy arrange a lift to the Gili Islands the following day. I had decided to go and see my fiend Helen that I had met in Sydney a few months back who was on the Gili islands just off Lombok – about a 2 and a half hour fast boat ride from Kuta.
I had heard a lot about Kuta being a party destination where the aussies go on holiday and it wasn’t wrong! My god it was like being in Magalouf – ok when I was 18 maybe but not so much now – it was crazy. Now Kuta has no street signs – ok so how am I meant to find a hotel that I heard was cheap and good? The taxi driver dropped me at the end of a dark ally and said it was just down there – obviously he lied as it wasn’t so I set out to find a hotel – now it wasn’t hard as there everywhere but they all charge by the room – fine if four of you stay there but me on my lonesome looked like I would have to pay more then I wanted. It was getting late and not wanting to walk around all night decided on a cheap place I settled on one – ohh my god it was a dive – but needs must! On the way into the room I saw the biggest cockroach I have ever seen in my life run by – it was bigger then my hand! I did end up sharing my room with quite a few of them – but I gave them names and decided to think of them more as pets.
Gili T

Gili T


I had a walk around Kuta and decided I would head straight to the Gili Islands getting out of Kuta at 6:30 am in the morning. Now I should have gone straight to bed as it was almost midnight but I was starving and needed a drink – big mistake – ended up bumping into these aussies and went out. It really is crazy there – definitely more like an 18 – 30’s destination rather then a relaxing place to stay. So the next morning I was picked up and headed out on the boat to Gili Trawangan one of the three islands that make up the Gili islands. These islands are like paradise – just what I was looking for. No cars or motorbikes are allowed on these small islands so no noise – it was bliss. I knew instantly that I would like this place – and I wasn’t wrong!
Me and Helen decided to take a walk around the island – its pretty small so only took around 2 hours to do so. The first night we went out with a few guys that Helen had bumped in to – they were a really good laugh. Basically every two nights there is a party on the island in a different bar – I quickly discovered the reason for this – it was to get over the night before! I bumped in to some Dutch girls Jeanine and Bob (it wasn’t her real name but I couldn’t pronounce it so she settled for Bob) they were a really good laugh and joined our group over the next few days. Most of the days were spent on the beach – I did promise myself I would go diving as it was meant to be really good but I couldn’t pull myself from the beach.
Gili T sunset

Gili T sunset


Helen and a few of the guys left on the Saturday so I found a cheaper place to stay – they didn’t leave without a final goodbye though – the Friday night was party night in Rudy’s – I wont go into details but it was a lot of fun. With the guys gone I thought I d spend some time to start planning my trip through Indonesia and of course get some diving in.
Going off topic a little bit here – as I m writing this I can here two Girls from England that I have to say make me ashamed to be English. First of all they are bitching really loudly about the Wifi not working on the beach from the café we are in – come on your on holiday on an island – Im sure it can wait…. Second of all they have been really rude to the locals that are selling bracelets on the beach – I know they can be annoying but they are only trying to earn a living and they were so rude to the guy. Now they are complaining about being given the wrong change – when they realized it was actually themselves that were wrong and not the waiter they said ‘well we have been in like 6 countries in the last week – how am I supposed to get used to all the different money?’ argghghhhhhhhhhh people like that drive me crazy… Ok rant over lol
Rudy's bar

Rudy's bar


I booked myself on a snorkeling trip for the day which was good as it took us around all three of the islands and we had lunch on Gili Air. The coral isn’t the best around the islands – nothing spectacular but you cannot say that about the marine life, its amazing – there are turtles everywhere.
Duncan a guy from England that I met was training to be a dive master so I thought I d go with him as he gave me a quick run through of everything again saving me having to do a refresher course. I went diving at Shark point hoping to see some sharks, I saw loads of marine life, huge (and I mean huge) turtles, octopuses, some huge fish, moray eels, etc. I was glad that I went diving – its been over a year since I did it last and I love it. Over the next few days I had met some guys from Essex and we spent most of the time on the beach – I had found a dirt cheap room which was clean and I couldn’t really see myself leaving the island – this place is seriously one of the best places I have been. The locals are really friendly and the island is beautiful – never more so then when we went to the other side one evening to watch the sunset – there was a group of about 10 of us – we spent the time having a few drinks, listening to Bob Marley watching the sun go down. I had been trying out the new panoramic setting on my new camera and got some awesome pictures.
So I had been on the island for a week and a half – most people just stay for three or four days so I was getting to know a few of the long termers on there – which got me thinking about leaving – everyone talks about how beautiful Indonesia is and I didn’t think it was fair to spend all my time on the Gili Islands. I was thinking about a boat trip to Komodo island to see the dragons but it was pretty expensive so instead I decided to head west through Bali, Java and Sumatra. Now, I didn’t plan on heading off this soon but it was one of the party nights on the island at the Irish bar and I bumped in to Eva that was on my diving trip the day before and she said she was heading off the next day in the same direction – perfect, as I didn’t fancy going to Sumatra on my own to be honest – not many tourists go there so it will be nice to travel in a pair. The only problem I could see with this was that she was leaving the next day at 10am – bear in mind this we agreed this at about midnight when the rum was flowing… So dragging myself out of bed the next morning, I checked out and went to meet Eva at the Jetty. We were first heading to Ubud – its meant to be very cultural with lots of temples and dances so I was pretty excited to see some of South East Asia that wasn’t all Beach life. The only problem was I would have to survive the 2 hour boat trip and a 2 hour bus ride - I survived (only just though).
Ubud - local dance

Ubud - local dance


Driving through the country side was beautiful – very green, lots of rice fields and very crazy driving! We arrived in Ubud checked in and went out to explore – luckily it was Thursday and once a week on a Thursday they have a dance night for visitors, it was pretty cool, but it did go one for a long time – by the end I was getting a little bored I have to admit but it was definitely worth going. We had a quiet one that night planning what we could do over the next few days in Ubud.
Ubud really is gorgeous, its got a very tropical feel, its really green and there are rice fields everywhere. To be honest I was expecting a lot more poverty but it looks beautiful and the people are among the happiest and friendliest I have met on my travels so far. They actually want to speak to you and aren’t always after money. Don’t get me wrong there are still people in need here – evident went a begging women saw me and Eva coming I caught her out of the corner of my eye shaking the baby to make it cry in an attempt to make us feel sorry for her no doubt.
The monkey that stole my water!

The monkey that stole my water!


We decided to spend two nights in Ubud and after reading the lonely planet decided to follow a walking tour that was about 9km long. First stop was close to our place the Mandala Wisata Wanara Wana (known as the Monkey forest sanctuary) it was crazy. At the entrance there were people selling bananas for the monkeys I was just about to buy some when I saw the monkeys all over someone that was feeding them - usually I like monkeys but these really didn’t look so friendly. We put all our things in our bags and started walking. When I read about the sanctuary I thought it would be caged off but they are free to come and go and there is hundreds of them. I saw one guy that had one jumping on his head which looked pretty cool until another one jumped on and they started fight whilst clinging on to him, he had a cut arm which didn’t warm me to the monkeys. They were crazy they were literally everywhere. I had just bought a new big bottle of water before going in and one of the bigger monkeys decided he wanted it wrenching it out of my hands. I went to try and get it back quickly back pacing when he snarled at me showing his big teeth – I decided he could have my 30 cents bottle of water. It obviously wasn’t his first time stealing one as even though it still had the seal on it he had it open in seconds. I was chatting to one of the locals and he said that quite often they steal cameras – once they realize the camera isn’t food they are willing to trade it for a banana. It was hilarious.
Now all through my trip you always get people trying to sell you drugs – you always get the whisper when you walk by ‘coke?’, ‘majhurana?’ you learn just to ignore it instead of this in the monkey sanctuary it was ‘banana?’ they did it in the same whispering voice – I found it hilarious.
DSC00148

DSC00148


We walked on through some rice fields and a few hours later had completed a loop of Ubud. Its funny as because that route is listed in the lonely planet the locals have gotten wind of this and point out the way you should be going when you look lost (and also try to sell you things). It was a great day we also found ourselves a taxi driver for the following morning – because a lot of the temples are a distance around Ubud its easier to rent a driver for the day. It was 30 bucks but split between two it wasn’t so bad and we didn’t have to get a bus to Munduk our next destination about two hours north as he agreed to drop us there after seeing all the temples.
I was sitting out on the porch and bumped in to two Austrians that I met in Kuta when I first arrived in Indonesia so we arranged a time to meet and went out for a good feed and watering.
The first temple we visited was Pura Taman Ayun which means Beautiful Garden – it was really pretty and probably the best temple we saw that day, we also visited a plantation – if could call it that – and tasted a few spices and drinks. We also visited Pura Luhur Batukua which was a temple high up in the mountains and boy did it rain. It was ok, not as impressive as the first but it was still worth a visit. As soon as we arrived in Munduk we realized that its not the kind of place you stay long so we headed straight out in search some waterfalls that we heard about. So we headed out into the jungle following a very sketchy map. My god it was a trek, it only took around two hours but we basically had to climb up and down the side of a mountain – steep is not the word! Every now and then we would stumble along a few locals and they would point us in the right direction. We made it out of the jungle just before it got dark which was lucky as I didn’t fancy trying to find our way out in the dark.
Munduk waterfall

Munduk waterfall


Keeping moving we headed to Lovina having negotiated hard with the local Bemo driver to get us there. If I wasn’t good at negotiating I am now – they try to really rip you off – he started at 100,000 but managed to get him down to 20,000 which was still expensive, but we didn’t have a lot of choice being in this little town. So Lovina was our base for heading to the national park specifically to Pulau Menjangan to dive as I’ve heard amazing things about it. And we were not disappointed one bit – we headed out in the morning at 8am and we out at the dive site by 11. The first dive was awesome – saw a few turtles but the most notable was the thousands of fish – I looked up and I could hardly see the top of the water through all of the fish. The second dive goes down as my best dive yet – we dove the wall – which is a drop off and you cannot see below you just this amazing coral and all kinds of fish – it was really something special.. . and to top it all off I saw a shark! My first one I ve seen diving – it was a black tip about 1.5metres long – ok not quite a killer but still all the same it was my first shark sighting diving – I was over the moon.
Sunset bar - Gili T

Sunset bar - Gili T


I was shattered but I was on a bit of a tight schedule if I was to fit Java and Sumatra in as my visa expired in a couple of weeks. So straight from the dive sight we headed to Gilimanuk on the west coast of Bali to get the local ferry to Ketapang in Java and the journey east continued…

Stay tuned!

Posted by dezmondos 04:28 Archived in Indonesia Comments (0)

Sydney

What turned out to be a very quick stop in Sydney


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I wasn’t that prepared for the flight – leaving DR on Friday and not getting in to Sydney until Monday but it ended up being a really cool flight, I met some pretty cool people along the way (two of which had the same birthday as me, freaky!) and blew about a weeks budget in Asia in the bars. So I arrived in Sydney all prepared to find a job to save up for Asia – I wasn’t that excited about this part of the job to be honest as 16 months without any real work might have made me a little lazy. I did the usual handing out CV’s in bars and applying for everything and anything. Now the only problem about applying for everything and anything when you get offered the job you think ‘do I really want to do this?’.
Opera House

Opera House


I met up with a few girls that I met when I was last in Sydney and went out for one of their birthdays to a Thai restaurant and had a big night out on the Saturday. I didn’t do any of the touristy stuff like last time as I had seen most of it – but that didn’t stop me getting a few more photos of the Opera House. The job hunting started well in the first few days I got offered one in a resort at Ayers Rock that turned out to pay hardly anything and another in Sales, I doubted I could save much on that wage. So it got me thinking why am I staying here? I don’t really want to be here – I only get one shot at this trip so I thought to hell with it and booked a flight to Bali in Indonesia – stupid maybe as the cash situation is looking dyer but I really want to get to Asia. So I had another week in Sydney and that just consisted of meeting up with friends.
Me and Cecilia - Darling Harbour

Me and Cecilia - Darling Harbour


So it was a pretty small trip and an even smaller entry on this blog but I’m geared up and ready to hit Asia. I did have a flash of genius whilst in Aus, while packing up my bag for the millionth time on this trip it came to me that Asia is hot and half the stuff in my bag I never wear so I bought a new 33 litre backpack which I can take as hand luggage on planes and sent the rest of my clothes home. With out a doubt the best decision I have made – ok I will need to do washing more often but it beats carrying around two big bags! The point was just proven as I am writing this with a five foot girl walking past with bags bigger then her! I might not be able to dress up now and look fancy but its Asia so I don’t really have to be smart.
Harbour Bridge

Harbour Bridge


I don’t even have to put it in the luggage compartments on the bus with saves me having to worry about people going through it. I would recommend for everyone to travel this light – I really would. So of to Denpasar.

Posted by dezmondos 02:49 Comments (0)

Birthday in Dominican Republic

Back for another visit

sunny 34 °C
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So back in the Dominican Republic… It was a really good flight – don’t you just love it when the flight is empty and you get three seats to lay across? Although I did find out why when they announced it over the intercom (now this was about an hour into the flight) “Ladies and Gentleman, you are all aware of the hurricane off the coast of Puerto Rico but hopefully this should not cause us any problems at all”… What? I mean really… What!!! Ýou are all aware?? Maybe I missed that memo – lol – apparently it has been on the news for the past week but being as its hard to watch TV when you traveling I was not aware.
Lifes a beach!

Lifes a beach!


But luckily the captain was correct and it was a really nice flight – I can recommend Jet Blue. So Katherine picked me up and it was back to the crazy driving of the Dominican Republic, ahh I ve missed it!
The first week was pretty chilled, we spent most of the time either on the beach or meeting up with Fabio that we met last year. Katherines friend also had free passes to Mint, a night club in the city, which allowed us free entry and meant we could drink for free! Great, free nights out – well that was until I discovered the Casino in there, doh. We also went to the National Aquarium with Fabio and Katherine’s friend Grizet, which was a laugh – the Aquarium itself wasn’t great but the sight of Fabio running trying to catch a big Iguana was definitely worth it.
Iguana catching

Iguana catching


My Spanish was gradually getting better – although its really hard to try and learn on and off like I have been. I really wish I tried harder in South America now. Anyway, the following weekend we headed up to Puerto Plata – Fabio was taking us to the beach as he lived in Santiago about 40 minutes away – it ended up being an interesting day – it ended up being a lot further away then we thought, and by the time we got there it started to rain. Not quite worth driving to the opposite end of the country for but we had a good laugh – the drive back was the best part believe it or not. We bought a few drinks and had a really good laugh on the way back.
It was my 28th Birthday the following Wednesday so we booking into a resort for the weekend in Punta Cana to celebrate, Punta Cana is a four hour drive from the capital on the east coast of the island. We arrived and spent a long weekend in luxury – free drinks, free food, beach, sun and pool! What else could I ask for?
Playa Hemingway

Playa Hemingway


It was a really good few days and got a nice tan. On one of the nights of entertainment they were asking for volunteers from the audience for the Miss Eve competition (Miss Universe). So I did what every guy would do and grabbed Katherine’s hand and raised it. So she was one of four contestants for that night miss universe contest – don’t think she was that impressed first of all, lol. Katherine didn’t win, but she should have... obviously the contest wasn’t based on looks.
Santo Domingo National Aquarium

Santo Domingo National Aquarium


For the first contest they wanted a male volunteer from the audience – so sensing what was going to happen I quickly volunteered and went up on stage – yep I guessed it right – Lap Dance competition! Woop woop. So after my free lap dances (and free bottle of rum for participating) I sat back and watched the show, which was pretty good and very funny. We spent the days just chilling out at the beach and by the pool – the thought of having to find a job in a couple of weeks could not be further from my mind. We took some Kayaks out in the sea which was good although Katherine wouldn’t let us go out to the reef – which was actually a good job as the waves were really big out there.
The evenings were filled with eating, drinking, watching the shows and a lot of Shithead (card game). Which is the best game ever by the way… Katherine did get a little annoyed as I kept on beating her at one point she owed me 500 pesos and she was going to have to drive the four hour trip back to Santo Domingo – I would like to say she took it well, but she threw the cards and one landed in the pool… it was even funnier when she jumped in the pool fully clothed to retrieve it. That’s my girl. Anyway to cut a long story short I let her win everything back (honestly ;-)).
Birthday Lunch

Birthday Lunch


So after a great few days we headed back to the capital – for a day that I was dreading – my 28th birthday – Only kidding it doesn’t bother me that much, the last one was spent in Mexico and this one the Dominican Republic so life cant be that bad. Time does fly though – I have just realized I have been away 16 months now…
Two days before I was to leave it was a sad day – my 28th birthday – god I am getting old. Katherine had a really good day planned. We went to Neptunes this amazing restaurant in Boca Chica for a bit of luxury– about an hour away from Santo Domingo. I love the place you are out over the sea so when it gets to hot you can get straight into the sea. We had a table booked in Hooters for dinner so about 8 of us went to grab some food and drinks. Katherine had bought a huge cheesecake for me and the Hooters girls all sang happy birthday and gave me a dance (as I have said before – it’s a hard life).
Birthday Dinner @ Hooters

Birthday Dinner @ Hooters


The night ended at a night club and casino and I actually walked out of the with more then I went in with – that must be a first. Although it was a bit lucky, our blackjack dealer could not count – she had 21 and thought she was bust and paid out on us – so we took that as a sign and left with a couple thousand pesos. It was a really good birthday and made it a lot easier turning 28!
I have been trying to plan my trip over the next few months but I have changed my mind about a million times. At first it was going to be New Zealand then straight to Asia but funds are getting low so I have decided to go back to Sydney for a couple of months and find work – hopefully that will happen quickly! My mum and sister have said they will meet me in Thailand for Christmas which will be really nice, so that is one decision made – I will be in Thailand for Xmas.
Hooters!

Hooters!


Anyway, off to the airport for my monster trip to Australia. Im flying from Dominican Republic to New York, staying overnight, then flying to LA, then New Zealand and finally arrive in Sydney. So wish me luck!

Posted by dezmondos 08:35 Archived in Dominican Republic Comments (0)

New York City and Washington DC

Last week in the USA


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I didn’t think Id be writing a blog update this soon after the last but I thought it was worth a mention….
P6150463

P6150463


So last time I left it I had just arrived in NYC. I booked into the Parke Central for a couple of nights (I know, pushed the boat out a bit) but I think I deserved a bit of luxury after camp! It was great to in NYC again, Im not much of a city fan to be honest but theres something about it I cant quite put my finger on.
P6150475

P6150475


So I did all the tourist stuff (again!) – lost count how many times I have been on the Staten Island Ferry to see the statue of liberty but I was with Katherine, Fion and Cecilia so it was a great day out. We met up with a few other guys from camp one night and decided to go out to a huka bar. It was good fun, I’m not much of a smoker to be honest but it was really cool – I would recommend the mint or peach.
I met up with Aldo and Diana who I stayed with last year whilst I was in Mexico and spent the day sightseeing (ok half of it was spent in a bar) but it was a good send off. That’s the part I love most about working the summer at camp – I have met so many friends from all over the world, I love the different cultures. Its even better that I get to go and visit these new friends in their home countries. I have added Hong Kong to visit Fion and South Korea to visit Yo bin this summer which I m sure will be amazing experiences.
P6180479

P6180479


Now Sheldon the director at camp had kindly let me use his apartment in White Plains which is about 30 minutes from the city. Vanessa and Bryce also live in White plains which was great as we could hang out. Now the weather had improved drastically improved so me and Vanessa went for a drive up to the Kensico Dam in white plains – it’s a beautiful area and dam (never thought Id say that about a dam, lol) I never thought New York had so much greenery. That night we went to the Ritz in White Plains – they have a bar on the 42nd floor called 42 funnily enough. What a view! Again, didn’t think I would be drinking cocktails in a posh bar on my trip but it was happy hour so it wasn’t that much of a treat.
P6180485

P6180485


Tara from camp came up on the Friday as we had planned a road trip to Washington DC, Vanessa had kindly lent me her car for the weekend and Randie had offered to put us up for the night in Baltimore about 40 minutes from DC. We left at 5am in the morning (yes 5am!) so we could miss all the traffic heading out of the city. We arrived at Randie’s and headed into see the sights of Baltimore. I have to say I was impressed… it has a really nice harbor so we stayed there and had lunch. We went out for dinner that night and had an early one as Washington DC involves a lot of walking!
P6200531

P6200531


Now I have never been to Washington DC before but I always wanted to see all the attractions - mostly because they have been in so many films. We started off at the Capitol building past the IRS, FBI buildings and ended up at the White House. It was close to 100 degrees so we were sweating like hell but it was worth it to see it all. So we arrived at the White House – it was a lot smaller then it looked in the films but it was a nice area. There was protest stall that had been there opposite the White House since the 80’s protesting about Nuclear weapons which was pretty cool.
P6200546

P6200546


We then headed down to the Washington Monument which is huge! And past the Reflection pool towards the Lincoln Memorial. It was a really good sight and was definitely worth the trip down. The Vietnam Memorial was also worth a visit, it’s a wall of names, thousands of names… it gave me a lump in my throat to be honest.
P6200568

P6200568


We then visited the Arlington Graveyard which is huge! I have never seen so many graves. We were shattered by this pointy from all the walking and the heat but we went up to see JFK ‘s grave and we made it just in time to see the changing of the guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It was such a good weekend, it was good to see Randie from camp and her crazy dog Rylie we just had the 4 hour journey back to NYC.
P6200551

P6200551


So that was the end of my USA adventure, Vanessa dropped me off at the airport that morning and I was off to the Dominican Republic!

Posted by dezmondos 15:40 Archived in USA Comments (0)

End of my USA adventure

End of camp - good times had

30 °C
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Right, where did I leave it last…. I have been getting a bit slack keeping up with the blog lately so I will try and get my ass in gear and get writing.
It has been a really good camp season this year, Im so glad I came back – it was the choice out of a bar job in Australia or Camp for another year – no contest at all! It hasn’t been as social for me this year but I suppose I have had to lead by example and be a good role model (what they don’t know wont hurt them, lol).
Day off

Day off


Its been a relaxed summer at camp, don’t get me wrong – certain days it has been as crazy as ever but that’s how I like it to be honest – it keeps me busy. I have a had few really good days off so far, we have just been chilling by the lake or going into the local town to grab some real food (anything but camp food to be honest). The nights out have been pretty good as well, the local bars still have the same staff from last year which is good as it means cheap drinks! Although I am really starting to tell that Im getting older, I used to be able to get up in the morning and work no problems after a night out – not so much anymore, lol.
Our New Jeep!

Our New Jeep!


Me and Jenkins who was at camp last year decided to do a road trip around the USA after camp finished for a month, we planned out a route and decided to buy a car as it was the same price as renting and we could keep the camp for the following summer. So that was settled – we needed to buy a car – after looking online for cars we decided on a Jeep Grand Cherokee – what a car we only paid $1300 for it and it looked and drove great, ok it was high mileage but with a 4 liter engine it wasn’t to bad. Now I would go into details about our planned trip around 32 states but it didn’t quite go as we planned, just keep reading and you will find out in a bit…
Party in Utopia

Party in Utopia


Anyway back to camp, we had some great days out with the kids, our first trip was to Dorny park, an amusement park. Now anyone that knows me at all will know that I hate roller coasters and theme park rides (don’t ask me why – I used to go on them all the time!) and Dorny Park consists of me just watching people go on rides. But all together the day went really well and everyone enjoyed themselves.
Me and Katherine NYC

Me and Katherine NYC


Camp was going so fast, I couldn’t believe when we only had 3 weeks left. Camp is strange like that – it feels like you have been there forever but at the same time it feels like it is whizzing by. Right, back to the car situation, so the first thing you have to do in the USA is to register the car to get your plates – simple – just go to the DMV and get plates… Nope they needed a PA state ID. This shouldn’t be a problem I thought as I rang them before we bought the car and they told me it was fine though we weren’t citizens of the USA we could still get an ID if we had proof that we will return next year. So camp gave me a letter saying that I would be back and on our next day off we went to get our ID.
Road trip to NYC

Road trip to NYC


Surprise, surprise when we got there they informed us that we needed to be in the country for at least a year to get a PA ID card, so we showed our proof that we were coming back next year but they were having none of it. Obviously I wasn’t that happiest after being told on the phone we could register it and now being told that we can’t… after we had bought the car!
Now this left us in a tricky situation, having a car that technically we don’t own as we cannot register the car in our name and we can’t sell either! We went to the top and spoke to the head of the PA DMV and explained the situation but he wouldn’t budge. I mean we cant be the first people wanting to buy a car in the USA that aren’t citizens – apparently in PA we were!
So we spent ages trying to think of other alternatives, we could register it in another state with more relaxed rules but we still ran into problems – the only thing to do was to get someone to register it for us in their name. So we decided to ask around.
Times Square

Times Square


In the mean time our next day off came around and me, Jenkins, Gez, Vicki and Katie decided to drive into NYC for the day. Now it would be an early morning (6am) but we thought it would be worth it. Now it was a bar night the day before which means most of camp get a lift down to the local bar – knowing that we had to get up early and drive to the city in the morning we thought we would go out just for one… OK, that was never going to happen. 2am came and I finally made it into bed. Not great when my alarm was set for 5:30am!
Day off in Times Square

Day off in Times Square


So we all got up, just a little tired from the night before and drove to NYC in the camps Camry (Toyota Camry), now I emphasize the car because anyone that works there will know the state that this car is in… no air con, passenger door doesn’t open… you get the picture but it’s a car non the least so we set off to NYC. Now I booked a parking lot right next to times square so we could be in the center and we parked up for the day. It was such a good day, we decided to do all the free stuff like Staten Island Ferry, South seaport, Brooklyn Bridge and Central Park.
NYC night out

NYC night out


By the end of the day our legs were ready to fall off – sooo much walking! We passed out in central park for an hour for a sleep before going to the Hard Rock Café for dinner before we had to leave. The Goo Goo Dolls were playing upstairs in the Hard Rock that night and we tried our hardest to get up there but no good! I would have loved to of seen them. So after a long drive back we made it back to camp shattered.
Manhattan

Manhattan


Back to the car. Now the bar maid in the local bar had agreed to register it for us, we were so happy that the trip was back on, and started to plan our trip again. We spoke to soon. Now the local pizza place and ice cream parlor is about a 10 minute drive from camp and someone borrowed the jeep to pick some people up down there via the back roads. I got a phone call informing us that they had swerved to hit a dear and that the Jeep was in a ditch. I thought it couldn’t be that bad if it was in a ditch so I drove down to see if we could get it out. Totaled was the first thought that crossed my mind… That Jeep must have been cursed! All the trouble we had with it and when we finally had it all sorted that happened. So our Jeep is now in the big scrapheap in the sky… RIP. So my one piece of advice from this situation: If you are going to buy a car to travel for a few months in the USA and don’t have a long visa, DON’T!
Good bye Jeep

Good bye Jeep


So camp was starting to wind down, it was getting very close to the end. Staff were busy planning trips and the kids knew it was almost time for them to go home. We still had one day off left to go. The local fair was in Honesdale the town nearby so we decided to go. It was a really good day out, we went on all the rides (yes, even me), won goldfish saw all the different stalls – it was a good final day off. Although, about eight of us had won fish… so it was a quick trip to Walmart to pick up a fish bowl and food. It turned out being a waste of money as seven of them died the following day! Although one still lives on to this day…
Cursed from the start!

Cursed from the start!


So that was it! The end of camp – I cant believe it went so fast. It was another amazing year – my fourth in total. I have to admit when I went in 2005 I never thought Id be back so many times, but I suppose I never thought Id be travelling the world back then either. But I have one more year left in me that’s for sure, I ve decided to finish my travels here next year after my Asia trip is finished. I would recommend doing a camp season to anyone, you meet people from all over the world and like me you will meet friends for life.
Wayne County Fair

Wayne County Fair


So I ended back in NYC 12 days before my flight to Dominican Republic (oh yeah, going back out there to see Katherine and for my birthday – could be worse places to spend it!) I stayed a couple of nights in a hotel in the city as a treat after living camp life for so long and then stayed up in White Plains in Sheldon’s apartment as he was out of town for a week and kindly let me use his place. Im not sure what I will do over the next 10 days but Im sure I will get up to something.
NYC night out

NYC night out


So my next entry will be from the Dominican Republic!

Posted by dezmondos 11:46 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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