I woke up early to Skype family and friends and felt as if I were at home with them except for the huge temperature difference. Today I had the honor of cleaning a couple toilets at the hostel so try to contain your jealousy. While cleaning the fridge, I did not find the same culinary bounty as I had the day before but I did manage to uncover two forgotten pale ales that needed a home; being the abiding citizen of the world that I am, I welcomed them with open arms. Per usual, I completed my two and a half hours in a sweat storm, not to be outdone by any challenger. During the afternoon, I got a doctor’s appointment and completed some further trip planning. Apparently the Tropic Days hostel and its sister hostel would be having a staff BBQ night. Trying to mix things up, I bought ingredients for a salad I would prepare. I used techniques my mom had taught me to make an Italian salad of cucumbers, fresh, ripe tomatoes, white onions, and dressing. A clear plus of this miserable heat has been fresh, quality produce seen everyday. Obviously, I had to put my own spin on it with feta, kalamata olives, carrot shavings, and lettuce. Being the newbie, it was great to meet everyone else officially. Being a big football fan, I talked to a cool Englishman about the sport and the huge differences between it and the American sports the U.S. cherishes. Possibly due to a fear of vegetables, my salad sat there lonely on the table; no worries, more for me. Talking with all of these quote unquote strangers, mainly one on one or in small groups, my confidence has soared exponentially. What a beautiful thing it is to feel comfortable in your own skin. As we joined together as one large group for quiz night, I got less talkative, less involved. As much progress as I have made, I know I have so much more to work on. Even when I am not tramping around country after country and rather stuck in one spot for awhile, I still face my fair share of challenges. Having confidence in yourself regardless of the circumstance does not come easy or overnight. These types of situations are a prime reason why I want to travel and travel longer. A short holiday in another country can broaden one’s perspective but truly immersing myself into what I am doing and isolating myself from the safety of what I know will sprout the changes and growth that I yearn for within myself. As much as I like to be philosophical, I will return to where I left off. As I have learned, the English like their quiz or trivia nights. Typically they will have these at pubs on mostly weekday nights when the atmosphere is a bit more subdued. I remember seeing them in London a couple times while I was there. The night was quite relaxed, joking around and the fact that my two beers were free didn’t hurt either. After people began leaving, I departed as well into my cave for a cool night’s sleep.
Down Under Day 37: Game of Thrones