Log in

No account? Create an account
Are we there yet? [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Are We There Yet?

[ website | Sign up for news letter ]
[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

[Links:| Alexander's msn space Alexander @ Hyves Nasty News Nasty @ Hyves ]

New Weblog [Jun. 8th, 2006|09:39 am]
Are We There Yet?

This Weblog has moved to:


Please continue there :-)
linkpost comment

The split-up [May. 27th, 2006|08:10 pm]
Are We There Yet?
[Current Location |Byron Bay and Brisbane]
[mood |excitedexcited]

The Split-up

First the important news:

Alex is going to SUSSEX UNIVERSITY next 3 years. After months of applying and waiting, friday may 26 was the outcome. He will be in holland in august for a couple of weeks and from england he can easily go to amsterdam once in a while to meet everybody who's there.

After Sydney Boris joined the Broers. Driving north for a while they arrived at Seal Rocks, just to say hi to Brenda who worked on a surfcamp at this beautiful beach. Saying hi can take a long while, as the three of them got stuck there, working as well. For 3 weeks they prepared brekki, lunch and dinner, cleaned and partied. All this for free food, accommodation and of course free surf lessons. They and all the other so called helpers had an amazing time.

But Boris got a bit bored and left for Byron Bay. Four days later Alex followed him, this would mean the first split-up with Ernesto, ehmm.. Melvin his new name, who wanted to stay for another week. Alex would wait for him in byron bay an work for a bit. To bad he got bored again in two days, so he left byron. With Boris he hitchhiked to Bangalow an wonderful place, Billykart races were going on that day. They spent two hours there and after another hour and a half they got a ride to Brisbane.

In Brisbane they booked their Fraser Island tour, and so they kept going north. 3 days and 2 nights on the island. This beautiful largest sand Island of the world with more sand than the sahara was the destination for 25 backpackers with 3 four wheel drives, a lot of booze and the mood to party. Pictured are not going to be shown on the internet because they had two throw away cameras, but when you meet us ask for the pics because it was gorgeous.

After 3 great days on fraser it was the may 26 and alex got his even better news, !sussex!. To bad Hervey Bay was not a big party place to celebrate. Later that night Boris got the idea to go back to Brisbane. Hitchhiking 400 kilometers. The next day 4 British girls who were on their tour took them, in a Toy Story painted van, all the way to Brisbane. Alex is now deciding whether to work for Greenpeace in Brisbane or to wait for ernesto and go fruitpicking, who just arrived in Byron Bay from surfcamp.

The Narrator
link4 comments|post comment

crazy canberra [Apr. 22nd, 2006|11:23 am]
Are We There Yet?

[Current Location |Sydney]

Crazy Canberra

So the guys picked up Brenda from Melbourne after spending a couple of days around Phillip Island, and set for Sydney.

First adventure of the trip was a hike through Wilson's Promonotory. Very well prepared (NOT!!!!) they slid on their hiking boots (aka sneakers torn down to bits) stocked up their power food (bread, peanut butter and nutella, they have no small camping stove) and packed their tent (one leaking tent which was too small for the twin air matress).

All day long it was beautiful weather and as they we're hiking, time seemed to be on their side. They started a bit late, but walked on in a good pace. Until the track changed. It became a bit more climbing and knocking away branches and plants and as it got later during the day it also started raining. They didn't make it to the camp they booked that night, but hell, who cares. So in the rain they set up their tent and blew up the air matress. It kinda fit in the tent, but that's saying much. It made the tent leak even more and after 30 minutes Ernesto (sleeping in the middle) realized he started to feel the ground through the matress. Brenda and Alexander were still in denial (about everything really: not hungry, not cold, not wet, not on the ground, not feeling as a failure). It was one of those nights you are awake, thinking 'they' will find three dead backpackers in a tent the next morning, or at least a headline in the news paper: "Helicopter Trauma team rescues three dutch fools from near death."

Fortunately with a good dose of humor and denying physics the morning came. The hike took it's toll, but the views were definately worth it. (Again no pics this time)

After this they followed their trip through the wonderfull coast of Victoria and eventually arrived in the wicked, awesome, lively, joyfull Australian Capital Territory (ACT) with the capital of OZ: Canberra. This city was built in the early 1900's with one purpose in mind. Building a boring hometown for all the politicians as far away from any accessible highways as possible so they will only bore eachother and will not be distracted by anything nice while governing the country. Nothing more to say about it, they stayed for two hours of which one in the supermarket.

The next morning they woke up with the most beautiful view in Morton's National Park in New South Wales, and continue's their trip to Sydney. The coast south of Sydney is less travelled than the coast north, without any good reason. It's beautful, and weatherwise a much better destination than the great ocean road in this time of the year.

Four nights in Sydney. Alexander picked up Boris from the airport and caught up with Zsa Zsa who was in Sydney already. (Boris and Zsa Zsa are two of Alexander's highschool friends). Yesterday Brenda said good bye, unfortunately, because they had a really good time with her. 24hr jokes a day, zero boring or serious moments in a week.

And of course (as usual) in Sydney there's more people to meet than time to do it. Daniel (from NZ trip) colleages from September, friends from Christmas and all time travel buddies (e.g. Aryan). Keep in touch!

Next destination Queensland!
link4 comments|post comment

Great Ocean Road to Melbourne [Apr. 9th, 2006|10:53 pm]
Are We There Yet?

[Current Location |Melbourne]

The Great Ocean Road to Melbourne

As I said: more to come now.

So they left Mildura, on to their next adventure. Of course they didn't make enough money for this. Because fruitpicking is more like slavery. If they pay they pay an amount which only looks nice in small coins. But small coins don't look nice, so overall it's paid BADly.

Alexander did some research about the state of Victoria and the road to Melbourne. What to do and what to see. (Ernesto would of just jumped onto the high way and gone straight to his destination, only to find out what he missed there and then gone back.) The Grampians National Park being the first nice stop on the way. They drove for 40 KM, realized they didn't say bye to Paul, drove back to Mildura, said bye to Paul and finally at 1:30 in the afternoon left Mildura again. (Mildura has this Boomerang effect- although no one seems to like it, everyone goes back one or more times.)

As Paul warned already, the Grampians National Park was recently (jan/feb 2006) wiped out by a forest fire. Only the southern parts of the park would still be accessible. But being a park in Australia (where everything's huge - so the southern part of the park is maybe bigger than some european countries) and being on the road, it would still be a good place to go to.

And indeed. The northern part was black on the ground and white in the sky. Cloud and rain over a devastated park burned to the ground. Well... not to the ground. These gum trees and eucalyptis and all other ozzie native trees seem to regenerate pretty fast after a forest fire. They've been trained for centuries. Most trees had new shoots coming out on every side of the tree and grass wa growing on some spots too. Weird nature... And making the visit even better. The southern part of the park was still in tact. Only some traces of forest fires from 1999 1992 1987 etc. etc. etc.

I am skipping all the sleeping in the van parts because it will only be about how they brush their teeth and make up their bed and cook their dinner. Which is not interesting. Have a look at yourself tonight and imaging doing that in a van. That's what it's like.

So they went on to Portland. Not on the Great Ocean Road, but on the coast and according to the Lonely Planet Australia 2004 a place worth visiting. And it was. Massive waves breaking on the beautiful coast at the petrified forest and visits to the weirdest 'museums' they've ever been to. (Culture!!!!!) They learned about coast guards in the 1880's, hunting whales and when they were almost extinct, protecting whales and about the history of the oldest town in Victoria, Portland. Who was the mayor and what tools the dentist used 70 years ago.

After that they set direction towards the Great Ocean Road. Now I understand the name sounds a bit corny, but ask the boys, when you drive there, you know why it's called the Great Ocean Road. Not because it's on the Great Ocean, because it's not on the Pacific. It's actually along the Southern Ocean, facing Antarctica. But just because the Road is Great. Even with rain and wind it's still beautiful. The Children's Cove, The Grotto and the Twelve Apostles are all along a rugged yellow lime stoned coast, where waves meters high crash into the coast line. The current postcards don't resemble the real coast because the water has changed it. E.g. one of the twelve apostles collapsed july 3rd 2005 (coincidentally the same moment ernesto collapsed in the vondelpark @ marleen's birthday, after partying too much on his own birthday - and her's)

After a certain point the limestone coast made way for rainforests (where strangely enough it stopped raining), light houses and waterfalls. All this making it a beauty of a trip ending in a city which was completely unlike they exptected it to be. Not that they did have any expectations, but they were amazed to, again like before, find another metropole in the middle of nowhere.

They drove into Melbourne at night time, so the with-lights-decorated-bridge welcomed them into this capital of trends, new wave avandgarde, hip stylish lifestyle and other fashionable things that don't even have a name yet. Melbourne is so stylish it got stuck in the future. Everyone is so up to date in their own style that tomorrow's trends are out of fashion. Even the people stuck in the 70's or 80's themes wear things that were very avandgarde and ahead their time then. Here and their time portals warp people back from the 21st century to have a look if their style is hip enough and everybody is walking in and out of art galleries like they are checking out other people's stuff who are checking out their stuff. Even in this cheap internet cafe somewhere in a back street where junkies walk around the computers are better and faster than in most business centers and the junkies and prostitutes outside are dressed in style. But because no one has time to send all the fashion to the outside world, because they are too busy following the trends, no one else in the world know's about this. E.g. while typing this message my pants went out of style and back into style 3 times and I need to buy new shoes. But that's just because they're worn out.

Other than that, the boys met up again with some 'old' friends, who they've known all their life in Australia (since september) Emma, Brenda and Matt and will be heading up to Canberra, Sydney and Brisbane soon.

But first they need to taste the new pizza topping someone just came up with.

Ps. sorry for the long descriptions, I'd rather upload the photo's but apparently it's currently not hip to have image processing software on internet cafe computers. Pictures will come though.

Bye bye
The Narrator
link2 comments|post comment

Mildura [Apr. 5th, 2006|10:33 pm]
Are We There Yet?

[Current Location |Mildura]


Hi all, it's the narrator here again. After New Zealand the boys flew to Sydney, where they met up with some 'old' friends and picked up their new van. The new van's a Nissan Urvan and is called Nissi (or Nissy or Nissie or Nissey - that depends on who's writing and probably whether it's US/UK/AU/NZ/NL english)

But that's not the point of course. The point is .. not relevant here...
They found out on the freeway of Sydney (on their way to Mildura - 1000 kilometers west) that the fifth gear wasn't working...

Just wasn't there.
Fifth gear was like neutral.

Kind of a bummer, because also the high beams, kilometer odometer and speedo weren't working. Well... keep a smile on your face, take a clock and look at the road signs and the map, and you can kinda figure out how fast you're going. While trucks and roadtrains were overtaking with a lot higher speed then they, they calculated that their average speed was 60kmph (for US-ers that's about 40 mph) and their top speed 70 kmph... it took 'em three days to get to Mildura.

Their they met up with Aryan, Jennica, Evelina en Paul. Had a few beers, a few weeks of boring fruitpicking and a lot of sun. And eventually even rain! Which seems almost like a miracle in the outback.

Ernesto passed his driver's license test. Alexander had his 20th birthday. Paul got back to motorcrossing and got 3rd, but will be first soon. And all the other's have their own weblogs you can follow. (Aryan, Jennica and Evelina - and all other backpackers - please reply with the URL to your weblog so the rest can find them!)

For those really interested in what they did. They picked oranges, pruned orange trees, picked grapes and yelled at their bosses. And drove tractors. Probably the best part of all...

Then they left and more about that later...
(only a little bit later... more like now..)
linkpost comment

North Island [Jan. 27th, 2006|04:15 pm]
Are We There Yet?
[mood |cheerfulcheerful]
[Location |3500 iPod songs]

North Island

Finally w're in New Zealand, they thought after a hard 3 weeks of partying. It was time for the beautifull landscapes of Middle Earth NZ. They w're gonna buy a car, but after seeing a van to cheap to let go, they bought it him, the Bumbelbee (named after their first hitchhiker). 

Auckland was not that pretty, but after seeing the first waterfall in Whangarei everything changed. While saving themselfs a lot of money by cooking in hostels/campsites ( 0,-$ )and than leaving to find a parkingspot to sleep ( 0,-$ ) they visited the dolphins at bay of islands and a beautifull beach near doubtless bay, though it surtenly is a bay, captain Cook said it was doubtless a bay few hundred years ago. Before picking up Emma and Annelien in Auckland they went to Kauri Forest, with trees over 2000 years old and 5 meter thick.

Going south now it got a bit thighter living with 4 people in a van, but the country not less pretty. They went to Raglan, NZ BEST surfing town, saw the FIRST glowworms in Waitamo Caves and pretended to be Hobbits in Hobbiton, at the
ONLY remaining Lord of the Rings set. Seriously, THIS is how every atraction in NZ is promoted. Like the HIGHEST Bungi and the TALLEST hangbridge.

But now something of more importance they arived in Rotorua, Queenstown of north Island. The whole city smells like ernesto roted eggs, but you can do some cool stuff over there: Go to a Maori Cultere evening, very nice. See Mudpools, by the way that's why the whole city smells. Go luging, like karting but without engine, you just go downhill and ZORBING, what?? Yeah ZORB. You go inside a plastic ball, nes and alex went together, and they roll down a hill. It's crazy but fun.

Still their job had to be done, and getting much closer to their target, it got harder. The Tongariro Crossing, one of NZ great walks, passing Mt. Ngaurahu, better known as Mt. DOOM. Almost reaching it nes found out he forgot the ring (: so everybody sent money cause we have to go back to NZ next summer :) 

After the 4 friends had hard time driving the Forgotten World Highway and mist heaps of scenic things because of driving during the night. Also Mt Taranaki a vulcano at the coast, was not a big succes rainfall spoiled their stay. Maori tellings say Mt.Taranaki and Mt. Reapehu had a battle, the first lost and was sent to the coast. Who wouldn't belief that?

Arriving in Wellington it was time to split up, but not before nes had his first accident. This made the only day in wellington a day of finding car wreckers and trying to fix Bumbelbee. 

Goodbye Emma and Annelien, Goodbye North Island

the Narrator

link1 comment|post comment

Last Days in New Zealand [Feb. 20th, 2006|04:03 pm]
Are We There Yet?


Last days in New Zealand

We've done it! We sold the van today. We weren't really sure if we could, cos it needs some repairs and everyone sells their car in Christchurch. So lotta competition and not a very good van.
Two locals bought the van, to use for weekend trips.

The damage of New Zealand.

48 Days and Nights
1 Van (named Hommel)
1 Rental Car
Hommel 5439 Kilometers
Rental 1751 Kilometers
Total 7100 Kilometers (we don't understand how we drove exaclty that round number, but we did) - 4440 miles
804 Liter (223 US Gallons) of petrol
6 liters of motor oil
Average of 60 kph 118 hours of driving

31 nights of free overnights sleeping in van (no hostels or campsites)
5 hours of IPod playing per day, total 240 hours
total of 36 hours waiting on italian friend (taking pictures, taking shoes off, putting them back on, drinking coffee with snickers or getting cash from ATM)
(then again, he waiting 4 days on us, to arive in the south island)
8 tumbles in 30 seconds zorbing - what's that?
2 x 134 meters (2 x 440 feet) bungy jump
12 luge rides - what's a luge!?!?!?!*&#@
6 unexpected running-into-s of renate and roel on both islands

1194 foto's
4 hours of film

5.427.881.292 sandflies (little buggers)

New pictures in the image gallery!!!
  • South Island
  • Road Signs
  • A few more in the North Island

    Update you later!

  • linkpost comment

    The South Island [Feb. 14th, 2006|12:45 am]
    Are We There Yet?

    Hi All,

    So far we've travelled a lot in New Zealand. We went through the North Island first. With Emma and Annelien. All the pictures are on our image gallery.
    Alex will tell you more about that later (won't you alex?)

    Anyways... when we got to the South Island, Daniele joined us in our van "Hommel". We met him in Sydney a couple a months ago and now we are doing the South Island with him. We started at the Abel Tasman National Park (just after Nelson, which doesn't deserve much notice). We kayaked the first day and hiked for two more days. Beautiful place that park.

    After the park we drove to Nelsons Lakes, walked a bit and took the road to the west coast. We stopped everywhere along the road to do nice little things. The next day we arived at Punakaki (or whatever it's called) and visited the pancake rocks and the blowholes, which didn't really do much that day.

    We drove through Greymouth and further to the Franz Josef Glacier and the Fox Glacier. Very popular sites and beautiful walks. We followed the road along the coast towards Haast. When we took the Haast Pass over the mountain the next day Hommel started to sound funny (not ha-ha funny). And the automatic gearbox started acting even (less ha-ha) funnier.

    We joined the AA (partner of the ANWB) in Wanaka and they came to help us. He told us the ATF fluid was completely dried up and if we were lucky the problem would be solved by filling it up. I kinda had the feeling we already wrecked the gearbox.
    So we did, and yes, Hommel drove off again, but unfortunately with weird shaking in low gear and heaps a more problems along the road. But we made it to Queenstown where we booked into a campsite.

    Queenstown is the town of extreme sports. As soon as you drive into town, you are welcomed by 3 skydivers cyrcling over the town and tons of adds for bungy, rafting, sling shots, swings, swoops luge or whatever they came up with now. Alexander and I did the Nevis Bungy Jump. The highest bungy in New Zealand and probably second highest in the world. 134 meters...... very exciting.

    Daniele and us decided to rent a car and put Hommel up for sale. With the car we left for Milford Sounds. Milford Sounds and the Abel Tasman National park must be the two most beautiful places we've seen. This small town is the north end of the fiord lands. Only accessible by boat or walking tracks. No roads lead to the rest of the fiords.

    After an increadibly beautiful time we drove south. Along the east site of the fiordlands, passing huge lakes, to the south coast. At the southcoast we found two very nice spots. Monkey Island (Alexander was very happy to see his family here) where we spend the night. And the next day, Curio Bay. This hidden secret of New Zealand is home to the very rare yellow eyed penguin and the hector dolfins. So the next morning we took our swim shorts to the beach and started swimming towards the dolfins, in ice cold water. This is the South Ocean with water coming from the Antarctics. It hurts your skin swimming here and after 3 minutes your body starts feeling very hot (somehow). But all this is ignored as soon as the Hector Doflins aproach you. They will swim around you and jump in the waves breaking on the beach. Increadible how they are curious and come towards you. And no 120 dollar trip to book either. Just jump in.

    We followed the coast up to Nugget point and started driving to Dunedin when I received a phonecall. A potential buyer for Hommel. We drove straight back to Queenstown (4 hours). The next morning another guy called. Unfortunately both didn't wanna buy our Hommel. So we drove Hommel to Dunedin with Daniel folling us in the rental car and picking up hitchhikers along the road. When we got to Dunedin we parked the van and took the car to the Otago peninsula. Just off the city some hills and cliffs arise in the ocean (east coast by now). The only colony of a type of albatrosses on the main land here. All the others live at sea on small islands. And at 10 PM we went penguin spotting again. This time the blue penguin.

    We booked a hostal for tonight. We will continue our travels tomorrow. We hope Hommel makes it to Christchurch eventually.

    For now, all a good night. As soon as I get the chance I will upload the pictures of the South Island too. They are gorgeous.

    link1 comment|post comment

    Beautiful New Zealand [Jan. 9th, 2006|03:27 pm]
    Are We There Yet?

    [Location |whangarei]

    Beautiful New Zealand

    New Zealand is beautiful... so far and we haven't seen the incredible part yet...

    And we bought a VAN!!!! Looks like shit, rolls like a tank... we pimped it yesterday...

    more pics on hyves

    bye bye

    (the narrator is on holidays!)
    link8 comments|post comment

    The surprises of New Zealand [Jan. 6th, 2006|03:09 pm]
    Are We There Yet?

    [mood |tiredtired]
    [Location |Auckland]

    The Surprises of New Zealand

    Januari 5th 01:00 (1AM), after 3 weeks of partying, non-stop drinking and lack of sleep, Ernesto thought he could catch some sleep and have some rest before they fly to New Zealand. Alex walks into the room...

    Alex: Yo, Nes, Shall I check what time we're flying on the 7th? Like morning or evening... or well, don't worry i'll check it tomorrow.

    Ernesto: Good idea.. check it now.

    Alex is going through the paperwork...

    A: Ehmmmmmm... Nes, I was gonna make a joke, but ehmmmmmm, we're flying tomorrow morning at 9:20

    E: What?... can we change to booking?

    Alex makes a phonecall to the booking number and comes back

    A: Only office hours dude... we've gotta fly tomorrow...

    A & E: Oooooooh noooooooooooooooooo

    So they start packing their backs, though the night. Drunk Hans tries his mental support... (hehehe..) and stays up till 6:20 when they have their shuttle bus pickup at the hostel.

    They sleep a little in the plane and the bus to the hostel in Auckland. They check in. Ernesto goes to the toilet and Alex sees a woman hanging from a balcony across the road.

    A: Nes nes! Get your phone, call the police....

    So they run downstairs to the reception of the hostel and then outside. An other man from the hostel (who's been an ambulance driver for 15 years) stops the trafic and tells Ernesto to start en keep talking to the woman. So there he is, in stead of dreaming about flowers, beaches and beatiful women in Sydney, he's talking to a suicidal junky in Auckland.

    It takes the police (after they arive) an hour and a half to talk the woman out of it. Finally the help her to step off the railing back on to the balcony. That deserved a Whopper cheese meal at the Burger King.

    They just slept for 15 hours, but still are not really able to walk and talk clearly. More sleep is coming!!!

    Wish them luck!

    The Narrator

    link6 comments|post comment

    [ viewing | most recent entries ]
    [ go | earlier ]