13th December – 12th January
Flights Taken: 0
Trains Taken: 0
Buses Taken: 0
Photo’s Taken: 412
Amount Spent Overall: $936.00
Amount Spent Per a Day: $30.20
This month was the first time we have stayed in one place for a long while. For the past month we have continued working on getting our 88 days of regional work done and we have now achieved just over half way – by the end of month 4 we will be a week away from finishing! We experienced our first Aussie Christmas and New Year – despite wishing to spend Christmas on a beach and New Year in Sydney we stayed put in Waikerie. This was mostly due to the cost of leaving – we would only have been able to afford a one way ticket to Sydney and that would have left us with very little money to enjoy ourselves. The decision was not regretted everyone here was in the same boat (literally) so because of this everyone really tried to make Christmas and New Year as exciting and fun as possible, including a roast dinner for Christmas lunch and a boat party for New Year.
We may have really enjoyed our first Aussie Christmas but during this month we have seen many problems with the management of the Murray River Queen. There have been several issues where the situation has not been dealt with fairly resulting in innocent people being kicked off the boat and many of us being left disappointed by the promise of something which doesn’t happen.
Since the holiday season we have been working nonstop with one day off since New Year – our boss has been offering us extra work which is paid by the hour and not picking oranges an offer we could not refuse. Still the constant work has not been without hick ups where sitting on the side of the road at 5.30 am in the dark, in the wrong place is normal, being soaked by sprinklers before 8 am is common and getting sent home because our boss has run out of bins is expected at least once a week. All this being normal has made me realise how much of a bubble we live in here, how farfetched we are from the real world is crazy – it reminds me of days at Summer Camp in 2011 where we would call ourselves ‘camp cracked’ because we had been there so long.
What has been my favourite bit?
The holiday season on a whole was my favourite – being somewhere hot for Christmas was crazy and really hard to get my head around. I spend the build-up moaning it didn’t feel like Christmas yet on the day with everyone getting in the spirit together there was a Christmas feel to the day even if it wasn’t what we were used to. For New Year the whole boat got together and partied the night away on the top deck of the boat with a bbq and $2 punch organised by the owner of the boat. For us it was unfortunate we had to work the next morning still that didn’t stop us from bringing the New Year in, in style.
The worst part?
There is no obvious worst part of this month – it has been frustrating not getting to see anywhere new but at the same time it has been nice staying in one place and being able to unpack our bags. The running of the boat has certainly shaped a lot of the dramas this month – with work being cut down to 3 days a week only for us to kick up a fuss and 3 days later we were all back to normal.
What is in store for next month?
The current plan is to stay here and continue racking up the days of regional work however as always our plan is completely open and if the boy gets an events job in the city then we will head there. I can only imagine the amount of drama that can continue to happen over the next month on the Murray River Queen.