From Crowdy Head to Sydney - Our Adventures Begin

Trip Start May 14, 2009
Trip End Jun 15, 2009

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Where I stayed
Sydney Airport International
Sydney Airport International Hotel

Flag of Australia  , New South Wales,
Friday, May 15, 2009

We waved goodbye to our beloved Crowdy Head (and our beloved cat family), some 350 kms north of Sydney on the Mid North Coast of New South Wales, Australia and headed off by train from Taree to Sydney where we stayed the night at the Sydney Airport International Hotel before our flight the next day to Shanghai, China.

Like all of the first legs of our travels, this part is always one of the most exciting. And like our previous travels this one was no different. Except perhaps that I (Alan was quite relaxed about it all) had more doubts and trepidation than ever before about our proposed travel itinerary. Well, it sure was exciting....

"What on earth were we doing going to Pakistan?" came to my mind many times during our travels. Some months earlier the media revealed the shocking news of the Sri Lankan cricket team being targeted by Taliban insurgents. Then chillingly, a Polish engineer was kidnapped in Pakistan and beheaded. And just before we left Australia almost every news article included bombings in the Swat Valley, Lahore and Peshawar. Thanks no doubt to strong arm US pressure, the Pakistan government had just decided to take on the Taliban resulting in some 1.5 million refugees fleeing the North Western Frontier Province and the Swat Valley. And Taliban had just declared war on all of Pakistan, demanding the evacuation of Islamabad, Lahore and Peshawar. What a great time to visit, I thought.

The world economic collapse didn't help our Australian dollar value and just for good measure, Swine Flu was just declared as a pandemic by the World Health Authority. "What a great time to travel anywhere" I moaned to Alan.

Well, there was no use in worrying at this stage. We were committed and we were off on an amazing adventure!
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Barbara Cail on

This is an exciting and inspirational piece of writing. I was able to travel all the way using my imagination because the story is so descriptive and beautifully supported with photos. I recommend it to anyone planning to be an adventurer and exploring these historical locations.

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