‘DREAM BIG BABY!’ 14/10/17

A dream without a goal is just a wish” 

A rather hectic weekend at the High-Way Inn inspired this blog entry. With the departure of some of our troops.. we were a few men down. A soldier never leaves a comrade behind and sure enough we all pulled together and attempted to take on the masses that swept across our little home. I did me, I did Stevie, Stevie did Kath, Kath didn’t do anyone cause she was away… Ciara did everyone.. and we all did multiple people.. sorry, roles… to keep the show on the road!! Between Sunday through to Monday we had nearly 2,000-3,000 Solar Racers pass through our doors. Every 2 years Australia hosts The World Solar challenge, where teams from all around the globe come to challenge the norms and travel the outback in a vehicle (which they have built from scratch) powered solely by the sun. I chase the sun too… but for tanning purposes.

SOLAR KIDS

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We almost ran out of fuel, water, ice and above all.. energy! They have been the 2 craziest days I have worked since I started. But we got through it and lived to tell the tale! (Thanks to everyone for doing each other). Inspired by the Sun kids and their passion to follow their dreams.. I began to think a little about dreams in general. Not the cheese-dreams I have at night- the dreams we have as little humans here on this planet. Things we want to do, see, feel, achieve, experience and live. They can be big and bold or small and petite- no matter what size.. a dream is still a dream. Which got me thinking about a little quote a wise rose once told me “A dream without a goal is just a wish”.

 

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It’s all well and good to sit and wish the day away. “I wish I had.. that car, those shoes, that holiday, her hair, his hummus, confidence, a degree, a boyfriend, support, creativity, a healthy lifestyle, love, cheese”.. whatever! Without the necessary goals in place.. your dream will remain just that.. a wish! Those little Sun Kids made me think about my own dreams in the making… and the dreams that have come before that have manifested. Dreaming big requires a whole lot of heart and sometimes in the present moment it’s hard to imagine how you are ever going to succeed in achieving this dream, which can sometimes seem unobtainable. Mainly because we are only at the starting line yet we’re trying to visualise ourselves at the finish line from our current position. This isn’t wrong.. but it’s only the beginning. We cant jump into one end of the swimming pool and expect to arrive at the other without doggy paddling our way there. My preferred method is breast-stroke however.

Using the Sun Kids as an example..
1. Define and clarify your dream(s).
2. Take necessary actions/steps to make your dream(s) a reality.

A good example of this is my trip that I made to South America. This little dream began in the mind of my soul-sista Jazzy. Christmas 2016 Jazzy was travelling Australia, she then clarified her dream and decided she wanted to explore South America. Her dream came out of her head and into her mouth and she shared her dream with me. Her dream then became my dream and together we worked to make our dream a reality. Dual-dreaming- dunno if thats a thing?.. well it is now! Although, when I think back to the starting point.. the dream appeared impossible. Why? I couldn’t envisage myself saving the necessary funds I needed to make this trip a reality. I also feared leaving the country and missing out on possible acting work that might come my way. Beginners doubts, I like to call them. Although doubts still remained, I pushed ahead and began to take little steps towards achieving my goal. 1: I opened a savings account which didn’t get much action for the first few months but it was a necessary step forward in the right direction. 2: Two Jobs – I worked my cute little butt off. 3: Talking about the trip: “Hey Jazzy, which countries will we go to?” “Hey Caoimh, check out this amazing floating hostel in the middle of the ocean in Colombia!”. Anyway, you get my flow. We made it happen.. and by god it was the trip of a life time!!

The Mush Twins

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Right now I am living the dream that followed- Australian mate! That dream manifested in about 48hours between deciding, applying for visa and booking flights! Come to Australia, get work, save and then EXPLORE. It’s the EXPLORE part that needs clarifying on my part. My dream tank is half full and I’m currently deciding upon how to refuel it… funny I should use the metaphor of refuelling, seeing as I’m living in a fuel station. Diesel, Pulp, Unleaded… so many options. Well I know for certain that I will be basking in Bali sunshine for Christmas and New Years but from there I have no flights to anywhere. The world is my oyster as they say (I prefer mussels.. but anyway).. I need to put the 2 step dream-plan in place. 1: Define and Clarify Dreams 2: Take necessary actions/steps to make my dream(s) a reality.
                                     DREAM BIG BABY!!!

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‘HOLIDAY ROMANCE’ 2/10/17

 

And before you jump the gun… NO! I haven’t fallen in love in the outback. I am ‘in love’ with the outback, but that’s for another days sonnet. We’ve probably all had our fair share of holiday romances. Flirts, hurts, kept their t-shirts.. gifts of bling, a fling, a unexpected heart-ping, ehh where’s-the-ring?.. kinda thing! I’d like to take the concept of ‘holiday romance’ and flip it over on to it’s arse here for a moment for the purpose of this post. Enter my new concept of holiday romance: SOMETHING WE LOVE THAT IS TEMPORARY AND THEN IT’S GONE. And to avoid confusion.. these ‘romances’ I’m referring to are not necessarily just with people (although if they are, I don’t mean romantic-mushy pea- smoochy smush smush kinda stuff: more so, bonds, or bromances or sistasledge connections with others). Stepping away from the traditional idea of a ‘holiday romance’ with a person, these ‘romances’ can be with objects, places, situations, circumstances.. basically anything that you like and anything that makes you feel good and happy.. but is usually short-lived.

Romance with lips and hearts 

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The other week I was granted 3 wishes and on top of that… 2 WHOLE DAYS OFF!! So I decided to pack up my wishes and put them aside (I’ll save them for a rainy day. WET SEASON IS COMING). I hit the long, long, straight, straight road to Mataranka. Back to Territory Manor where my outback experience first began. As I figuratively mentioned in a previous post.. ‘getting out of the house for a bit’ is important.. so you can only imagine how I felt to be genuinely getting out of the house for a bit. I had a wonderful time back in The Manor. Caught up with pals, had pizza, drank wine, ate cheese, went to the springs, tried to find the fresh water croc who moved in 2 weeks ago (no luck, sadly). Relaxed!

Croc, courtesy of ranger Neil 

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Upon my return to the HiWay Inn, my heart felt a little sad. It’s never fun to go back to work after a trip away. My holiday romance was over. Not just one.. but many a romance you see! I know.. I’m a flirt! Flirting with the springs, flirting with cheese (I love cheese), and downright, obscene flirting with the calm and peaceful surroundings that is Territory Manor. It’s always hard to say goodbye or to let go of something you love or something you enjoy. My inner-kid-Caoimh cries when the romance is gone. Big kid-Caoimh always knows it going to be okay.. but inner-kid-Caoimh always feels a little ping of loss.

For those who love cheese and dreams 

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Although it’s coming into wet season, we have been particularly busy here in the HighWay Inn and all our rooms are pretty much booked out for the next few weeks. So much so, I had to move rooms. I had been occupying a backpacker room, not originally intended for staff but because there are so many of us on the team there was no staff rooms available. Again, another holiday romance- with a room haha!! Having lived here now for just over 1 month, I had made my little backpacker bat cave my own. I had settled in nicely and was enjoying my space and comfort. TIME TO MOVE. “I like my room, I don’t want to move, I like it here” said little inner-kid-Caoimh. That’s when Big-kid-Caoimh stepped in to reassure my little self that everything is going to be okay and this little ‘holiday romance’ will pass. And sure enough it did. I like my new room now.. it’s no penthouse suite in the Four Seasons Hotel, but it’s my little abode… for now. I’ve made it my own and out of that has blossomed a new ‘holiday romance’. There’s always a new romance to replace the last.. but if we keep trying to flirt with the last romance.. we might miss the new one passing by (and it could be super cuuuuute).

My new power station pad

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Pondering my new take on ‘holiday romances’ I now feel better equipped: mentally and emotionally prepared for the ‘holiday romances’ to come. Which essentially refers to- be prepared ‘for change’. Because in it’s essence a ‘holiday romance’ can not be ‘a holiday romance’ if there is no change present. A holiday romance only becomes a holiday romance when something changes or finishes or leaves.. which, when I think about it.. is pretty much everything in life. Hmmmm. Food for thought… and thoughts on food? I made guacamole the other day! That’s a holiday romance.. cause I love it and it’s gonna be gone once I get my hands on it. But hey! I can make more guac. And I can continue to make more romances. This is going to be one heck of a romantic life….. mmmmmm love! Sure no better woman than Caoimhe Cassanova.
My Recipe of the Day: Embrace each holiday romance and when the time comes.. be ready to pack up that bathing suit, kiss Danny Zuko goodbye, put on that pink ladies jacket and head back to Rydell Highschool. “Cause this year we’re seniors and were gonna rule the school”.
If you have no idea what I’m talking about… go watch GREASE! THIS IS WHERE HOLIDAY ROMANCE WAS BORN . Youtube: Summer Nights- Grease

UPDATE: I shouldn’t have unpacked at all.. I’ll be moving rooms again. I think it’s actually to the Four Seasons this time.
More holiday romances: today is the day that some of our crew leave the High Way Inn. Stef, Sean, Dave, Babs, Clem, Siobhan, Marcella… gonna miss you kids! Orla and Fraser.. bring me back a Toblerone.

Kids

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“IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS” 18/9/17

IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS” 18/9/17

We’ve all had days where we remain housebound for quite some time. Duvet days, Game of Throne marathon days, Netflix and chill with bae days, self inflicted sick days, or just plain old eat the house out of all the food days. Out here in the outback, I live, eat, work, sleep, rave, repeat – all within the compound of the High Way Inn. I work pretty much everyday, so even getting “out of the house” for a couple of hours isn’t easy. Having a car would open up some escape opportunities but even with a wander wagon I’m limited by the sheer volume of kilometres it takes to get anywhere. Therefore, I must provide for myself the necessary moments of ‘me-time’ to give myself the illusion of ‘getting out of the house’ for a bit. ‘Caoimh-time’, so to speak. Little things that make me tick ✔️

Writing being one of my passions- I am happy to have time here to sit down and spiel and write about whats on my mind. Having planned to have started this travel blog 6 months ago in South America (that went well haha), I’m delighted now that I have the dedication to sit myself down and close my mouth for once and focus on pen to paper (or in this case, fingers to ipad). Sitting on my porch, sipping on my flat white (you don’t know how happy I am to have a barista coffee machine here) and typing away is one of my favourite things to do… after professional gift gabbing of course.

The other week was quite eventful in fact… as ‘eventful’ goes down here. Not only did I get my first ever ride in a chopper.. all 50 seconds of it was pretty epic (as I said, if you don’t ask.. you won’t fly). We also had a delightful afternoon watching the horses being trained. Kim, my boss has at least a dozen horses here at the High Way Inn which she trains on a daily basis. My beauty of a Belgian friend Clem, was saddled up too and took a ride around the paddock.. I mean, the horse was saddled, not Clem! I was just on onlooker but perhaps I will ask for bareback session some day.. well, maybe not bareback.. probably strapped in tight (Again, if I don’t ask, I won’t ride). I’ve got the hat, all I need now is a pair of assless leather chaps so I look the part ; )

GET IN ZE CHOPPA!!

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CLEM & WINNIE

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I was pleasantly surprised to be given a FULL day off last Sunday! Sunday funday! I actually left the compound for the entire afternoon and went with some friends 7km down the road to The Daly Waters pub. Quite a famous spot out this way, where those passing through stop to refuel, rethink, eat, drink and swim. They have a delightful pool area, where I basked in the sunshine all afternoon- wine in hand, of course! Joined by Ash- one of the lovely Irish staff members at the Daly Waters I took a moment to appreciate this little slice of freedom. It’s amazing how one afternoon off can feel like a mini weekend getaway! It’s no Bali.. but hey.. it’s my outback Bali.

Ready for ridin’

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The Daly Waters Pub

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Often in life we feel stuck. Stuck in a job, a location, a situation- where we’d rather not be. We can feel like we’re playing out someone else’s game, that we’re not calling the shots in our own lives and we’re not doing the things we really want to do. We feel boxed in by external forces: pressures from family, friends or our jobs or lack of resources. We feel we are denied of our birth right to ‘choose’ what is best for us. The thing is though, we always have a CHOICE. It’s about changing a mindset and taking your power back. Once you choose, back up your choice with good reasoning. You can choose to look at things differently.. for example. “I have to work in the outback for 3/4 months. This little explorer is at standstill, longing for adventure” or “I have chosen to work in the outback for 3/4 months. My hard work here will fuel my explorers tank”. I also have a CHOICE to leave any day I want (I don’t want to leave) but that’s just an example.

When a choice is made, take ownership. Own it babez!! You do you. It may not be your ‘ideal’ choice which is why it’s important to keep choosing. A large life choice might not be exactly what you want right now, but it’s all the little day-to-day choices in between that keep you ticking. Choose to have ‘me-time’, choose to go on a little adventure- even if it’s just into your back garden. Choose to have 15 minutes to yourself and start a new book. Choose to go out and have a drink with your friend. Choose to turn up the bass and blast out your favourite beats. As the saying goes.. “It’s the little things in life”. Maths isn’t my strong point.. but I’m pretty sure loads of little things can equal one big great thing.

Formula: {Little Thing} x {Little Thing} x {Little Thing} x 1,000,000000 = 1 GR8T LIFE

“YOU DO YOU…I’LL DO ME” 14/9/17

You do You…I’ll do Me” 14/9/17

Seeing as I’m going to be stationary here in Daly Waters for the next few months.. I can’t do much exploring in a geographical sense. I will however, continue to explore on a personal level. This week I have been contemplating a little phrase. So, working behind a counter you meet all sorts of people. All types of conversations- the good, the not so good, the weird and wonderful and the strange. Some days can be eventful and some days drift by effortlessly. From bars at home, to bars in South America and Ozzy bars, I’ve seen a witnessed it all. There’s always a joke to be had and a song to sing to. Cut to: my favourite joke catch phrase at the moment.. “Look, you do you.. then you do me.. and then we can all just do each other”. I didn’t just pluck this naughty joke out of thin air.. this joke developed after I had offered a friend some advice, not my advice exactly- but I found myself reiterating the words “Look you do you”. Which stems from the old wise saying “You do you.. and I’ll do me” (No idea where it comes from, or if it even comes from anywhere or if it’s even an old saying but sure look.. we’ll go with old old Ancient Greek man said it). My understanding of this statement is that we should just focus on ourselves, on being ourselves and not be concerned with what other people or doing or how they are behaving.

Me, doing me

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Being a creature of repetition… my “you do you..then you do me” (there’s many variations haha) joke has been running amok as of late. Most of the time it gets a laugh, other times people look at me as if to say .. is she okay like? With the joke on a power wash spin in my ever rotating washing machine mind I started to think about it a lot.. not my joke.. the original saying “You do you and I’ll do me“. The more I thought about it- the more I liked it, the pure simplicity behind it. We get so caught up in “doing other people” (haha sorry couldn’t help myself) that we forget to just “do ourselves”. If we all spent more time “doing ourselves” we wouldn’t have to worry about “doing everyone else” because they would be busy “doing themselves”.

Javi, doing Javi. Down with the horses 

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 Okay this “everyone doing everyone” has a point.. which I’ll get to now….. ORGY!! (Hahaha okay okay sorry, again.. I went there!) I have no control over anyone else- what they do, what they say, what they don’t say, how they feel or how they behave. The only thing I do have control of is how I choose to react, feel, engage and interact with others. Being a barmaid, you can get slammed with all sorts of comments on a daily basis. Alcohol always fuels the fire and a burning tongue can unleash all types of toddler tripe from someone’s gob! At the end of the day, it’s got nothing to do with you- it’s all the other persons own shit surfacing. And when they don’t want to deal with it or don’t know how to deal with it.. they fire their shit-show at you. I never like to say ‘it’s just the alcohol talking’.. because in fact, it’s the person who is talking.. the alcohol has just given them the necessary lubricant to unhinge that jaw. They are not “doing themselves“, they are trying to “do you”. And unless you want someone to ‘do you’.. don’t let them!

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With all this ‘doing myself’ in mind, I’ve really been trying to focus on ‘doing myself‘ lately and taking control of the reigns. I would say I’m pretty good at following my heart and doing what I what, when I want. And when I don’t want to do something, I won’t do it. This is easy when it comes to physical actions: practical tasks or activities or socialising or just day-to-day doings. The trick lies within mentally and emotionally ‘doing yourself‘. Watching where your thoughts go, keeping an eye on your emotions- is your inner world mirroring your outer world?

Me, Myself and I – doing me

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So take some time out today.. relax and “you just do you”. Cause no one else can do you the way you do you.

“THINGS CAN CHANGE IN A DAY” 7/9/17

“THINGS CAN CHANGE IN A DAY” 7/9/17

Life is always full of surprises and while it’s good to have a plan, plans can change in a second so I’m trying to learn to be flexible and just go with the flow and accept what ever life throws at me. Everything is temporary and nothing is certain. The only thing I’m certain of is that I am Caoimhe! There’s only one Caoimhe Cassanova!

Just as I was settling into life at the Territory Manor in Mataranka, the metaphorical rug was pulled from under my feet. I got some news that I would be sent down to the HighWay Inn at Daly Waters, another 1.5hour drive into Northern Territory. This move came as quite a surprise. JANET! I DON’T WANNA GO!! (Janet is my old boss from Territory Manor.. and she’s great and I miss her). However, trying to live by my new mantra ‘go with the flow’.. I just accepted it and tried to fully enjoy my last few days in Mataranka. Goodbye Never Never Land!

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During my 2 weeks in Territory Manor I instantly bonded with a little gem of a gal- my colleague and now partner in crime, Javi! She is my long-lost Chilean sista from another mista and probably the first person from another country I’ve met who gets the indescribable Irish phrase .. “oh sure look!”. My move to the High Way Inn wouldn’t be alone.. Javi was coming with me! She’s travel size so she packs up real tiny so I could fit her into my backpack ; ) Having worked mostly with other couples.. Dutch, Australian, Italian (a right old cocktail of nationalities).. I think they thought it wouldn’t be fair to split up this Irish-Chilean couple of beauties!

Chile-ish

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The HighWay Inn is located Daly Waters, on the corner of the Stuart High and Carpentaria high way.. in the middle of no where basically. It’s a petrol station/bar/restaurant/accommodation joint. Jobs here range from kitchen work, bar, shop, housekeeping and maintenance. When I arrived I thought I had landed back in Ireland, as half of the staff here are from the Emerald Isle. Sure look.. isn’t that grand! A fine bunch of lads!

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I’ve been here almost one week now and oh how time flies! As my colleague puts it “the days are slow but the weeks fly by”, which is very true. Everybody here works really hard and there’s a good sense of community amongst the staff. I have taken up position behind the bar which is fine.. as I’m comfortable both sides of the bar and on top of the bar for that matter ; ) I’m learning the ropes slowly but surely. It’s blooooody hot up here too so I’m thankful for the air conditioning. Those working outside or in housekeeping have to battle with the heat, so RESPECT to them! The days are long.. but my longing for adventure keeps my spirits high. I try my best to keep a smile on my face, a song in my heart, a dance in my toes and an image in my head of me sitting on a beach in Bali, sippin on a baileys. This is just one tiny chapter in a an adventure book that hasn’t even been written yet!

Me and the biggest leaf I’ve ever seen, Colombia 

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Living in the middle of nowhere there isn’t that much to do so I’ve decided I’m going to start this blog/journal/mush of thoughts, to keep this little noggin occupied. I’m also going to take up professional hammocking (this is the art of just sitting in a hammock and chillin like a Irish villain). I’d also like to learn how to play the most complicated of instruments, the triangle of course ; ) The next 3/4 months are going to be interesting.. so lets see what happens. With flights booked to Bali for Christmas, I’m going to work my little ass off so I can enjoy the fruits of my labour in the months to come. I hope Santa can find me there. Santa Baby.. I want a boat and a camper van. Oh and a compass.. I left my old in the centre of the avocado on my homepage.

Anyway, ciao for now little chickens. I’d best go buy a triangle!