Backpacker Jobs How-to

Karumba, QLD, AU

100_3110How the heck are we doing this?

This article comes by way of a reader.  Travis asks:

“I love to travel and have recently come to the decision that I should spend my youth doing what I love.  I found your blog while searching the internet for how to get it done, and it was like a diamond in the rough.  My tentative plan is similar to your own.  I’m going to be here probably another year.  In that time I’m going to work and save to start my trip.

But my real question comes once I get where I want to go.  That place is Australia and I would like to live and work there for awhile.  Maybe making my way towards Europe if I can really save some good money while I’m there (in Australia).  This is the point where I start wondering if that’s all just wishful thinking.  I’m a little foggy on the whole “working in a foreign country and actually making more money there than I would here in the US” part.  For instance, How do you find a job? Place to live?  If you do why are employers and landlords so okay with the idea that you would only be there for a couple months?”

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Victoria Grog Files

250px-Flag_of_Victoria_(Australia).svg

Victoria, AU

We had two opportunities to check out the wine regions of Victoria.  The first was just after we finished up our time working at a horse racing stable and the second is when we decided a mandatory piece of the great Australian road trip with Tiffany’s brother Chris was to jump-start his education on “How to find wines I like?”  While both visits were brief, they both netted solid results on quality vino.

Unfortunately, it was easier to find the beers of Victoria elsewhere in the country than the wines.

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Tradies

Karumba, QLD, Australia

Disembodied audience voice: So Greg & Tiffany

You’re out in the middle of nowhere,

Us: Yep

Disembodied audience voice:  Far enough out that the EMT needs volunteer drivers and the nearest medical facility is an hour away by ambulance?

Us: Right

Disembodied audience voice: 28 foot crocodiles?

Us: That’s what they say

Disembodied audience voice:  And you’re tending a bar at a pub.  Serving drinks.

 100_3278

“Thongs” mean “flip-flops” in Australian.  It leads to funny conversations.

Us: There’s betting too.  Mostly drinks though.

Disembodied audience voice: 

TO WHO!?

Who the heck is willing live there!?

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Sure I’ll drive the Ambulance

Karumba, QLD, Australia

Bar Manager: Greg, You’re sober right?

Greg (bartending): Uh, yeah?

Bar Manager: Right, you’re the only one so do you mind driving the ambulance to the hospital while the medic works on the patient?

Greg: uh…

Queensland Ambulance

Do I get to use the siren?

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Happy 4th of July, Comrade Americans!

Happy 4th of July!

As travelers over the past few years

(wow, that’s still weird to say)

Our history of celebrating the birth of our home nation has ranged from “cowboy guitars around a campfire” as interpreted by the people of Bora Bora, to launching fireworks into an Australian Blizzard.

No matter where we have been, we’ve done our best to take our traditions and blend them with the people we’re around.  To create a little celebration of America with local flair, if you will.  This year is no different

We enjoyed hot dogs:

100_3154Alongside other iconic American foods
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Don’t mow your lawn!

Karumba, QLD, Australia

We want to introduce you to something that Tiffany’s mom considers to be one of the nastiest, grossest, ickiest things in the world:

The Tree Frog

Tree Frog

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Outback pub life

Karumba, QLD, Australia

518 people

About 466 miles from “Cans

Sometimes, oh and without warning of course, the whole town just separates from the mainland and becomes an island for a few months…so you want to watch out for that.

and the largest gator (sorry…CROC…because it matters while it’s eating you…) ever caught in the history of the planet?  Yeah, right down the road.

Krys croc28ft, 4in long.  This is a to-scale model!

Welcome to Karumba

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Coconut rice pudding

Enroute Karumba, QLD, AU

Tiffany’s been having a craving for rice pudding lately.  For some weird reason she gets this craving every few months (this and Mexican food.  Nope, not supposed to make sense).  In our previous lives this was easily and promptly solved by a trip to Trader Joe’s…

Unfortunately for her, they have not yet expanded to Australia.  So she took her tastebuds online.  Now, Tiffany prides herself as a rather “uncomplicated” cook.  She can cook, and very well thank you, but generally she looks for what both Greg and her agree are the “3 hallmarks of good food” –

Easy –

if the recipe calls for more than about 3 ingredients, she’s usually just not interested.

Effective –

Fills one up without getting them fat

Good –

We would choose to eat it again

That being said, since we’ve been traveling and eating restaurant food or quick stuff, both of our desires to cook have increased (a little bit anyway).  The great thing about living on a boat is that you learn lots of new recipes that fit our criteria exactly.

What is awesome is that both of us have learned to make lots of new things that only take a few ingredients and we’ve gotten to the point that if it has 5 ingredients we’re willing to put the effort in.

coconut milkEspecially if one of those ingredients is coconut milk.

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South Australia Grog Files

South_Australia_flagSouth Australia, AU

We didn’t plan on spending too much time here, however the Beast had other plans.  Upside, we got to see a zombie parade and ride the cross-Australia train. Downside, it’s hard to go wine tasting when your wheels decide it’s time for retirement in mid-trip. And led us to get creative in our transportation options

However even with the limited exploration range and curtailed time frame, SA did surprisingly well.   (to be fair, we had the inside scoop)  

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New South Wales Grog files

NSW flag

New South Wales, AU

Sydney, the Blue Mountains, Bondi beach and an Opera house – New South Wales is pretty much what all of us think of when we hear the word “Australia.”

Between driving the coast, bumming around Sydney and working in the ski resorts, we spent a good amount of time here and got to taste our way around.  We even got a chance to check out their most famous wine region: The Hunter Valley.

New South Wales was also the first time we found a grog that 2 sailors would choose to pour out instead of drink.  So, from our highest rating to inventing a new low there was quite a spread for New South Wales:

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