A good reason to do the trip early

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:27
ThreadID: 77238 Views:3340 Replies:13 FollowUps:27
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Hi all,
I have just got home from spending 6 nights in hospital. I first went in on Saturday night with a fever (39.8 deg), vomiting, headache etc.... Many tests later showed nothing. They could not identify the bug that was causing the fever and could not control the fever. Finally on tuesday they found out I had pneumonia. At last they could start treating it. Then on Tuesday night I had some chest pain. They did an ECG and it showed there was a problem with my heart. Yeah right I thought as if. Suddenly I had a team of doctors doing all sorts of tests. I was rushed up to the cardio ward for further tests. They came in and told me the tests showed there had been some damage done to my heart.
WOW, it really hit me. What if this is it, what if I can't do all those fun things anymore. It really brings you down to earth. Lying in hospital I thought to myself, well if this is it at least I can say I have done my big trip around oz. It made me realise how lucky we were to have done our trip already.
My point is Don't leave it to long. I am 37 and there I was lying in hospital with machines attached and doctors doing tests every 5 mins wondering what my future was.
I am back home now and it turns out the results were caused by inflammation around the heart not the actual heart. I have another week off for recovery and have to go back in for regular tests over the next while but I am better than I was a few days ago. So many people say I will do it when I retire or the kids grow up or whatever, just don't wait to long.

Take care
Josh
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Reply By: Sir Kev & Darkie - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:37

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:37
Josh,

You have just experienced what I did when I had my Back operation. 7 weeks in hospital and 6 months of lifting nothing more than 5kgs really makes you of all the things you could miss out on if something bad happens.

Good to see you are back on deck, it seems a few EO members have been laid up with Pneumonia lately

Cheers Kev
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He was presented with a difficult decision: push on into the stretching deserts, or return home to his wife.

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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:46

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:46
Thanks Kev,
Makes you think about your future and lying in hospital there is plenty of time to think. Glad it happened here and not some where in the middle of nowhere.

Josh
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Follow Up By: Bob of KAOS - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:49

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:49
Good advice Josh

Glad you pulled through

You can see why pneumonia is often referred to as the old man's friend.
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 08:41

Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 08:41
Indeed they have 6 days in hospital for me too :)
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Reply By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:58

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 16:58
Glad to hear your on the road to recovery Josh. Would have been anxious times for your young family, as well as you.

You have done so much with your young family at such a young age, (much of which you have shared with us here at ExplorOz) and obviously there is still so much more you want to do in the years ahead. Take care mate, and maybe you'll be back on the road sooner than planned. A good dose of the Aussie bush will see ya right :-)

Fred.
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 17:13

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 17:13
Thanks Fred,
I am so thankful for what we have been able to do so far. We currently have friends camping in our backyard that we met in cape york so it has been great catching up but my feet are getting itchy. This has made me realise it is time to pull the finger out and get a few things organised. it has been amazing the people we have met from this site over the times of our travels and hopefully won't be to long before we are back on the road.

Josh
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Reply By: Member - joc45 (WA) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:05

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:05
Hi Josh,
You're a very lucky guy to have been close to a cardio ward and received the appropriate treatment!
I felt the same as you when I had severe chest pains last year. No, it can't be the heart, I thought at the time, I've been going to a gym for over 40 years, eaten all the right stuff, don't smoke, don't drink too much, not overweight, reasonably fit, good health. No, the pain must be something else. 3 hours later, I was on the operating table, and 6 coronary bypasses later, sitting up in bed wondering what happened. I'm well on the road to recovery and now a member of the zipper club. Luckily, no heart damage, but it was completely out of the blue, and severe enough to bump someone else off the operating table at the time.
Ok, I'm 64, not 37, but was banking on lasting another 20 years before my luck runs out. No hurry, I reckoned, in doing all the things I wanted to; I'm retired, and I can do these things in my own good time.
That's all changed now; 6 months on, I'm almost back to normal fitness and have a good prognosis from my doc. But like you imply, life's too short to sit around. I'm now planning as much as I can to see more of this wonderful country and do some overseas trips.
Might see you out on the road!
Take it easy,
Gerry

oh, and I can't speak highly enough of Charlie Gairdiner Hospital (WA) for their level of care...




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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:50

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:50
Hey joc45,
A bit scary really at any age. Like you I am fairly fit, don't smoke, don't drink. I do eat take away a bit but didn't think that much. Good to hear you are Getting back on track and planning to get out more. Hope all goes well from now on for you,

Josh
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Reply By: joff1 - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:07

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:07
Glad to hear you are on the mend mate. Hope Tassie is treating you well otherwise.

Cheers
joff
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:55

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:55
Hi Joff,
How's life treating you guys. Tassie is going well. Spent a few hours on the water the other week and got 35 flathead. I must admit I did enjoy up north a bit to much I think.

Josh
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Follow Up By: joff1 - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 19:20

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 19:20
Pretty good mate, we are still floating around WA. Looking to head home in July to save for the next big one.

That 80 of yours over it's streak of bad luck yet?
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:00

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:00
We had a great run back home from the cape and it finally looked to all be going well. We have actually sold it now and am starting to look for the next beast to set up for the next trip. I am thinking of trying to find a good stock 80 and building it up again as I just love that model. The girls really miss the car. Sounds like you are still having fun!!!!
We just spent the night with some friends we met in cape york looking at videos of their trip. What a night and what memories.

Josh
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Reply By: Member - Heather G (NSW) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:08

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 18:08
Hi Josh,

Yes, it is a real wake up call when something like you have experienced happens isn't it. Good to know you are on the mend again now.

A few years ago my hubby (aged mid 50's and the man least likely)was sent for an angiogram after having what he thought was heartburn on a quite rigorous weekend hike and was found to have a 95% blockage in one artery, and a less serious one in another. (I had to insist on him seeing a doctor as he thought he was ok!)
He was in theatre later that day having open heart surgery and our day in Sydney turned into a week!

We decided very quickly to re assess our lives and priorities and started to think about retirement a few years earlier than planned. Like you we worried about just how much our lives would have to change.....could we still bushwalk, fish, paddle a canoe and do all the other activities we enjoy so much etc?
We went out and bought our first RV - a penguin Jayco camper - within three months and began to travel, having the necessary health checks when necessary.

The following year he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, had a radical prostatectomy and suffered all the complications and side effects possible!

Two wake up calls was enough.

We finished up at work and have enjoyed lots of travelling around this fantastic country. Life just seems to be getting better and more enjoyable and we live full, active and mostly healthy lives with regular health checks, a bit of medication, a good diet, plenty of exercise...lots of laughter and friends.

Travelling, meeting so many other people along the way who have had similar experiences just keeps reminding us how short our lives can be.
I agree wholeheartedly with your statement about not waiting too long as you may never get the chance.


Regards,

Heather G




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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 19:01

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 19:01
Hi Heather,
Sorry to hear the other half has had a rough run. It makes you reaccess where you are going or what you are doing. I still have a few more tests and I am not 100 percent sure all is ok just yet. Funny how after something like this you suddenly feel every little niggle. Hope you get in many years of happy travel in.

Josh
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Reply By: harrisinoz - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 21:06

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 21:06
Hi Josh

Glad to hear you are recovering.....this is the reason why at 37 we too are planning our trip around this great country of ours, you just don't know what is around the corner, but like you say, you have done the trip which I assume was with your family and those memories will last a life time for you and your family. I said to hubby we could save save save until we retire then sit down and say what have we done with our lives, where have we been, on the odd holiday now and then no big memories, no chances, just lived to pay off the mortgage! I think life is for living you get one life and only a few precious years with your kids before the teens hit, so enjoy each other whilst you can.......

On a happier note! if you have any recommendations I would be glad of your feedback!

Take care Karen
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:10

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:10
Hi Karen,
Glad to hear you are looking at doing some tripping. Yes our trip was with my wife and 2 daughters aged 3+5 when we left. We were on the road almost 3 yrs. To closeness of our family now is so worth it and when this happened it really hit us hard. You mentioned the memories. We just spent last night with a couple we met in cape york looking at videos of the trip and the time we spent with them. It was so good and those memories can't be got at home working. It also made us realise how much we really have done.
As for recommendations..... Take your time so you can see it properly. You are better seeing less properly than more in a hurry. By doing this you will actually see more. We have a website if you would like to have a look which I still have to update with some more info. www.kidsandall.webs.com
When planning for a big trip decide what you want to do and see then work out what you need to do to achieve that. Happy travels

Josh
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Reply By: landed eagle - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:19

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:19
Over the last 6 years ,5 of my best mates have passed away. 4 through illness, one in a car accident in the USA. One of them was my best man at my wedding. All have left wives/partners behind and a few kids to carry on without them. Certainly makes you think about your own mortality that's for sure.
Every funeral I attend makes me wonder if my turn is coming soon!! Looks like all the blokes of our group are jinxed.
Took the family away for nine weeks last year as a taster for things to come.Now we use the van as often as possible.The wife and I work a four day week and I say no to any weekend overtime now and work can wait.
To put this into perspective, my best man died when I was 39.

Make the most of the days we have on this planet. Here for a good time,not a long time.
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Follow Up By: Bob of KAOS - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:36

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:36
LE

Thats a lot of lawns you'll be mowing ;-)

Bob
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:35

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:35
Hi L- Eagle,
We were talking last night with friends and I made the comment "when people ask what I do for a living" I say "I fish and I enjoy life" That's what I do for a living. I work as a sales rep to pay for it. Don't let work become your living, just a way to pay for your living. You have to plan to be here for a long time but live for the here and now. Sounds like it might be time for the landed eagle to take off lol.

Josh
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Follow Up By: landed eagle - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 15:49

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 15:49
My motto is

"work to live,dont live to work".

Fridays off every week and long weekends that are four days long for me and the family. Works for us.
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Reply By: Muntoo - Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:33

Saturday, Mar 27, 2010 at 23:33
I know how ya feel mate. Just 5 months ago, had a good scare. Had been having some pain and a little strange feeling around heart for some time, but doctors couldnt find anything wrong. Put it down to strained muscle. Then one night the heart went berserk,pain, rapid beat, sweating, shaking, blacking out. Off to the sick bay, spent the night, had 3 ECGs done, a echocardiogram, chest x rays, blood tests, and hooked up to about a million machines and on oxygen all night and half next day. Was very scary, i didnt like any of it. Anyway 5 months later, still havent had a beer, eating habits have changed alot and try to exercise more. Doctors still cant tell me whats wrong, getting very frustrating. All this and im only 26 years old, lived a very healthy and physical life prior to my 20's, but still worked hard and never tired easy. Now i can hardly do an hours work without being stuffed. All the doctor said was stop drinking beer and coke. Did that but im still no better.
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:44

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:44
Hi Muntoo,
I think the worst thing is not knowing. First they told there was a problem with the heart. then they said there was some damage done to the heart. Now they say all they can suggest is there was some swelling around the heart that caused the problem not the actual heart but they are not convinced so I still have to go back in for more tests. I also feel ever niggle and ache and wonder should I rush back in. Worst part is I almost didn't bother ringing the ambos and going in cause I thought I'm tuff, fit and as if it would be anything serious. I geuss none of us are bullet proof. Mate I hope they get it sorted for you soon and you can get back on track. All the best.

Josh
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Follow Up By: Maîneÿ . . .- Friday, Apr 09, 2010 at 18:26

Friday, Apr 09, 2010 at 18:26
Muntoo
where abouts do you live ??

Maîneÿ . . .
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Friday, Apr 09, 2010 at 19:09

Friday, Apr 09, 2010 at 19:09
Muntoo, be careful, sounds like you have a stalker
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Follow Up By: Maîneÿ . . .- Friday, Apr 09, 2010 at 22:25

Friday, Apr 09, 2010 at 22:25
Bonz,
I've been accused of being "Muntoo"
so was just wondering where I live?
Wonder if my gf knows?

Maîneÿ . . .
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 09:26

Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 09:26
Muntoo is your girlfriend?
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Follow Up By: Muntoo - Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 18:06

Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 18:06
Stalking? Whats going on here.

I live in Broome.

I aint no stalker thats for sure
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Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 18:23

Saturday, Apr 10, 2010 at 18:23
Didnt think you were Muntoo, Mainey was asking where you were from, and him already with a gf.
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Reply By: vk1dx - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 04:44

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 04:44
Like the others above I am pleased you are on the mend and getting ready for more trips.

Here is one for the books and please if any of you "BLOKES" think "ITS NOTHING" think again and go and see your doctor even for a small heart pain or weird feeling.

For months I had been fainting about once a fortnight and back again without any pain or reason. Then one day (30 Sep 08) sitting right here I said to my wife "I feel strange again". About 30 seconds later I came around and she said my whole body seemed to shut down. No breathing nor pulse. But I felt fine. Absolutely NO AFTER AFFECTS!!!! (that's #1)

But we called the ambos this time. They came and did all their tests and because of my age (their words) they took me to the hospital. I was at the end of a line in the corridor when I went again (that's #2) . They all got a surprise when my wife called them back form their mates and told them. They moved me to the front of the line. I was good again. I went again (that's #3) and woke up in recovery with them about to hit me with that zapper thing. Luckily they stopped. Phils off to ICU and they plug all these things on me and "Nothing" is the response. No one could believe it. Some old character (OLDER THAN ME came up with an idea and suggested it was an electrical breakdown in the heart. Well after two more episodes (That's #4 and #5) they had be on a table 7AM next day and stuck this little computer in my chest. Every now and then I feel if fire off when a pulse fails to make the heart pump. I wonder if it will keep going in the grave. Tick tick tick Scary hey!

Apparently its hereditary and it appears that's what got my Father and older brother. But they did not have this technology back then.

To top if off on the 22nd December 08 I get told I have an inoperable cancer - a Lymphoma - cancer in the blood. I am now on chemo and waiting to see what the outcome is. Maybe a bone marrow may help but even that they cannot say yet. Merry Christmas Phil

Bloody scary but its good to know I will get to the Cape. Planning is continuing. The boys have upgraded to the bigger 4.2TD's and its going to be the best trip ever.

I am so so lucky.

Phil
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Follow Up By: Member - Andrew (QLD) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 09:33

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 09:33
I hope you have a great trip up North Phil and everything sorts itself out in the long run with the medical side of things.

Andrew
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:54

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 10:54
Thanks vk1dx,
Funny how us blokes think it is nothing just an ache or a pain, nothing to worry about. When I was in hospital and I had the chest pain the nurse said he would do and ECG I was like, are you kidding, I have been vomiting all day that's all it is, just give me a pain killer. Glad he didn't listen to me.
I hope they get it all sorted for you soon. You will love cape york so enjoy. We were watching video from up there last night with friends and I recon it is my favourite spot in oz. There is just some thing so special about the cape. Have a great time. When do you think you will be up there?

Josh
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Follow Up By: vk1dx - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 11:02

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 11:02
Thanks

This trip is going to be a ripper. Even getting the sons kitted up for it. I have just been on the phone about it. My son wanted to know why I was so stirred up about getting things done. Having fun already.

Catchya

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Reply By: Member - mervyn p (VIC) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 11:06

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 11:06
Hi Josh what a shock its only a few weeks ago you where in the porta boat having a great time at moulting lagoon, hope everything is ok, that is why i retired early, i reckon i have a window between 60 and 70 years of age to enjoy traveling around this great country. it happened as a shock to us as well i had chest pains and was sent for a stress test, they stopped the test half way through and admitted me to emergancy, where i was on a cardio machine for 5 days, they tried to jump my heart back into rythem with the paddles it was un succesful so now i am on warfrin for the rest of my life, to stop me from having strokes, anyway enough of that bull bleep , just acouple of weeks and i will be down in SA ( flinders ranges ) planning my trip up through the centre. Good to see your okey cheers uptotenyearsroundoz
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 11:28

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 11:28
Thanks Merv,
It is amazing how quickly things change. It really caught me by surprise. I had no lead up to it, it just nailed me. Hope you enjoy the flinders. We really liked it up around Arkaroola and wilpena but couldn't get over how dry it was. Enjoy the rest of your trip mate.

Josh
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Reply By: brushmarx - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 12:58

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 12:58
I'm glad you are all still alive to enjoy tripping, but you don't always get much of a warning.
About 18 months ago, I had a few feelings of disorientation over a couple of weeks. Thought nothing of it.
I woke up 7 weeks later.
I had developed a Staph bacteria infection that had a chew on my heart valves.
I had a stroke, 2 heart attacks, one heart valve replaced with a little piggy one, and one valve repaired. My chest was cracked open 4 times (valve job, stop post op bleeding,infection, clean up after infection and remove blood clots from the heart), kidney failure, emergency hernia operation, collapsed lung, and was breathing through a plastic tube in the side of my neck.
All from an infection from a scratch.
I was back at work 3 weeks after hospital, and now seem fine.
I had no blocked arteries, no high cholesterol, no warning at all.
It's worth checking out any weird feelings.
And men, have your prostate checked. It doesn't make you gay just by going to the doctor.
Cheers
I'll get there someday, or die wanting to.

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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 13:33

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 13:33
Good advice getting a check up. Met a couple a while ago who had been planning the big trip. Decided to get a pre trip medical done. Turns out he had cancer and only 6 months left. So off they went and had a ball for as long as they could. I had no real warning just got sick. Glad to hear you are on the mend and going ok.

Josh
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Reply By: Richard W (NSW) - Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 19:38

Sunday, Mar 28, 2010 at 19:38
Josh,

Good to hear you you are on the mend.
Take care.

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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Thursday, Apr 01, 2010 at 15:07

Thursday, Apr 01, 2010 at 15:07
Thanks Richard,
I am doing well. Just sick off sitting around, the feet are getting itchy again lol.

Josh
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Reply By: Somer - Thursday, Apr 01, 2010 at 12:14

Thursday, Apr 01, 2010 at 12:14
What a story Josh! Glad to hear your on the road to recovery. My partner and I (28 years of age) head off in two weeks time to spend 12 months (or more) travelling around Oz. Actually it's our last day at work today!

We've learnt through others (unfortunately or fortunately) that life is too short so we told work we were leaving, rented out the house, gave the dogs to the parent in laws, sold the cars and invested in a troopie and camper!

Many people are very envious of us and we just say why not? Just go do it!
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Follow Up By: Member - Josh (TAS) - Thursday, Apr 01, 2010 at 15:13

Thursday, Apr 01, 2010 at 15:13
Hi Somer,
Glad to hear you took the plunge and are doing the trip. We had a few people say we were crazy when we headed off, what if something goes wrong. Now they seem very happy that we did it and we loved it. What a feeling to be homeless and out off work lol. Such freedom. We also had heaps of people say " I'd love to do that" but to affraid to take the plunge. Hope you enjoy your trip as much as we did and if you make it to tassie look us up, drop in for a meal.
My best bit of advice for on the road is; remember you will have bad days, but they just make the good days even better. Have fun.

Josh
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