24 (37) hours?

This is an absolute show of a wreck of an excuse for a post. I apologise.

Never write when you’re tired, overtired, stretched for time or just unfit to type.

Halfway through the eleventh (yesterday) I thought: today is my last day in Sydney! Why shouldn’t I mix things up and attempt a day in the life style post? Only posting what I’d written and edited that same day!

I’d be able to:

A. Look back with a little more clarity when I inevitably forget everything I haven’t spewed on the internet as most of my generation will.

B. Hone my writing by practicing a different style (this is pure fuckwittery, this post is a fucking mess)

C. It was easier than doing the Sydney post.

D. It was easier than doing a personal statement.

Unfortunately I kept on writing, I also haven’t slept so it’s become a 24 hours in the life, all written from about 12 PM Saturday til exactly 12PM Sunday. For three days before this I had a pretty bad fever and stayed in bed sleeping and waking every few hours covered in sweat.

I’m writing this opening now in Sydney domestic airport, I haven’t left yet and I already miss it… The city not gate 31.
The city of villages will have it’s own post though, for this is my shoddily written post clumsily titled 24 hours.

Apologies again.


I start the day by apparently turning off my alarm, I don’t remember turning it off but then I never do.

I rise late at about twelve with the eleven hour YouTube Hobbit audiobook still playing. Bilbo and the ragtag gang of dwarves still hadn’t reached Mirkwood. If you’re familiar with lonely mountains then you’ll know I had a pretty dismal nights sleep. However since the upgrade from sofa to nearly mattress I feel bad complaining.

It’s a good time to shower: no queue, and I can dry myself simply by standing on the part of the balcony that catches the sun.

My clothes are next to be dried on the balcony. To fully imagine my beautiful outdoor living Sydney lifestyle simply picture a view stretching all the way into another dingy apartment on some other dingy 8th floor, then twelve to fifteen clothes horses all covered in a fine layer of ash. Add cockroaches and the scene is set.

Clothes drying and skin dry. It’s my last day in Sydney and the sun is shining.

A quick check of the phone, who’s messaged me but you Mother!


Handsome popular young Joe,can you write some more blog?maybe about Christmas and new year if you get a chance? Love mum xxxxxxxxxxxx”
(Some words added)

One O’clock and I sit down to write a post. Yes I did spend awhile in the shower but it would be foolish not to make the most of included bills, who doesn’t appreciate the hour power shower?

So I sit down to write a fast and easy post about a city I can sum up in two sentences. The post is titled Canberra.

Sydney is work in progress, and by that I mean 5 separate drafts titled “Sydney” all completely different work in progress. So thanks but no thanks mummy, if you’re dying to know Christmas was lonely and New Years involved some fireworks.

I start to pen some unfunny insult about ghost town Milton Keynes Canberra when…

Interruption: AKA the moment Joe gives himself an excuse

At this point one of the many lovely French flat mates comes into my room, they seem to be the only nation that can’t speak English. Good for them. “Too much” says the Frenchman (this very roughly translates as “If we don’t clean the flat we could all die here“).
A valid point.
Subsequently I and five fantastic Frenchmen spend two hours of today trying to make the flat safe; they however don’t have to catch a flight at eight tomorrow morning. So the next hour I spend packing my backpack. I then realise it’s over the baggage allowance by 23 kgs. Because I forgot to add any baggage allowance. So I have no baggage allowance.

I spend $10 of phone credit and another hour sweet-talking the airline to get a cosy little place for my backpack in the hold.

Vietnamese Kevin then lovingly pressures me into spending twenty minutes trying to explain every single damn facet of the English language from synonyms to idioms. As the only English person Kevin has met, and more importantly the only one in the flat, I’m the Oxford English. This is actually my favourite part of the day. Aside from drying in the sun after the shower. Oh and the sandwich I just ate.

The landlord’s collector, Steve, or Stevey to those who pay their rent on time, comes in at this point. Freezes. Stomps around and then screams “why hell you get new table?“. I explain to him it’s the same table, just spared the varnish of decades of crushed cockroaches and ash. Twenty minutes haggling over bonds and backpay.

I start packing my hand luggage only to find that one of the stinking thieving scumbag French putains has “french-shopped” me of the pills I take for flying. I do always use their shampoo and drink their milk late at night but that’s taking karma a bit far. With a flight the next day and all.

The half an hour walk to the hospital is made bearable by the fact the tablets are available and free! FREE!!! BECAUSE I’M A BLOODY ENGLANDER!!!!
The half an hour walk back to get my passport is slightly annoying.

I get back to Quay street and realise I haven’t eaten today.

Sausage sandwich. Honey sausage, olive bread. I save one for the cockroach infested fridge, triple bagged, waiting for the 4am start to catch the plane. (CONFUSING NOTE FROM THE FUTURE, that was a grand idea Joe, lovely sandwich)

It’s my last day in Sydney and I didn’t go to the dog races with those girls or go to Coogee for that BBQ. All I did was run around and put off writing. It is RIGHT NOW exactly 12 O’clock, my last full day is over.

I’m not putting off writing posts by the way; writing this blog is pure procrastination! Because it means I don’t have to start the personal statement for university that’s due in four days.

However I do (kinda) have an eleven hour timezone extension before admissions close the proverbial door.

Plenty of time.

I’ll do it in Tasmania… Speaking of.

I didn’t want to sleep for fear of missing the plane, nor did I want to drink… For fear of falling asleep and then missing my plane.

I walked around Sydney CBD sans passport, backpacker watching til maybe three in the morning. Party busses and oasis singalongs. Men crying and ATM queues. Tubby girls chain smoking alone outside of clubs they can’t get into. It doesn’t really seem like Australia, but it’s all experience eh?

I came back to the flat, jumped into the filthy communal swimming pool in my little dinghy with some LED balloons I got for Christmas and turned off the lights. Every time I nearly fell asleep I just dunked my head.

Left the flickering balloons with the stray hairs and plasters in the pool and gave the Dingy to Kevin as I couldn’t take them with me on the flight. I haven’t written about Homebush and the S.S. Ayrefield yet but I miss that tiny child’s boat quite a lot.

5 in the morning and it all becomes a bit of a blur. I remember taking a jar of Nutella as a goodbye present, I’m just not sure who gave it to me. I eat the sandwich I cleverly made for myself earlier. It’s divine.

Falling asleep on an empty subway at six in the morning is more than easy, so busy trying to stay awake I nearly miss Domestic terminals and end up having to do the thing where you have to throw all your stuff out of the train and then jump. It wakes me slightly.

Right now I’m at the airport painfully early as per. This means that the pretty check in desk girl has just had a coffee and watched the sun rise and so lets my tent go on the magical mystery conveyor belt for free. FOR FREES! Virgin Staff are attractive to the point of a sexism in the workplace/equal opportunities lawsuit. Australians are generally pleasing to the eye. Virgin Australia… What can I say. If only I enjoyed flying.

I do obviously enjoy flying, just not having someone else fly.


I find that airport televisions that play children’s programs are usually placed on the same wall as the vending machines.

The many rows of chairs at gate 31 face both ways, but everyone here is sitting on the side that let’s them peek over the pages of ruefully expensive airport magazines to see if they should rush to the front yet. So they can get to Tasmania first OBVIOUSLY.
I sat on the row facing them but now I feel everyone’s looking at me, but that’s just dandy because I’m looking at them. We’re all looking at each other.

Time to board now! I just fell asleep!!

Post Script

I woke up at 9 or 10pm Sunday in a hotel in Tasmania. I remember a little bit of the plane landing and none of being in Sydney airport.
I reckon I took my tablets just before I started writing “I’m at the airport” judging on the increasing level of spelling mistakes I’ve just corrected and the fact I wanted to write far more than what I eventually did. Not to mention some ludicrous things I’ve had to delete from that bit.

What has this twatpacker learnt? The flight was far far too short to take two Valium on an empty stomach.

I somehow managed to find a hotel and slept for maybe 11 or 12 hours.
If I sleep for 8 hours I feel blessed, I usually get 6.
Though Dr Sleep may have devoured my first day in Tasmania I feel incredible. Rested and grateful.

I dreamt that all my clothes in my backpack had turned into fruit flies that swirled and hissed around my face. I guess this was because in the Tazzie airport I got talking to the quarantine guys after playing with the sniffer dogs that hunt for the scent of an apple core or fruit juice stain.

The hotel I somehow found is a good hour walk from the nearest restaurant open at 10 on a Sunday night. So I’ve just come back from a 2 hour walk. Yep two Big Mac meals and quite a lot of other Mcprefixed edibles; not that much considering I had half a jar of stolen Nutella (til I threw myself off a train without it) and two sausage sandwiches in… 30 hours. I don’t remember if I ate on the plane.

With every breath of this air I’m reminded it’s the cleanest in the world, the Southern Cross is barely visible simply because I can’t see anything for all the stars. How can you ever pick out shapes when every…. This is the one thing I can never describe. My favourite thing about Australia. The stars.

I am so glad to be back in Tasmania.

Apologies about the post quality again. Confusing time shifts but more the fact it wasn’t really of note.

But you did ask me to post something mum.



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