Upon our return from New Zealand, we’d been hearing about the torrential downpour of rain in the Queensland areas, and though we’d planned to head to Brisbane to connect up with Butch Read / Gareth MacReady, the performer we met in Osaka, it seemed any trips northward would not happen. We were apprised daily from TV news reports on the Jackaroo Backpackers brekkie room 24 hours a day, it seemed. (No one would change the channels, and we assumed the news was on all channels. Well, days later, we discovered the channel changing buttons on the side of the TV. Amy was in heaven, and the next thing we knew, it was American TV all day! I don’t think anyone noticed, or they began watching with her.)
Taken by surprise, we watched the protestors in Cairo create havoc, and thereby most likely wrecking out plans to go there. Sigh:: Bummer. At any rate, Chris’ ticket had to be changed immediately, since he would have been there from Feb. 10-16th! Thank goodness for Jeff at AirBrokers.com, who pointed me in the right directions and saved me over $100 helping me book new tickets. Miracles of all miracles, Turkish Air gave blanket refunds for all travelers in February! Jeff tells us that it will take 4-6 weeks – perhaps – to receive our refunds.
In the meantime, Amy and I are wondering if we also will need refunds for our tickets, as we are going to be in Egypt on her birthday, mid-March! Amy even checked online to see other airports to fly into and still get to see the pyramids! We’ll be playing it by ear … travel advisory said not to go to Cairo till February 28th. Holding our breaths …
Tour Misbookings, Cold Snaps for Super Bowl and Melbourne Floods
If disappointment over missing Cairo wasn’t enough, we lost out on reserving a 6-day Uluru Rocks2Water tour (only 1 seat left). Now, we just heard of all the cyclones in Cairns and record rainfall in Melbourne (Aunt Leslie!), with flash flooding everywhere. The Gahn train reservation was delayed for 24 hours due to the flash floods from Darwin to Alice Springs, but tracks were not washed out. In the background, the surprising cold spell in the States is reported almost daily. Just today, TV news showed a sheet of ice sliding off the Super Bowl dome in Dallas, ice on windshields and slicking up the roads, and soccer played in pouring rain around here. The UK backpackers reported record snowfall and freezing, and the Germans we keep meeting during our travels tell us about the cold that their parents are suffering back home. What’s going on with the weather around the world? Global warming – and icing?
Cyclone Yasi, Brushfires in Perth and Flooding – continued
Later, as we headed for our Ayer’s Rock tour (Uluru), Darwin and Alice Springs got hit by a cyclone (Yasi), while Perth suffered a brushfire that was devouring houses in its hungry path. A week later, Darwin reported flood levels, and Alice Springs still had occasional flash floods. In the meantime, people in Brisbane were still mucking about and cleaning out, demolishing and digging out from under the meter-thick layer of mud.
It all makes our Internet disconnections seem moot, doesn’t it? No time for internet withdrawal symptoms …
What ELSE can happen to affect our travels?
Well, these diversions – it depends on how we handle them, neh? Are they really disastrous, or inconvenient, or a chance for further adventures in life? A chance to meet people we otherwise might not have? A test of our own resolve, patience, flexibility?