Saturday, February 20, 2010

Riding around sunshine coast, Australia.

Thanks Contrarian for your advise on the Canada case that we seek for help on the last posting. I got a better picture of what’s happening. In the previous letter, the Canada agency requested me to give them a authorization letter for them to reveal information to Singapore’s MFA. we really appricate your help. out of so many readers that read my blog for the past week, you are the only one that reply.

Thank you Daniel Lin and Tan Tze Wei for their generous donation in our trip. we really appricate. thank alot. HUAT AH!!! It's the 3rd Chinese new year that we had not gone back home.

Day 6 continue:

At Gold Coast, we took up the courage to use a public phone to call George. He was also a member of the horizonsunlimited website and he sent invitation out to other bikers to stay with him if any would have pass by his house.

Gold Coast was only about 45 minutes from where George was staying. He was a humble man, staying in a humble house with his daughter. From George, we get to know more about riding in Australia and the life style of an Aussie. He feasted us with fat prawns and great salad. As you can see from the picture, he had set up the meal table at his ‘garage’ where he does bike and car engine modifications. Errrm… I don’t think you can feel that it looked like a garage. Anyway, it was a very nice setup by him.

George in action.

George brought us around to show us his town and the neighborhood. It wasn’t touristy but it was lively. We loved to see how normal people live their lives. He was sure a big hearted person. We enjoyed the time with him.

Day 7:

The objective of the day was to reach Steve’s house without any breakdown. We took the highway that flanked through Brisbane. There was an electronic toll device that we had passed. All vehicles were supposed to have a kind of electronic chip pasted on the windscreen for paying the toll electronically but if you do not have one, it’s ok because you can pay thro

I went to the website, key in my license plate number and there was a box to chose which state does my vehicle belongs to. I scrolled down and there wasn’t any ‘OTHERS’ to choose so I simply click one. I tried a lot of method to pay that robot but somehow it just wouldn’t accept my registration as a foreign vehicle. Ok, thanks for that.

We managed to reach Steve’s house in time but nobody was around. There wasn’t any house number but I was quite sure that it was his house as there was some tree falling equipment lying around. It was a hot day especially with our riding gear. We waited under the shade and watched cars passing by.

About half hour later, a Landrover passed by, stopped, reversed and drove into the driveway. It was Shirley! We gave each other a big hug.

Shirley drove for 30 minutes, queued up for 45 minutes and bought Christmas seafood for more than a$400 but the seafood here were sure the freshest for this big festival...once a year.

In 2007, I attended the certified tree climbing course that was organized by Nparks of Singapore. Steve was the official instructor and the assessor. Shirley came along with Steve just to visit Singapore and kept him company. It turned out that Steve and I get along well and we often drink together after class and show them around Singapore. At that time, Steve would come over to Singapore once every 2 months for course and we would catch up with each other.

Dinner at Steve's place in Palmwoods, Sunshine Coast with Jeriah (his son), Shirley, Sam, Natdaniel (his eldest son) and Steve!

Sam and I did not expect to see Steve and Shirley during our RTW trip. It was a last minute route that we wanted to travel to Queensland, Sunshine Coast to visit him. We spent our Christmas with them.

It was a special night for us because they drove us around Palmwoods to see the neighbourhood. The residents lighted their house for Christmas and welcome anyone to their house to view the lightings.

Steve was a chainsaw instructor in Queensland. Anyone in Australia that needs to operate a chainsaw needs to be qualified, as like a driving license. So we went with Steve to attend his lesson with a few of his students and managed to learn more about tree falling and chainsaw operation. It was the first time that I saw Steve holding a chainsaw, doing cuts on the big trunk and the cuts he made were so accurate, precise and impressive, simply he did it like cutting cheese.

This was one of Steve's session where I managed to fell down a life tree of 1 foot diameter. I could never do this in Singapore because I will get a fine for cutting a tree without applying permit. $$$.

Steve's mobile classroom. I was learning the correct method of sharpening a chainsaw.

One of the training grounds Steve held his lesson was about 150km from where he stayed, at Kilkivan, a private property that was owned by his friend, Paul. The property was about the size of Ngee Ann Polytechnic (The collage that I attend after my high school in Singapore), or bigger than the size of Singapore Zoo in Mandai. The place where Paul stayed does not have electricity, water and mobile phone reception. They have to depend on solar panels or diesel generator for electricity, rain for water and satellite for internet connection (which was expensive). Paul often had backpackers coming to their farm to work with them in exchange for food and lodging. The organization is called WWOOF. We met a WWOOF’er (a person that uses WWOOF to work at their place in exchange for food and lodging only), from Korea by the name of Hong. Her job was to take care of Paul’s baby daughter of aged 2.

Sam and I chatted with Hong for a few times and Hong shared with us about her WWOOF’ing experience. She said that Paul’s place was the best place that she had ever stayed. She had to stay in the smelly shed or patio with her sleeping bags in other farms. Some farm owner required here to work 8 hours a day under the sun and gave her raw food to be cooked herself. One time, one of the farm owners that she stayed with became cheeky with her and asks her to do massage. Hong ran away on the next day.

Meanwhile, Steve was busy for his work and could not bring us around, he suggested that if I want to brush up my chainsaw skills, we could go and stay with Paul for a few days. I reckon that Paul would be treating us like a WWOOF’er, to help him out on his farm in exchange for food and lodging. At the same time I could help cut down some big trees to be used as timber in his new house that was under construction in the property.

We rode Hope Too with our full gear and reached his house and settled down in a caravan that was being parking there for long time. We had our own privacy and it felt certainly very homely staying in the caravan. It was an old caravan. The windows were broken as bees and mosquito could enter. We open a few cabinets and found lots of old warps nest. There wasn’t a thing inside the caravan that was not dusty, except for the dust itself. We were actually considering about setting up the tent as our tent would be a better place to sleep.

The only thing that we like about this caravan is that we had privacy and a patio.

Paul married a young Thai lady half his age, Benny. She cooked marvelous Aussie bush food. Benny had to wake up around 6-7am, prepare breakfast then wash up, prepare lunch. She had to feed the chooks (chicken), feed the duck, feed the baby, feed the kangaroo, feed the deer and feed the husband. She had to clean the house, clean the baby and clean the dishes. The Aussie food that she had to make was not an easy task. She had to use only firewood to cook them. She had to eat Aussie food. As an Asian myself, I could imagine how much she missed home food. One day I asked her if she knows how to make papaya salad and the next day, Benny, Sam and I enjoyed the papaya salad with plain rice, Paul preferred his own Aussie food.

Paul brewed his own beer. A can of beer brewing kit can brew up to 60 bottles (660ml). The cost for brewing these 60 bottles were less than A$30 but Benny and Paul got to work for that (Benny don’t drink). Start up cost was not so expensive. I think it is illegal to do that in Singapore. (Opps… only legal in Singapore if one would apply and pay for special brewing license like Asia brewery for Tiger beer, Brew workz at Clark Quay).

Hi everyone, this is Benny. She's a very kind and hard working lady that missed home.

The first day, I helped Paul on his saw mill. He used his big excavator to lift the raw log onto the saw mill. He taught me on how to use and measure the mill. So he operate the mill and I would carry the bloody heavy timber planks which Paul had cut (5m x 0.4m x 20cm), walked 20 meters and put the planks properly. The planks would be used for their new house and it will be for their child.

this picture was taken after entering Paul's property, i had to go down a very steep slope and i had no confident. so Sam walked down. I bet you can't see where his property ends.

While I was helping him so hard, I told myself why am I helping someone to build their home? An Aussie laborer would usually get a$20-$25 per hour of work. Simply just for the first day, Paul would have to pay about 8hr x $20 = $160 for that work but all I wanted was to learn something and Paul always wait for WWOOF’ers to give him free help. I am not supposed to work in Australia. I am doing it to learn something.

Sam had to keep Benny’s daughter busy. Sam had to help with washing dishes. Sam had to be careful about using water because they survived with rainwater only. Luckily it had been raining heavily these few days.

It was a tough day but rewarding when Paul brought out his 50 cents beer and it was truly nice being home made. The night was settled when Benny cooked us some Aussie bush food.

We had chosen to stay with Paul and help him out in his family because we were too free with Steve and Steve was busy with his business. On the second day, Paul took me deep into his property where 3 huge trees were standing and he reckons that the wood from these 3 trees would be sufficient for the remaining floorboard. We had to drive in, crossing 2 small creeks, bashing our vehicle onto small standing trees and rocks to reach the trees. The diameter of the tree was twice the size of my chainsaw’s bar length. one of them had a weird tree base shape of a letter ‘n’ and Paul wanted the tree to fall against it’s weight of the crown where it was leaning. I looked at the weight of the tree where it would be leaning to, I looked at the direction of fall, I looked at my escape route and it would have to use a special cut.

After 1 hour, I was sweating down to my underwear with the trees lying onto the ground. Paul had to use a farm tractor to chain the logs back to his house. It was his turn to perform and I could take some rest. It happened to be what we wanted to be.

The Aussie English, the American English and the British English were so different. The Aussie had their own terms. For them, breaky was breakfast, chook was chicken, stubbie was bottle (usually refer to beer in bottle), Ut was short form for utility vehicle like a pick up or small truck, eskies was ice cooler box and the most confusing one:

Tea was dinner?!

The way they pronounced the alphabet ‘A’, ‘E’ and ‘I’ sounded the same.

An art work done by Shirley. When she came to Singapore, she loved the candles that the tradition Chinese used for prayers, usually for the dead but the way she uses it, isn't it beautiful?

So during 31st December 2009, New Year’s Eve, Paul said to us:

Goh and Sam, do you want to follow us to XXX town to watch the ‘ree-die-yah’ show? It’s gonna to be free, no money involved and all we need is to bring your own chair. I will buy you dinner there (as usual, they will provide us dinner when we stay with them and I had helped him saved $160 per day.)

I asked: what is ‘ree-die-yah’?

Paul: you know every year we have this, there will be lots of people and food, cowboy and festival on the New Year’s Eve.

Well, it’s free and who cares what show or festival it would be. We want to be somewhere for this New Year’s Eve.

we took our chairs, went into the lorry with the family, drove for 1 hour and we are at the entrance of the event of ‘ree-die-yah’ and saw this sign:

Adult: a$15.00

‘We have to pay $$$ to go in? Didn’t he said that it would be free?’ I told myself and looked at Sam.

Sam said to me if we need to pay for ourselves?

I said to her ‘no, lets keep cool first. see how Paul reacts and what he will do.’

So we looked at Paul, he took out his wallet and at the same time, he asked me:

‘Goh, do you have money?’

I replied honestly:


Then he paid $30 just for him and Benny and walked into the gate.

At that moment, I felt like standing outside the gate and wait for them to finish the show. We had to pay $30 to go in? If we were on our bike, we would definitely turn around and go back.

But the ‘ree-die-yah’ kept us a mystery. What’s that ‘ree-die-yah’ that Paul was talking about and we need to queue up to enter? What kind of Aussie festival would it be on this New Year’s Eve. I dragged out the a$30 from my wallet, queue up, had a last look at the a$30 before I handed them to a guy mending counter. In return, we had a fancy wrist band tagged on our left hand like a patient that had escaped from a hospital.

What was that ‘ree-die-yah’ show?


Chinese version translated by yahoo babelfish:

您的忠告的感谢反对在加拿大事例。 我得到了发生了什么的一张更好的图片。 在早先信件,加拿大代办处请求我给他们他们的授权信件能暴露信息到新加坡的MFA。 我们真正地感谢您的帮助。 在读我的过去星期的博克的许多读者外面,您是回复的只那个。 再感谢。


在Gold Coast,我们占去了勇气使用公用电话告诉乔治。 他也是horizonsunlimited网站的成员,并且他寄发了邀请到其他骑自行车的人和他呆在一起,如果其中任一由他的房子会有通行证。 Gold Coast只大约45分钟从乔治停留。 他是一个谦逊的人,停留在有他的女儿的一个谦逊的房子里。 从乔治,我们在澳洲知道更多关于乘坐和澳大利亚人的生活方式。 他赴宴了我们用肥胖大虾和伟大的沙拉。 您能从图片看到,他设定了膳食桌在他骑自行车和发动机修改的他的`garage。

Errrm… 我不认为您能认为它看起来象车库。 无论如何,它是一个非常好的设定由他。 乔治使我们信服显示我们他的镇和邻里。 它不是适宜游览的,而是它是活泼的。 我们爱看正常人民怎么居住他们的生活。

第7天 : 今天的宗旨将到达史蒂夫的房子没有任何故障。 我们上通过布里斯班侧的高速公路。 有我们通过了的一个电子通行费设备。 所有车应该有在电子支付的通行费挡风玻璃电子芯片黏贴一,但是,如果您没有一,它是好的,因为您能支付thro 我去网站,在我的牌照号码的钥匙,并且有箱子对选择了哪个状态做我的车属于。 我移下来,并且没有所有`选择的其他的,因此我点击一。 我设法很多方法支付机器人,但是它就是不会莫名其妙地接受我的注册作为外国车。 好,感谢那。 我们设法到达史蒂夫的房子及时,但是没人是。 没有所有房子号码,但是我相当肯定它是他的房子,尽管有放一些树落的设备。 它是一热的天特别是与我们的骑马齿轮。 我们等待了在树荫之下并且观看汽车通过。 关于半小时后,越野车通过了,停止,扭转并且驾驶了入车道。

她是Shirley! 我们互相拥抱了大。

在2007年,我上了由新加坡Nparks组织的被证明的树上升的路线。 史蒂夫是正式辅导员和科税者。 Shirley与史蒂夫一起来参观新加坡并且保留了他公司。 它结果史蒂夫和我得到好,并且我们在类以后一起经常喝并且在新加坡附近显示他们。 那时,一旦路线和我们的每2个月将互相跟上,史蒂夫会过来到新加坡。 在我们的RTW旅行期间,山姆和我没有期望看史蒂夫和Shirley。 它是一条最后一刻的路线我们想到昆士兰旅行,拜访他的阳光海岸。 我们花费了我们的与他们的圣诞节。 史蒂夫是一位锯辅导员在昆士兰。 任何人在需要操作锯的澳洲需要合格,象一个驾照。 因此我们去与史蒂夫参加他的与一些的教训他的学生并且设法学会更多关于树落和锯操作。 第一次是我看见史蒂夫拿着锯,做在大树干的裁减和他做的裁减是很准确,精确和印象深刻的,他做了喜欢切口乳酪。 史蒂夫举行他的教训的其中一个训练场约为150km从他停留了,在Kilkivan,由他的朋友的地方拥有的一项私有财产,保罗。 物产是大约义
安工艺学校(我在我的高中以后出席在新加坡)的拼贴画的大小。 保罗被停留没有电、水和移动电话招待会的地方。 他们必须依靠太阳电池板或电的柴油水的发电器,雨和卫星是昂贵的)的互联网连接的(。 保罗经常有背包徒步旅行者走向他们的农场工作与他们以交换食物和寄宿。 组织称WWOOF。 我们会见了使用WWOOF在他们的地方运作以交换食物和只寄宿)的WWOOF'er (人,从韩国名叫洪。 她的工作是照顾保罗的小女儿年岁2。 山姆和我与与我们分享的洪几次和洪聊天了关于她的WWOOF'ing经验。 她说保罗的位置是她停留的最佳的地方。 她必须在有她的睡袋的有臭味的棚子或露台停留在其他农场。 要求的某些农厂所有者这里工作8小时每天在太阳之下和给了她将被烹调自己的未加工的食物。 一次,和呆在一起她的其中一个农厂所有者变得厚颜无耻与她并且要求她做按摩。 洪在次日跑了。 同时,史蒂夫为他的工作是繁忙的,并且不可能带来我们,他建议,如果我想要掠过我的锯技能,我们可能去和和保罗呆在一起几天。 我总计保罗会对待我们象WWOOF'er,帮助他他的农场的以交换食物和寄宿。 同时我可能帮助砍了作为木材将使用的一些大树在是建设中在物产的他的新房。 我们在停放那里在很长时间的有蓬卡车太乘坐了希望与我们充分的齿轮并且到达了他的房子并且定居了。 我们有我们自己的保密性,并且它感觉一定非常亲切停留在有蓬卡车。 它是一辆老有蓬卡车。 因为蜂和蚊子可能输入,窗口是残破的。 我们打开一些个内阁并且发现了许多老经线巢。 没有在不是多灰尘的有蓬卡车里面的一件事,除了尘土。 因为我们的帐篷是睡觉的一个更好的地方我们实际上考虑关于设定帐篷。

保罗与一个年轻泰国夫人,安非他命药片结婚,并且她烹调了奇妙澳大利亚灌木食物。 安非他命药片必须在6-7am附近醒,准备早餐然后洗涤,准备午餐。 她必须哺养chooks (鸡),喂养鸭子,喂养婴孩,喂养袋鼠,喂养鹿和喂养丈夫。 她必须清洗房子,清洗婴孩和清洗盘。 她必须做的澳大利亚食物不是一项容易的任务。 她必须使用仅木柴烹调他们。 她必须吃澳大利亚食物。 作为亚洲人,我可能想象多少她错过了家庭食物。


保罗酿造了他自己的啤酒。 A罐头啤酒酿造成套工具可能酿造60个瓶(660ml)。 酿造的这60个瓶费用比A$30是较少,但是安非他命药片和保罗得到为那工作(安非他命药片不饮料)。 开始费用不是那么昂贵的。 我认为做那在新加坡是非法的。 (Opps…仅法律在新加坡,如果一个将申请并且支付象亚洲啤酒厂的特别酿造执照老虎啤酒的,酿造workz在克拉克・奎伊)。

第一天,我帮助了他的锯木厂的保罗。 他使用他的大挖掘机举在锯木厂上的未加工的日志。 他教了我关于怎样使用和测量磨房。 因此他操作磨房,并且我会运载保罗切开了的血淋淋的重的木材(5m x 0.4m x 20cm),被迫辞职20米并且适当地投入了板条。 板条为他们的新房将使用,并且它将是为他们的孩子。 当我那么艰苦时帮助他,我告诉了自己为什么是帮助某人的我修建他们的家? 澳大利亚民工通常会得到a$20-$25每个小时工作。 完全为第一天,保罗将必须支付关于8hr x $20 = $160那工作的,但是我要的所有是学会某事和保罗总是等待WWOOF'ers给他自由帮助。 我不应该在澳洲工作。 我做着它学会某事。 Sam必须保持安非他命药片的女儿繁忙。 Sam必须帮助与洗涤的盘。 因为他们生存了与仅,雨水山姆必须小心关于使用水。 幸运地沉重下雨这些少量天。 它是一坚韧天,但是奖励保罗什么时候提出了他的50分啤酒,并且真实地好在家被做的。 当安非他命药片烹调了我们一些澳大利亚灌木食物,夜被安定了。 我们选择和保罗呆在一起和帮助他他的家庭的,因为我们是太自由以史蒂夫,并且史蒂夫是繁忙的与他的事务。 在第二天,保罗采取了我深深入3棵巨大的树站立的他的物产,并且他总计从这3棵树的木头为剩余的地板是充足的。 我们必须驾驶,横渡2条小小河,打击我们的在小常设树和岩石上的车到达树。 树的直径两次是我的锯的酒吧长度的大小。 他们中的一个有信件`n的古怪的树基地形状,并且保罗要树落反对它是它倾斜冠的重量。 我看它将倾斜对树的重量,我看秋天的方向,我看我的逃走的路线,并且它将必须使用特别裁减。

在1个小时以后,我冒汗下来到我的与说谎在地面上的树的内衣。 保罗必须使用农用拖拉机束缚日志回到他的房子。 它是他的执行的轮,并且我可能采取一些休息。 它偶然是什么我们要是。 澳大利亚英国、美国英语和英国英语是很不同的。 澳大利亚人有他们自己的期限。 对于他们, breaky早餐, chook是鸡, stubbie是瓶(通常参见在瓶的啤酒),eskie是冰致冷机箱子和混淆一: tea是晚餐!

方式他们发音了字母表`A', `E,并且`I听起来同样。

Goh和Sam,您是否想要跟随我们到XXX镇观看`ree死yah'展示? 它对是自由的,没有介入的金钱,并且我们需要的所有是带来您自己的椅子。 我给您买晚餐那里(照常,他们将提供我们晚餐,当我们和他们呆在一起)

我要求: 什么是`ree-die-yah'?
保罗: 您知道每年我们有此,那里是许多人和食物、在除夕的牛仔和节日。
那么,它是自由的,并且谁关心什么展示或节日它是。 我们想要在某处为这个除夕。 我们采取了我们的椅子,进入与家庭的卡车,驾驶了1个小时,并且我们是在`事件的入口ree-die-yah'并且看了这个标志: . . . . . `我们必须支付参加? 没有他说它是自由的?‘我告诉了自己并且看山姆。 如果我们需要支付我们自己,山姆对我说? 我对她的`没有说,让保留凉快第一。 看见保罗怎么起反应,并且什么他将做。‘ 因此我们看保罗,他去掉他的钱包,并且同时,他要求我:


我回复了诚实地: 是`。

然后他支付了$30他和安非他命药片并且走了入门。 在那片刻,我感觉象常设在门之外和等待他们完成展示。 我们必须支付$30参加? 如果我们是在我们的自行车,我们明确地会转过来并且回去。 但是`ree-die-yah'保留了我们奥秘。 什么是那`ree-die-yah'那保罗谈论,并且我们需要排队输入? 什么样的澳大利亚节日它是在这个除夕? 在我递了他们对人修补工作柜台之前,我拖延了从我的钱包的a$30,排队,看一看了前a$30。 反回,我们在我们的象从医院逃脱了的患者的左手安排一条花梢手腕带被标记。 什么是那`ree-die-yah'展示?


Anonymous said...
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Raymond said...

Hi, just read some of your posts, I am a fellow Singaporean living back in Sg. Just reading about your ups and downs makes me feel so inspired. But I dun think I will ever be brave enought to do what u have done.

I would love to shake your hand if I have the chance.

Good Luck and safe journey