“You look like the kind of girl who enjoys a good dessert.”
My 28th birthday, up until this point, had been kind of lonely. I had a sad little breakfast of crumbled Wheetabix, and called home which made me feel a tad homesick. The weather was dreary, and to be honest I was so tired the thought of driving to my next destination was pretty unappealing. I’ve spent the last few days driving the Great Ocean Road, and was beginning to get a bit…over it.
But the clouds (somewhat) lifted, and I went to see want all the fuss was about the 12 Apostles.
Turns out they’re pretty worthy of the hype. I spent about an hour just gawking at them.
Then I realized it was lunchtime, and I was hungry (people who are familiar with my love of snacking between meals will be impressed to learn that I have pretty much given that up). So I set out on a driving route that promised cheese, wine and chocolate – three of my loves. What better way to spend a birthday than in the sunshine, wolfing down treats?
It would’ve been a nice way, however it was Sunday, and everything was closed. No cheese tastings, wine sampling, chocolate nibbling. No ANYTHING. And then it started to rain. As I sat on the side of a road, eating crackers with peanut butter straight from the jar, I was ready to toss the whole birthday and call it a day. My final hope was the B&B that I’d booked with the idea of getting a good night’s sleep and some relaxation in, as hostels are starting to wear me down.
This was a solid move on my part. The B&B was in a remote, country location, surrounded by roses, and I had a giant room all to myself. I had tea on the verandah when I arrived, with desserts, and a dog lying at my feet. I read half of my book. And I had an afternoon nap. Heavenly. When the time came for dinner, as I realized that I still hadn’t eaten lunch and I was quite famished, I headed for the car but stopped to chat to the owner and two other guests from Melbourne staying in the farmhouse.
That chat lasted two hours, after these wonderful people invited me in for a drink. By this point, all restaurants were closed, but we luckily found a grocery store still open. They cooked me dinner, and we spent the evening chatting about the differences and similarities between Australia and Canada, and they provided warm company to celebrate my birthday with. It was absolutely lovely. My plans for the evening had initially consisted of finding some sort of cake item, drinking some wine, having a bath and an early night. Instead, I spent hours eating, laughing and making new friends, which really is what the travel experience is all about. Granted, I likely won’t encounter such a fetching looking tub for awhile, but it was totally worth it, and will definitely be a birthday I will look back on fondly. Thanks Mary and Greg!