February 27, 2015

Diving in the Great Barrier Reef

When I was in Cairns, I finally made it happen: I went diving in the Great Barrier Reef. It has been on my bucketlist since I started diving more than a year ago and I'm so happy I got to experience it. Before the GBR, I dived in Belgium and the Netherlands and once in Spain. Spain was a colorful reef sure, but you honestly can't compare the two. Ofcourse, I don't have that much experience yet so I can't say that much about it but I can tell you about my underwateradventure.

I originally started diving with CMAS but since almost every diving company in Australia (or the rest of the world) is Padi, I decided to get my PADI advanced under water certification. I was working in Cairns and had only one day off each week so I searched for a company that could give me my certification by doing two day tours. Down Under Dive did a perfect job. When I got on the boat in the morning on the first day, we got to know our instructor (Kelvin) and he gave us a welldetailed briefing and told us what was expected of us.

I won't make it too technical because that won't be interesting for most of you, but what I liked most about my training dives was that Kelvin also integrated some games and other fun bits. We swam through a ring as dolphins and did a counting game to test our intelligence 20m below the surface.

For the second day of my advanced program, I rented a camera and was able to make some amazing pictures. Every picture in this post was taken by myself, except the one on the top which my diving buddy took of me. I had a lot of fun identifying all of the fish I saw later. Besides everything you see on these pictures, I also saw and cuddled a Napoleon fish, swam with multiple turtles, saw some reef sharks and one stingray.

As you can imagine, I really want to discover more of this beautiful reef and I hope I'll still have the chance later on. But for now, I'm already so glad that I got to experience at least one small part of it.

(I dived in the Norman and North Hastings reef and got there with Down Under Dive, based in Cairns)

February 20, 2015

My life in pictures #13

Yes, I am still alive! I survived 3 months in Australia already without getting stung, bit or eaten. (Well, if you don't count mosquitos.) I think that's quite an accomplishment! Keep reading if you would like to know what I've been up to for the last 2 months. By the way, you can follow me on instagram here.

20/12: Just a selfie, to praise the fabulous weather in Mackay and my new playsuit and necklace. 22/12: I got myself a cheap car (which I got rid of again two weeks later), it was quite the experience driving on the left side of the road.

22/12: I drove the car from Mackay to Airlie Beach where I stayed in an awesome hostel called Backpackers by the bay. These fellas visited every day. 24/12: Beautiful view, right next to the lagoon in Airlie Beach.

February 03, 2015

Harry Potter tag

Seriously, how did I not come across this tag earlier? I saw it on Ines' blog and I filled it out immediately (but scheduled it a bit later haha). I tag every Harry Potter fan to do this one too.

Favorite book?
This is a hard question, especially because I kind of grew up with the books and I loved each one in a different stage of my life. I think I'll go for the 6th one: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. I think it's mainly because I have read this book so much, I even did a huge high school project about it (I compared the English and French versions) and I'm highly aware of every single detail in it. Even though it contains a horrible event - I think we all know what I'm talking about-, there's also a lot of humor in it.

Favorite movie?
Definitely the first one. I can't even begin to describe how magical it all was (and still is) when I first saw this movie. The letters from Hogwarts, picking out a wand, the first dinner, flying lessons, wingardium leviosa, ... The directors really translated this book perfectly and I think they did a brilliant job casting all of the actors. I will always love everything about it.

Least favorite book and movie?
Nope. Just nope.

Parts that made you cry?
I am one hundred percent serious when I tell you I can't even count them all. Since I don't want to spoil, I'll just say that every death affected me a lot (especially two of the funerals).

January 09, 2015

Read & Watched 2014: part 4

As always, time goes so fast! The last two months were mainly spent in Australia so I haven't had that much time to catch up but (spoiler) I did make at least one of my goals. Also, as you might notice, I spent a couple of weeks looking after a 6 and 8 year old. Not that I can't enjoy Barbie otherwise... Again, send some recommendations my way! (Bold = favorite)

January 04, 2015

My life in pictures #12

Happy New Year!! I hope you had fun. The first Australian MLIP is finally here. I've been loving (almost) every second of being here and especially the weather! Take a look at what I've been up to (more recent pictures will appear soon).

23/11: My first few days were spent in Sydney and ofcourse you have to see the famous landmarks while you're there. I loved seeing the Opera House in real life. - 24/11: There are a lot of art installations in Sydney and Forgotten Songs is one of my favorites so far.

28/11: After Sydney, I went on a ranch course with Outbackpackers. We went on a horse ride and had tea in the middle of the outback. - 29/11: Just a part of the shed, skulls & bones are nothing special over there.