lauantai 25. kesäkuuta 2016

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO ME!


365! That is the number of days I’ve been travelling so far. 365 days ago I left my home country Finland behind and started my big journey. Journey that has been one hell of a ride! Malaysia, Indonesia and now Australia. I must say that I’ve honoured the name of my blog pretty well as at first my plan was to come straight to Oz but as you know it didn’t quite happen like that.

I have confronted many ups and downs. I’ve been in situations I’ve never thought of being. I have found myself lost in the middle of nowhere but I have survived. Even when been lost I have found something good in those moments. I've found something in me. I’ve learned. Heck I slept in a living room of a local house in Indonesia and enjoyed their hospitality after bus driver happily informed me that this is my last stop. Moment that I never forget among all the other great moments. There are so amazing people all over the world. I’ve been blessed to meet at least a tiny amount of those this world carries. Nature. I’ve seen many sunsets with a surrounding that looks almost unreal. I’ve climbed volcanos in the middle of a pitch dark night to witness the most beautiful sunrises this Mother Earth offers. I’ve seen how people can destroy nature. How people can destroy themselves. I’ve experienced history, culture, art, food, people, everything I can imagine. World is such a big playground but during my travels I’ve also learned that distances really don’t matter. Just go! It’s our playground and it’s ours to enjoy!

Cliché or not but that really isn't bullshit when people tell that you just can’t understand certain things if you don’t travel first. There are things you just have to experience to understand and feel them. And to do so you really need different kind of travel than 2 weeks in Bulgaria’s Sunny Beach. You really need to back your stuff and start wandering. And that reminds me of another cliché quote but yet it’s so much true. “Not all who wander are lost"

After all this being said, after 365 best days of my life, I still crave for more. 


And more will I see :) Going with the flow and takki auki!

Enjoying the Queensland winter at Surfers Paradise in Gold Coast. Eyes at the future and all the surprises it will bring to me!

sunnuntai 24. huhtikuuta 2016

CAIRNS WORLD CUP SUM UP

Tzadaam! Race is over and we have three happy winners. Matt Walker won the Juniors, Rachel Atherton women and Loic Bruni took his first ever World Cup win! Congratulations to everyone :)

Day was really beautiful and there was no sign of clouds or rain. Perfect conditions for racers, spectators and media to enjoy the race. Only one bad news was that the junior cup leader Finnley Iles couldn't compete as he broke his arm. Shiiaaat! He was totally flying on the course when doing practise runs.
Volunteers selling mosquito repellent and sunscreen
Fox stand presenting their forks
Sadly this rig was just hanging in the tent on race day  
My favorite athlete the Italian National Champion Veronika Widmann

I though I would take tons of photos during the race but then I realised that fuck, I want to see and enjoy the race so I just took few photos and rest of the time I was yelling like crazy and making noise with my bell and horn. That's the right world cup spirit right?!

Instagoodness
The race went well without any major crashes. Steve Smith got unlucky and his run was ruined by flat front tire. Still he crossed the finish line with a long wheelie. Stylish as always. The number one in qualifications Troy Brosnan seemed to take the win leading in every splits but the last 300 metres took it's toll and Troy ended up on second place just +0.493 seconds back from Bruni. The disappointment was tangible.

Vige Gaetan (10th Junior Men) making his way thru The Generator
Ruffin Thibaut (60th Men Elite) pedalling like crazy towards finish line
The sad man. But after the first expression he put a little smile on his face
And the happy man who took his first World Cup WIN!
If Bruni enjoyed his first win, this champ was celebrating her 28th win with a margin of 7 seconds before Tracey Hannah. She's unstoppable at the moment.
After the awards were over it was time to prepare for the Cairns nightlife. It was quite cool to have drinks with the buds like Brendan Fairclough. To sum this up the whole World Cup event was a really great experience and I will definitely remember it always! I still got some deconstruction tomorrow and a thank you BBQ offered by Mountainbike Australia.
 
And for everyone's information: THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS ARE NEXT YEAR HERE IN CAIRNS SO BE HERE OR BE NOWHERE! IT'S GONNA BE BIG!

SEE YA IN 2017! 

perjantai 22. huhtikuuta 2016

CAIRNS DOWNHILL WORLD CUP PREPARATIONS

As I told you in previous post I was heading to Cairns for the UCI Downhill World Cup. You have probably seen my posts already in social media about the event and thats GOOD! I'm going to recap here shortly what I've been up to here.

I started working on Monday in construction team offering my absolute expertise in this field. We built few platforms for the TV crew on the XCO course. After we finished the platforms I saw one guy struggling to decide how to line the course so I gave a hand and did some lining as well. All the riders can now thank me of that gnarly lining before hell's gate! xD Next thing was to sit and relax. Working at the WC event ain't too stressful at least for the casual workforce.  Before the first day was done I put few signs on place at the finish gate, installed a grippy flooring at the DH start gate and set up the pallets to the ground at the bike wash corner. People were totally excited about the colours we put there. Few shades of green gives Aussies a little mental cutting edge against other nationalities. Time to call day done and open a beer. Cheers!

On Tuesday I was in broadcast crew. This was quite good exercise as our job was to pull loads of TV cable from the bottom of the hill to the TV cameras. Friday was also broadcasting. All the cables were on the hill so now we were taking the cameras on right spots.

Camera spot 6 to truck. We are on and rolling. Sweet!
Thursday was exciting day as I was one of the 41 course marshals. I started climbing towards my spot at 7:00am and because of the slight delay in practise I got my ass back to the event village at about 6:00pm. Quite long day but who cares. I was able to see all the pros practising their lines and for my surprise my marshal point showed to be quite interesting as who else than Duncan Philpott, Sven Martin and Tim Bardsley-Smith was keeping me company for several hours. It was so cool to chat with these sport photograph GURUS!! And as cherry on top of everything I also met the mountainbike legend Rod Warner! 

Morning on qualification day. Never get bored of these views here in Queensland.


Martin and Tim as snipers behind the net. Nice camouflage bros!
video
Claudio Caluori and Troy Brosnan doing their course preview

Massive huck before the Paw Paw's

Tomorrow is the Big Day as the racers are going to fly through the tropical jungle of Cairns here in Queensland Australia and settle who will be the winner of round 2. Lets hope we have a nice sunny weather and everything goes well.

PS. I have tomorrow off so I can concentrate on the race and shoot some photos and just fully enjoy the World Cup atmosphere! Stay tuned and remember to watch the Redbull live stream from redbulltv.com ! See ya laterz!

keskiviikko 6. huhtikuuta 2016

HAPPY 88th FARMDAY TO ME!!

Super stoked right now! Im so excited to inform that my hard time in Merbein is done and I have completed my 88 days at farms to be eligible to get my 2nd year visa to Australia! Woohoo! 8) The morning got a real kick start as my boss gave me a shot of moonshine to celebrate the day and said "Welcome to manhood" :D What a man!
Ok, my hard time isn't actually over coz I have a good job and I have to save some currency. Im planning to stay few more weeks until I head back north to Cairns for the downhill world cup event! Sweeeet!! So looking forward to it!

But lets take a quick look what's been going on.

After my holiday with my parents I came back to Merbein to earn some money and celebrate my 30th birthday! Ya man! People won’t believe that I turned 30. And I never believed that I would celebrate that day while travelling. I think I have never said this before so now its the time. Its never too late to travel and im glad I made my decision. This has been the most amazing thing I’ve done in my life. 

I think most of you really don't know how this stuff works here. Lets take a closer look what's happening. What is it like to do your hard time and earn your 88 days of rural work for the 2nd year visa? Not the simplest of questions but this is my point of view from where I have worked.

Between 3:30-7:30 depending of your job the alarm goes off and it's time to face another day in paradise. Now don't laugh when I say this but winter is coming and the temperature can be at +10C in the morning and that is FREEZING. I have never slept with clothes on but here I started wearing shorts and t-shirt so I wont wake up in the middle of the night shaking. Just one month back the situation was totally different. Temperature didn't go below +30C even during nights.

After quick brekkie and making my lunch (2 sandwiches with 1)tuna or 2)eggs) I jump to a van and driver drops us to work.

Then depending of your job, put your headphones on if doing pruning or picking some fruits or like me, jump to ATV/tractor and start messing around. Unlike in Finland there is no legal break after 2h of work and so on. Fuck those laws and rules. No one cares about those things here. Only thing you have to worry about is your work. My basic day is from 10-12h and usually I have one 10 to 20min break. Sometimes I eat my lunch while driving. Longest day I've done was 17h and after 3h of sleep another 12h shift. And forget about having weekends off. When the season is on, we work! During past 4 weeks I've had 3 days off and normal weekly hours are around from 75 to 80. Obviously at first that was like hell. It's +40C outside and the sun is trying to melt me. Normal water consumption has been around 5-7l per day. Pretty crazy aye?

Taking empty crates to grape pickers
My Malaysian fans. They are always super stoked when I speak some malay with them! I even got invitation to Borneo to climb the highest mountain Kota Kinabalu.

Anyway it is so weird how human can adapt to situations like this. Well not everyone, I have seen that. Some people cross their limits and just cracks and not always is that nice to see. I've been thinking how hard it was sometimes to survive the days back in Finland with coffee breaks and proper lunch break but here the times just flies and boom I notice that I have worked 5h without break. Also the 2 day weekend felt always waaaayyy too short to gain your energy back and feel ready for the next week at work. At the moment we have a situation and not all the grapes are ready to be picked so im having my second day off in a row now. Exceptional! And guess what? Feels like I haven't worked in ages. I've been able to do stuff or just do nothing. Actually yesterday I asked if I could help somewhere else because I didn't want to have second day off. Totally weird state of existence. This is also probably why im writing this new post at the moment hehe :D

Downsides of this lifestyle is some sort of lack in personal life. I don't have the energy to socialise every evening drinking beer and playing goon pong but lately it has been better as we start working few hours later. And I have set my mind to work hard and earn money so that hasn't bothered me too much. Some people have even declined to take certain job offers because of the long days and not being able to party after that. Also I haven't been eating the most healthy food coz sometimes I just haven't had the energy to cook. Easier to drop by Maccas or KFC after work and go to bed. But I think those times are gone now as season is going to end soon.

Playing beer pong with my Swedish bro Simon. We were on fire and won like at least 13,8 games!

Ok, now we have survived a day at farm and we can cross yet another day off from the calendar. But what happens after work? People gather around to garden, front porch or living room to watching tv/movies and enjoying the free time. Life in Merbein is really simple. There is one market with bottle shop, one pub, ATM and 2 takeaway "restaurants". We have a river which is the border between Victoria (where Merbein is) and New South Wales. I think everyone knows this river thing already :D Within 15min drive we got the rural city of Mildura. Funny thing, although it's so close to us we rarely go there. Well, at least I don't spend too much money to nonsense here :D



Sometime in the evening usually between 7 and 9 the job board for next day comes up and there you can see what time your pick up leaves and where you work. For me it's only the wake up time that interests me coz im one of the lucky guys (meaning working hard and not fucking things up) that work only for one farmer. Trusted dude I am!

That's pretty much it. Doing your required farm days is doing like hard time in jail but more fun! :D Anyway im so excited and looking forward to go somewhere else and start travelling again. After all as I said this place is quite dead. I'll tell you guys more when it's time to move. Cheers all!

sunnuntai 28. helmikuuta 2016

Work hard, play harder

Christmas went and so did new year. I ended up celebrating those events here in Merbein. It was really nice to be here with all the good people but not everything went like in Strömssö. I broke my hand on Christmas and got a nice pink cast on it. Fuccc! I was so "&%+!## pissed off !

Enjoying Christmas dinner at the hostel with my favourite twins.

Life with one hand was familiar to me and it sucked as much as before. Being broke didn't help me because now I couldn't work normally. I did some random tasks here at the hostel so I could cover my rent which was good. I did cleaning, raking, built new bunk beds and I even did lawn mowing one day.

It was almost February and I was counting days to one of the best events Im going to take part this year. Rainbow Serpent 2016 festival! I was also counting the days how long I had to wear the cast. At first the doctors said that 3 weeks is enough as it is only a small fracture. So I went to see the doc before I left Merbein and zadam, they didn't even take the x-ray as at first was the plan. The doc looked at my cast, gave props to the drawings and told me to wear that another 2 weeks. SHIT! Im going to hit the festival with the cast in my hand...

Now thinking afterwards I didn't even realise I had my cast at the festival. And the pink colour gave me an idea of the costume, Festival Fairy! :D


Roxy and Festival Fairy


Enjoying the sunset and last night.


The festival was sooo crazy! People were dressed up and filled with good festival spirit. I have never experienced anything like this event! Need to come back next year! :D


HOLIDAY FROM BACKPACKING


My parents came to see me for two weeks here in Australia in beginning of February. That meant a nice holiday for me from backpacker lifestyle. And finally I also got rid of my cast! I was so happy when I walked away from the hospital that I just ran to the trolley. I was sooo stoked to be free again!

On the roof of Shrine of Remembrance
Some of the decos of Chinese New Year in Melbourne
The Tigers!
During the 2 weeks I showed Melbourne around, we drove the Great Ocean Road, visited Grampians national park and Yarra Valley. At first I was a bit skeptical how the time will go but everything went really nice. Anyway we haven't seen each other in 7 months.

Road trip started naturally from Melbourne. It was my first time driving a car in Australia when we left the rental place. Quite interesting way to come familiar with driving the "wrong" side, in the heart of Melbourne. But I don't know was it that I haven't been driving a car in 7 months or what but it was actually really easy to adjust yourself driving from right side. I only mixed ONCE side indicator and windscreen wiper whiskers. Nice! Afterwards I actually think that driving the wrong side is better. Or it can be the Australian infrastructure as well what makes me think that because the roads and roundabouts are much wider so its really easy and convenient to drive.


Great Ocean Road and the Apostles
South Victoria suffered some bushfires some weeks ago. Along the Great Ocean Road
Friendly wallaby
Grampians National Park and one of the many lookouts
Signal station at Cape Otway, Great Ocean Road
We spotted some Koalas on our way to Cape Otway

FARMLIFE


So I came back to Merbein to earn some money and celebrate my 30th birthday! Ya man! People won’t believe that I turned 30. And I never believed that I would celebrate that day while travelling. I think I have never said this before so now its the time. Its never too late to travel and I'm glad I made my decision. This has been the most amazing thing I’ve done in my life. 

Work work work. I’ve done lately quite crazy hours. I got over 80h in a week and the longest day was 17h :D DAMN! At least we had some really good pizza and chips after work. Now my plan is to make some money to be able to travel somewhere after this. When and where is still a mystery. I have some things going on but I reveal my plans some other time.


C ya laterz!

torstai 24. joulukuuta 2015

G'arvo and welcome to Australia! This doco of my stories is a fair dinkum!

Australian slang is weird. I remember when two locals came talking to me in Cairns. After one minute of hearing them I realised I have no idea what my mates were saying. Probably something to do with beer or goon. Goon is a word for cheap wine. I mean cheap. Real cheap. 4 litres of that "heavenly" juice can cost just 10AUD. To my Finnish mates it makes about 6,6 euros. Try to find 4l box of wine in ALKO! Les impossibles.

Ok so what's going on here in Australia? I flew from Bali to Cairns which is located in north of the state of Queensland. Reason for not writing in a long time again is that as soon as I got myself in Australia I got this reeaally weird and annoying flu or what the devil it was! For nearly 4 weeks I was just chillin around coz there was no energy in my system. After getting better I managed to do some waterfall trips and wakeboarding but then again my luck was against me and I bent my knee! Oh my dear f*cking videoplayer.

But yea it was anyway mostly good times in Cairns. Did sum camping and like I said couple of waterfall trips and wakeboarding. Behana Gorge was really nice waterfall. It took about 3h to jump from rock to rock along the river until we reached to actual waterfall. There was one a bit unfortunate and scary moment when my friend slipped down a small series of 2 waterfalls by accident. She hurt her feet by hitting it in a underwater rock but as I am the 'Man of The Year' I carried her to the main waterfall and back to our minivan. Naah it was not that bad just couple of kilometres. No biggies.
The main waterfall was beautiful set of smaller ones. And we also jumped from about 15 metres high rock to water. It was cool! There IS a video of me jumping and I was supposed to get it via facebook but as my memory is closer to goldfish's I dont remember the name of the girl who took it sooooo... Thats about it then.

Making our way to the waterfall

Standing in the middle of stream. And it was really slippery!

Behana Gorge 

You really don't meet many Finns while travelling. I've met during my 6 months travelling maybe 5 Finns. And waddap, two of them in Cairns in the same hostel I stayed! And actually a third one as well! It was crazy thing. I was just sitting and watching a movie when suddenly I heard someone asking "Tuukka?". And there she was. A girl from Finland who RECOGNIZED me from my blog pictures! Haha! That was the first of my many up coming fan meets! Awesome! Im famous! Ok back to the two others. We did a really nice full day trip with Emmi, Iina and Floris. Floris is a dutch guy with a beard. And funny. The trip included tree watching (a really damn big one), Millaa Millaa aka Loreal photoshoot waterfall, couple of other sights and a lunch break. Oh yea and also spotting tiny little turtles!
video



Hmm okey I have now tried to upload couple of short video clips and photos but the wifi has been soo sloooow recently that Im just gonna skip that. I'll add them later. Maybe. Hopefully.

I'll write down here that I need to add photos at least from the beer pong tournament and BBQ night.

After Cairns I flew to Melbourne to meet my friend Max. Did little partying and of course tried to find some work coz the numbers in our bank account were closer to 0 than ehmm million. After many calls and emails and 9h bus ride we found ourselves in Merbein, a small town near Mildura. Here we have stayed now for 3 weeks. I've been picking oranges, cutting onion flowers, cutting and covering wine bushes. Shit work with shit salary. Ha yea actually I got kicked out from the orange farm one friday. We didnt get along with that mental tractor driver who was shouting if he saw even one orange hanging in the middle of a tree. "100% coin guys I want 100% coin! Pick em all!" And I can tell that you just cant reach every orange. The trees are really mean bitches with sharp branches. For my surprise I was assigned to go there again next monday. Oh boy but was there even bigger surprise when I got there. I heard that the tractor guy might have got some feedback from his boss and for the next 4 days he was really nice to me :D Even brought me and Max longer ladders. There you go! Don't mess with me!

So now we are here at the hostel and we have lots of cool people living with us. I think it will be nice christmas here. We have food, presents and other cool things to do. No snow but instead from 35 to over 40 degrees every day. Gettin my tanning! Ugh!

New year will be celebrated probably near Melbourne. There is one nice festival called Tanglewood. That will be a different experience. New years Eve in a festival. Im in!

For now I wish merry christmas and happy new year to all the readers! Year 2015 was a year of big decisions, lots of planning and great great experiences. I think that year 2016 will be full on with even greater experiences! 

Keep calm and takki auki!










keskiviikko 18. marraskuuta 2015

Bali, surfers paradise and much more!

Business goes as usual says stockbroker when shit hits the fan. I have to inform you that while being abroad this long I have sadly forgot how to write in Finnish so now on this will be just English! =D
Just kiddin’. I haven’t forgot Finnish language. Its just that increasing number of foreign people want to follow my blog so I decided to make their reading experience a bit easier. Soo…. This is my ninth week in Australia and Cairns. Woot! Things haven’t gone like I thought but more about that later. Lets recap ummmmm Bali at first I guess? Yaman! Bali was f*cking aaaamazing! I stayed most of my time in Canggu and it was so fun. Ridiculous scooter riding and surfing and partying on the beach! Wowzaa!

Our hostel - The Temple
Lets start with surfing. Took my first lesson there and on my surprise I nailed it like immediately! We had couple of other people from our hostel doing the lesson at the same time and the teachers were also from our hostel. Awesome times! The next day I went to do some surfing again but I realised one shitty thing. I don’t know how the hell pick the right waves! Every time I got up the wave just died after and when I got a good wave I smashed. But after all I got couple of good waves and that was enough to give the adrenaline rush! It is simply so cool!


Day trip to Uluwatu
Roads in Bali have nice decos.
This picture is nuts!
Nice looking restaurant. It was abandoned though.


The biggest wtf experience was when I found out there is a actual bike park in Bali. I was super stoked and I was already hitting the trails in my mind. So I went to talk to these guys and they even promised to private shuttle me to the hills so I don’t have to wait for newbies if I take normal group session. YA MAN! Unfortunately I got sick the day before and I had to cancel my session :(( After I got better I experienced another drawback with tarmac. Some wounds here and there so no riding during my stay in Bali but also no more surfing! I was super bummed. I tried to keep positive vibes up thinking that I will come back here and can do these things later cause sure I am coming back!
Oh and I also had troubles with my phone (AGAIN) as a big ass wave hit the shore and made my phone feel very moist inside. It took some effort to sort out as employees in Oppo stores really don’t speak English and my bahasa indonesia isn’t quite that good yet.

What else… I drove to waterfalls and some beaches. Met couple of evil monkeys that stole and broke stuff from tourists. Pretty basic.

Gitgit Waterfall

Same same but different
The most beautiful and relaxing guesthouse I've ever been in! @Uluwatu

Not a bad view when taking morning piss.

Lots of signs and still got lost every day. Or night.
Dreamland beach Uluwatu.
View from Old Man's bar to the beach where I did my surfing in Canggu.
Evil monkey!

First time during my travels as my visa was running out I felt uncomfortable. I knew I need to leave Indonesia and its beautiful nature and all these nice people. I need to start thinking how to spend money more careful and start making my own food again! Filling a noodle cup with hot water doesn’t count as making food.

My last days in Indonesia I spent in Gili Trawangan with my German friend Max. Gili Trawangan, enough said.
Enjoying the sunset @Gili T
Hey boyz, lets make a road! @Gili T

It was my last night in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia. I still remember my last meal. Nasi Goreng and a little chocolate cake with ice cream. I laughed that few weeks before I was so full of rice and shit and now I knew Im gonna miss the same shit. Its just so good. Then I took a shower at my friends hostel and took Uber to airport.

All good stories have an end and so has this. But its still to come because it was time to move to Australia!! :DD This was just an end of a chapter. Keep rockin!!!!

Street art @Kuta
Shrine