Planes, trains & automobiles. Oh and boats & buses & … (PART 1)

Otitis Media

Sadly this isn’t the name of an upscale Manhattan media agency but rather a latin term meaning – ones middle ear is very unhappy 😦 One happened to discover said condition upon landing in Hobart, Tasmania about three weeks ago. Suffice to say there was definitely a lot more than just ONE(!) expletive being unleashed by this author as I landed. Ouch!

So off to the doctors I went. What would you reckon might be something you don’t want to hear from a doctor? You know apart from the obvious such as – “you know, you’ll laugh but I’ve blasted well forgotten to reorder the lube, we’re all out. Anyway let’s get started” That aside how about just a good old declaration by doc of…

“Oh dear!”

As he peered into my left ear he further quipped

“Well you’re not flying for a week. You don’t have any travel to do, do you?”

He sounded so upbeat & perky I didn’t have the heart to upset him by telling him that I actually had three flights to make in the next couple of days starting with one…oh, you know, in about three hours!! Oh sorry I should have now more accurately said – I did have some flights to make.

Now ear’s a predicament. What to do?

So let me get this right I mused – I can’t fly. Hmm…”I am vexed” to quote one of my fav lines from Gladiator. Then I went through the standard range of emotions associated with emotional upheaval.  Much like when I heard Arrested Development had been axed.

SHOCK – DISBELIEF – DENIAL – PAIN – REFLECTION – (& finally) ACCEPTANCE

But finally there was that acceptance. This could even be the start of an adventure of sorts I thought. You know like the Long Way Round with Ewan McGregor and the other bloke except without a celebrity, or, um motorbikes or any glamour whatsoever, or a film crew or…

ear_map

DAY 1. Hobart – Melbourne. Car + Overnight Ferry. 730Kms (450 miles)

IMAG3315

Two thumbs up if you have NO IDEA what the h&ll you are getting yourself into!

So with the bravado and misplaced glee of a WW1 embarking soldier off I set. From Salamanca Market in Hobart for a three hour drive up to Devonport. There I was to board the Spirit of Tasmania overnight ship to Melbourne. I thought this was sure to be ferry interesting!

Sunshine & tunes (apparently)

Sunshine & tunes (apparently)

The drive was fine. Had the radio blearing but couldn’t really hear it. I was still pretty much deaf in my left ear after the flight. Incident free I arrived in Devonport and my trusty Android phone & Google Maps deposited me at the dock in good time.

My friends know me to not be the world’s greatest fan of cruising. Not that I wish ill on those (and there are MANY millions) that love cruising but it’s just that I’d rather, well – rather kinda do anything else but. So the irony as I boarded wasn’t lost on me but I was at peace and – as mentioned – in that ‘acceptance’ phase after a long drive. It wasn’t until I started to explore amidst the throng on-board that a bead or two of sweat formed on my brow. Wow how lucky was I to have even been able to get on I thought. See for yourself below. Of course it goes without saying that the cold sweats could have also been from the buffet.

PHEW! That was close...

PHEW! Just squeezed on…

We docked at 6:30am in Port Melbourne. As I was gathering up my linen and bedding to steal I suddenly noticed a foreboding note on the back of the door.

DO NOT REMOVE ANY BEDDING FROM THIS VESSEL. BEDWARE IS PROTECTED BY ELECTRONIC MONITORING!

Holy man-overboard Batman! – Now that my friends is an Electric Blanket!!

Tune in soon when I travel a further 2800KMs (1730 miles) from Melbourne to Kangaroo Island, South Australia & back just two days later. But that’s in Part 2 – coming soon.

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2 thoughts on “Planes, trains & automobiles. Oh and boats & buses & … (PART 1)

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