Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Quest for Mom's Tasmanian Treasure (Part 1 of 4)

I had to end the trip with a treasure hunt. Boys must be boys, and sons must be heroes in the eyes of their mothers.

After leaving New Zealand, I could feel that the time was running out on me. It's like when one is having a good time and wishes it would never end. And unlike money, you can't borrow more time. When a good time is gone; it's gone, and don't let anyone tell you different.

It's hard to find a gift for my mother. She doesn't like jewelry or clothes or other ornaments. But the one thing she does appreciate is abalone.

Abalone is a delicacy in Asia. It's a shellfish that's worth much, tastes good, and is wonderful to eat.

I heard that Tasmania, the furthest southern point of Australia had a lot of it. So, I took a flight from Wellington to Hobart, Tasmania. Along the way though, I had a layover in Melbourne, Australia.

There, an English friend named Luke invited me to stay. I met him in Bali.

He showed kindness to let me sleep in his bed, while he slept on the couch. Nonetheless, his flat was dirty because it was two bedrooms with eight people. There was black mold that was growing in the restroom.

With that said, I still appreciated the hospitality and stayed with him. Luke took some time off work for me, and we ate by the Melbourne river and explored the city. We caught up some. Then, I caught my flight to Hobart - the capital of Australia. (I almost missed my flight - by the way.)

From Hobart, Tasmania, I hitchhiked. A friendly 19 year old Maori (indigenous person of New Zealand) guy picked me up. His name was Jessie. He was doing well in school and was an athlete and worked at the airport.

He drove me around Hobart and pointed out the landmarks of the Tasmanian capital city. That was nice.

I asked him where to dive for abalone. He said he didn't know.

Jessie dropped me off at my hostel. There were a lot of Japanese and German people there. They all seemed to be having a good time.

I asked the hostel owner Theresa, where the abalone was. She said, perhaps on Bruny Island. Well, I suppose that was where I had to go.

I was tired though. I didn't sleep enough in Melbourne; after all, it was a two hour time difference, my flight was late, and I went to bed really late.

I wanted sleep, but I was hungry. So, I grabbed some fish and chips from the pier - where there were heaps of Chinese tourists getting fish and chips. I ordered crumbed scallops and trevella (a fish native only to Tasmania). All the while, it was on my mind - where was I going to get abalone?

The day I arrived into Tasmania; it was nice and sunny and fair and warm. It was slightly windy.

I had the room to myself, even though there were seven other beds. I thought about things that were on my mind for some time now. Although it was early at night, I soon fell asleep and didn't remember my last thought.

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