RT Cunningham


Australia - One of the Many Countries I would Like to Visit

Australia koala It’s an unfortunate fact that I’ll probably never visit the continental country of Australia. It’s not high on my priority list and that’s okay. I have no relatives or friends living in any of its territories. None that I know of, that is.

When I was still single (before 1985), I could have gone anywhere in the world. My priorities were different back then but Australia still wasn’t on my to-do list.

Australia - A Near Miss

I was on a military base in Hawaii when I was still single. I went on a single Western Pacific deployment after a few months. My rotation date back to the continental United States gave me only two years, not enough time for a second deployment.

We were given a list of all the countries our ship would stop in, some with port calls and some without. Perth, Western Australia, was on the list but they removed it from the list just before the deployment began. Some of my fellow service members went there on the deployment before that and the deployment after that.

Australia - Films and Videos

I’ve never seen a kangaroo or a koala up close. You would think I’d see them in a zoo or something but I haven’t.

What little I know about Australia, I learned from film, video and Australians I met while I was in the military. Trust me, it isn’t a lot. I haven’t talked to any Australian expats in the Philippines and I probably never will.

Watching the first Crocodile Dundee movie (from 1986) again recently renewed my interest in Australia. Probably more so than anything newer I could watch.

Changing Plans

I’m living on only my military pension. I don’t get enough money to just arbitrarily travel to one place or another. That may change in several years when both my wife (Josie) and I start drawing our social security pensions.

When I have the money, will I put Australia near the top of my priority list? I don’t know but I don’t think so. I lived in the United States for 45 years of my life and I didn’t visit every state in the union. And I probably won’t do that either. I don’t like the tropics because of the high humidity but I don’t the extreme cold either.

It all depends on how much the both of us will get every month and where we’ll be living at the time. It could be here in the Philippines and it could be somewhere else, like with one of the families of our children.

Australians make more money, on average, than most Americans. They also have a higher cost of living in general, so it kind of balances out. Josie and I will get paid in American dollars, not Australian dollars, so it obviously won’t go as far. Visiting Australia will probably cost more than we can afford. If not…

New Zealand isn’t that far from Australia. I would probably enjoy it as much as Australia or maybe even more.

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By RT Cunningham
November 16, 2017
Travel and Transportation