Camino

each journey starts with a single step

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Each journey starts with a single step – Confucious 

We have broken up this European adventure into stages and we are approaching our final stage. A week from today we will have completed (hopefully) Day 1 of our biggest journeys: 800 km of walking!

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It is beginning to sink in and we are a wee bit nervous as we have been “travelling” and not really “training” for it. But at the same time, we are pretty excited as we have reached our fundraising target already so anything else we receive now is an added bonus so if you are interested in supporting our charity, please donate here: https://give.everydayhero.com/au/wise-monkeys-abroad

Who are we raising money for?

We are raising money for FAST (Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics Australia). FAST is dedicated to finding a cure for Angelman Syndrome and related disorders through funding research, education, and advocacy.

FAST logo Aus

What are we raising awareness about?

We are raising awareness for a condition called Angelman Sydnrome which David’s older brother has. So this  is very close to our hearts! Please read more about Angelman Syndrome here: http://www.cureangelman.org.au/whatisangelman/ and more importantly,

Please help spread the word about Angelman Syndrome. 

And so now we count down… day by day …then step by step…. until we complete 800 km!

Wish us luck and thank you to everyone who has shown us their support!

 

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weekend walks: west head in ku-ring-gai chase national park

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We were graced again today with blue skies and sunshine. The weather was a pleasant 20° Celsius without any wind this week (thank goodness). We drove to Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park so we could see Red Hand Cave and enjoy a walk to West Head Lookout and back.

The Red Hand Cave is Aboriginal rock painting and is dated to be about 2000 years old. It was very fascinating to see.

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The view out to sea from West Head Lookout was stunning! We could just see Barrenjoey Lighthouse….

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Our eagerness to walk (also as part of practice for the Camino), we thought we should challenge ourselves more. And we did. We headed down, down and further down til we reached West Head Beach, which we were SO pleased to do! It was so picture perfect and serene with calm blue waters in between us and Barrenjoey Lighthouse.

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But then, it was time to head back UP! As easy and lovely as it was to head down, walking back up was completely a different story. Our only highlight was spotting 3 kookaburras in a tree at once – unfortunately we weren’t quick enough to snap a photo of the 3 of them. So one will have to do 🙂 IMG_3323IMG_3317

Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park is approximately 25 km north of Sydney, covering about 154km². Car entry costs $11 per day and gates open at sunrise and close at sunset. 

Hope you all have a lovely week ahead!

 

walking to raise awareness and money for angelman syndrome

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It’s official and now in the open. Le has resigned from her job so we can go travelling for several months! But our bigger news is that we are planning to also embark on the Camino Walk.

To some of our fellow blogger followers who have walked the Camino or are walking the Camino or planning to walk the Camino, you probably already know this news. But what we are revealing for the first time is that we are walking it for charity amongst a few other personal and spiritual (non-religious) reasons!

The walk starts in St Jean Pied de Port in the Pyrenees in France and will end 800 km “down the road” in Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Yes, you read it right, we are walking 800 km – it will be over 7 or so weeks.

The Way of St James has only recently been on our radar to do. It began in 2008, when we first heard someone was doing it. It sounded intriguing and sounded like it would be an astounding achievement. Then not long after, we heard of another person doing it and it just sounded too daunting. A few years on, David read “The Pilgrimage” by Paulo Coelho which sparked our interest and before you know it, everyone around us seems to have done it. So last year, we made a pact that we would do this pilgrimage before we turned 40 at it is also on the UNESCO Heritage List. You all know how much we love our UNESCO Heritage List 🙂

After a few highs and lows of the past year, it dawned on us – we needed to do it soon…. So we decided that we would do it in September!

Now to share with you about the charity we have chosen to walk for:

Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics  (FAST) Australia

FAST logo Aus

Why these guys? 

 

David’s oldest brother has Angelman Syndrome. And we want to raise not only money for research but also raise awareness about the condition. It really is as simple as that!

So all we ask of our readers and followers is to read up about Angelman Syndrome at the FAST Website: http://www.cureangelman.org.au/ and then do ONE of the following (of course more if you like):

  1. Share what you have learnt with someone, have a conversation about it,
  2. Share something about Angelman Syndrome on your social media,
  3. Share our fundraising page (https://give.everydayhero.com/au/wise-monkeys-abroad) amongst your family and friends
  4. Support us on the 800 km walk by donating – proceeds go directly to FAST (except for transaction fees taken by the banks),
  5. Reblog this post or share on your various social media to spread the word of what we are doing, OR
  6. Encourage us through your comments on our blog, Twitter and/or Facebook as we prepare and face the 800 km.

Thank you in advance for you helping us spread the word and raising money for Angelman Syndrome!

More posts to follow about the Camino itself.

 

 

 

 

 

travel memories on our tree

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We LOVE this time of year because we LOVE Christmas! It’s 2 weeks from Christmas and our tree is now up – yes it is an artificial one 😉

Our humble Christmas tree that may need to be upgraded if we get more ornaments
Our humble Christmas tree that may need to be upgraded if we get more ornaments

As we added the different ornaments, we began reminiscing about our travels because some of our decoration are our “souvenirs” from our travels. It was only back in 2009, while we are at the Empire State Building did we think it would be a good tradition to start.

And since then, we have added several more to our tree. It’s not always easy to find Christmas ornaments, as it can depend not only the time of year but also the place you visit. But these are not the only things we pick up as our souvenirs 🙂

Not King Kong but Santa scaling the Empire State Building
Not King Kong but Santa scaling the Empire State Building
A knitted llama from Taquile Island on Lake Titicaca in Peru
A knitted llama from Taquile Island on Lake Titicaca in Peru
Two Turtle Doves from China
Two Turtle Doves from China
From a ceramic workshop in China
From a ceramic workshop in China
We picked this up from Grand Turks & Caicos while we were on our Caribbean Cruise
We picked this up from Grand Turks & Caicos while we are our Caribbean Cruise
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
Jiminy Cricket DisneyWorld
Jiminy Cricket, DisneyWorld
Mr & Mrs Potatohead
Mr & Mrs Potatohead
Indigenous Australian Art from the Red Centre
Indigenous Australian Art from the Red Centre
Evil eye from Istanbul, Turkey
Evil eye from Istanbul, Turkey
The cames on the sand dunes in Dubai
The camels on the sand dunes in Dubai
Kiwi Santa from NZ
Kiwi Santa from NZ
A crest from France
A crest from France
An Estonian hut
An Estonian hut
Blue skies in Singapore
Blue skies in Singapore
St Nicholas from Russia
St Nicholas from Russia
From Latvia with love
From Latvia with love
A camino pilgrim
A camino pilgrim
From Switzerland
From Switzerland

Our families are in Sydney so Christmas is great because we get to spend time with both sides – minor downside is that its always hot! Maybe one day, we get to experience a true white Christmas somewhere…

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

HOPE next year brings you all lots of joy and travels 🙂

Thanks to GlobalMouse @ GlobalMouseTravels for inspiring this post during our twitter conversation.