>  E21 – Let’s Go to Australia and New Zealand
The Roaming Yeti
The Roaming Yeti
E21 - Let's Go to Australia and New Zealand

In today’s episode, I speak with Kathleen Pellet about a trip to Australia and New Zealand that wasn’t exactly planned and how it brought her and her dad closer. Kathleen is a business writer and consultant who loves immersive foreign travel experiences.  When she’s not working or traveling, you will find her in her gardens or cooking up something new in the kitchen.  She is proud of her large blended family of six grown kids, who all bring her many adventures, travel and otherwise! You ready? Let’s Roam.



Welcome to the Roaming Yeti podcast where we share stories and tips to inspire you to roam your neighborhood and the world. I’m your host and head Yeti Beth Schillaci. In today’s episode, I speak with Kathleen Pellet about a trip to Australia and New Zealand. That wasn’t exactly planned, and how it brought her and her father closer. Kathleen is a business writer and consultant who loves immersive foreign travel experiences. When she’s not working or traveling, you’ll find her in her gardens or cooking up something new in the kitchen. She is proud of her large blended family of six grown kids who all bring her many adventures travel and otherwise, you ready? Let’s Roam. Welcome back everyone to the roaming Yeti Podcast. Today. I it this is a this is a fun story, I think for everyone. Today, I’m interviewing Kathy and I were talking about a cruise she took to Australia and Australia and New Zealand. But it it’s not your typical trip planning. So Kathy, first of all, thank you so much for joining me to share this story with us. Thank you for having me. It’s fun to talk about this unexpected adventure of having exactly so

Beth  1:21  

sort of go into how this came about like this was not the trip you had planned on having it’s not a bucket list trip or anything for you. How did this trip come about?

Kathleen  1:34  

So I went on a cruise to Auckland, to New Zealand and to Australia with my father and my sister and some extended family never intended to go on a cruise ever. Because I am I am a really violently introverted and just never stand the thought of being trapped on a cruise ship or in a cabin. And I didn’t really expect to go to Australia because the thought of being on a plane for over 20 hours was never appealing to me. But I find the older I get, the more uncomfortable it is to sit on long flights. So it just seemed like that was something that was kind of out of reach. But so how this ended up happening is my dad was retiring and selling his business finally at the age of 79. And he’d never been outside of the US never wanted to travel outside of the US. And all of a sudden as he was facing down retirement, decided that, you know, he might want to go to Australia someday brought it up to me. And I happen to mention it to my sister, and she said, Oh, you know, my, my husband and I are going to Australia for our 30th anniversary with some family and on a cruise. And he’s welcome to come. So I thought, Oh, what a great, you know, retirement gift for my dad. So I offered to pay for my dad to tag along. And his brother in law was going to kind of be his traveling companion in his cabin, but had to drop out suddenly due to a health crisis. So in the midst of all this, I learned that I had paid for a two for the price of one package for my dad, I didn’t realize I had done because I’ve never paid for cruise, I didn’t know how much they were and

as he’s, you know, having trouble finding a roommate, my husband suggested that I should go, you know, I’ve already paid for it. And my dad and I kind of grown apart a little bit during these past five or six years. During the recent I guess the recent troubles we’ve been experiencing here in the US. You know, like so many other families finding themselves on on differing sides. And so my husband suggested I tag along on the trip as a way to maybe help my dad and I kind of find our way back to the closeness we’ve always had so so this was truly an unexpected adventure because I had about eight weeks notice. And I found out just as we had returned from two weeks in Hungary so for me I’d already done the traveling I wanted to do for the next couple of years. And and this is going to sound ridiculous, but I was really dreading it because I was really nervous about just the cruise and you know, being an introvert and needing that downtime and that alone time to recharge and after especially after Christmas, which is really a kind of a stressful time for me is the mom and the planner. The idea of kind of going coming out of Christmas being already worn down and getting in a small cabin on a cruise ship was a little nerve wracking.

Beth  4:43  

To as a fellow introvert, I can totally see So, um, like how many Where did the cruise start? Where did it stop? Like how many stops in between? Did you you know,

Kathleen  4:59  

so We flew the cruise started in Auckland. So we flew from BWI, and we had like three different stops, which ended up being great. Because they were kind of the flights were broken up so much that we had, you know, we’re able to get out, stretch our legs, go to the next gate, it just gave gave me a chance to, you know, kind of get my blood flowing again. And it really broke up the trip. And it did not it was not as bad as I thought it was going to be like I wouldn’t. So that was that’s good to know. But we started in Auckland, in New Zealand, and we got to spend two days there before the boat left. Before we were going to board on the ship. So we got to explore Auckland a little bit, which was nice. And then from there we did. I’m gonna say about eight or nine different cops. Yeah, so we were on the ship about 12 days. So we had a long sail and and so we went down the east side coasts of North Island of New Zealand, South Island of New Zealand. And then we went from there to Tasmania, and did a stop there and then kind of on the southern coast of Australia, like in New South Wales and Victoria. So we we finished in Sydney, and just embarked there.

Beth  6:21  

That’s, that’s a lot of moving around. I guess it’s I guess that’s the I’ve never been on a cruise either. We’re not really cruising people. So I guess that’s the good part is when you’re hitting so many stops, at least you have sort of a home base.

Kathleen  6:37  

Yeah, it was it was more it was it was a little more exhausting. I signed us up for excursions at every port, because I have never like when I when I go overseas, and especially if I want to go that far away. I’m that person that over books, the sightseeing tours, because I want to see every inch, I want to cover every single thing I possibly can because I don’t expect to ever go back. Right. So I definitely signed us up for a excursion every port. And it was it was exhausting, because you get up, you know, at six in the morning, and they want you out the door by eight because they’re going to leave sometimes we left port again at three, so they don’t really leave you as much time as you would think. But there were a few days at sea between New Zealand and Tasmania, where we were on open ocean. And so that was nice, because we were able to relax and just enjoy the ship.

Beth  7:24  

That’s nice. What were what were some of the activities you did like what were some of your favorites. Um,

Kathleen  7:30  

I would say the my favorite. The highlight of the whole trip for me was something called Fjordland National Park, which is down in the southeast corner of the South Island of New Zealand. And it’s a really remote World Heritage Site. With these few words, and you really I really couldn’t have seen it any other way than on a boat. Because it’s I think only one of the sounds is even accessible with car. So really, it’s only the most intrepid hikers that can get down in there. But they actually arranged it was a day we were on ship all day. But we were just gliding in and out of these fjords and they would get us into a sound and then kind of shut the engines down and just let us hear like the waterfalls that were coming down and hear the birds and look at the mountains. And it was just a really beautiful surreal travel experience to go in and out of those spaces. And the mountains there are beautiful they’re like Swiss Alps. So they have snow on the peaks even though it was mid summer and oh wow. Really beautiful.

Beth  8:27  

Yeah, I mean, I’ve, I’ve so that’s one of the places that I’m always like, I would love to go but I don’t really know a lot about so hearing this information. So, so cool and interesting.

Kathleen  8:41  

I also really loved Auckland, it’s an really neat city, it has kind of, you know, most cities you go in like you think about Paris and that the architecture is very consistent and similar. In Auckland, they were just a jumble of different kinds of skyscrapers and architecture. And somehow it all just works, you know. And then it’s it’s kind of wrapped around these beautiful bays, and it’s really walkable. And it was summer and the whole city like I’ve never been in an urban space where all you smell is flowers, like the smell of jasmine and Magnolia and like honey suckle into Musa so you’re in a city where normally like if you think about when you’re in New York and you’re getting whiffs of exhaustion sewer in Auckland every time I breathed in it was just flowers, like really, really intense, or so that was really neat. I’d say my other big highlight was Tasmania. And I went in knowing nothing about it. And it’s this beautiful island that’s kind of south of the east side of of Australia. And it was I mean it looks like if you think about Ireland with palm trees and wallabies, just beautiful beaches and lots of farms like miles of poppy fields and, and I would endure that flight to go to Tasmania again. I would totally back Yeah, it was it was amazing and it’s theirs. Only 600,000 people that live there. And every gorgeous beach, we stopped and looked at there was no one, you know, I mean, it’s just it’s just very still and quiet, beautiful place.

Beth  10:10  

Wow, that’s, and I always forget that that’s a So is that an island that sort of envy. I’m trying to sort of get my geography, Street View looking

Kathleen  10:20  

at Australia, it’s kind of just under the east, the East Coast side, below it. So it’s to the west of New Zealand, but just below Australia.

Beth  10:32  

Gotcha. Now, did you did you climb the bridge or anything in Sydney? Did you do that?

Kathleen  10:37  

Alright, this is so heartbreaking. We sailed into Sydney on the last day, I think I woke up because the lights of the city were coming in my window and I stood at the window and watched a sale in, we had to get on a bus and go right to the airport. So I didn’t get to go to Bondi Beach or see the bridge or go to the opera house that that that one was a heartbreaker. And I had, you know, we had like a four hour layover at the airport. And I looked into hiring a driver to maybe take us, you know, not through the cruise line to see a couple of things. But my poor dad was so tired. He just looked at me with this lip that says, please just get to the airport. So I think he was just tuckered out. So I was in Sydney and just long enough to get off the ship and go to the airport. So that was hard. Oh, that’s waving at Nemo from the plane.

Beth  11:29  

Next time you see, I don’t know, I feel like maybe there is a return trip in this for you.

Kathleen  11:35  

I have so I mean, it would be great to go back and kind of see it on land.

Beth  11:41  

Exactly. So were there any things that like, sort of disappointed you about the trip? Or was it fairly, fairly good.

Kathleen  11:51  

It was fairly good. I think one big disappointment. I had one excursion, I was so excited about and it was the first excursion we were supposed to do in touring in New Zealand. And it is the system where my nerd side is going to come out. But the Lord of the Rings movies, they built the set of the Shire, there. Yeah. And I really wanted to see it like I, I, I was beyond excited to see this. So it was by far the most expensive excursion they had. And I was like, I don’t care how much money I am going to go stand in front of The Hobbit outs and everything and just be there. And we as soon as we sailed out of Auckland hit a tropical depression that followed us the whole way down. And it was so bad that and that was my first night on ship I woke up and the ship was just tossing and I thought well, this doesn’t seem normal. But um, I woke up and there were a seasick bags tied to every railing on the ship and nobody was out and they could not make port so we’ll be able to get into and I didn’t even occur to me that that could possibly happen that I just wouldn’t even get to go. So we had to skip that port. And the weather was pretty iffy for like the first three, three stops I think we made but yeah, so I missed I didn’t get to go see Lord of the Rings. So yes, you’re right. I do need to go back.

Beth  13:10  

Yeah. So about that. That one was that one hurt that one hurts me and I wasn’t on the trip. So because I’ve seen pictures of of that and it looks so cool. built that there. Ah, see, fellow nerds unite. It’s all good. I did like, again, you know, I thought feeling he probably learned a lot because this was sort of a quick turnaround trip. But like, what, what did you really learn about yourself on going through a lot of a lot of these new things on a very quick turnaround.

Kathleen  13:45  

I’m always learning about the ingenuity of my introvert ability to find spaces to be alone and recharge. So I was I was able to find a video, the ship that we went went out on was the Norwegian spirit. And again, I know nothing about ships. So this is my only context. But it is a smaller one. I think it had maybe eight or nine decks. It wasn’t very big and I maybe 1000 passengers. And there it had just been completely retrofitted. And so had hasn’t even been sailing for a year since the retrofit. So it was able to find a video that a traveling blogger, I guess was hired as an influencer to kind of give a tour of the ship on its first maiden voyage. And she did a great job finding little spaces. And so I watched that video and was able to find things that weren’t even on like the little map of the ship that they gave us that I could kind of hide in and just, you know, quietly be alone and read or you know, catch up on on emails and stuff like that. So that was great. I learned that I really love traveling on boats, which I you know, didn’t expect. I really liked I didn’t get seasick when we were You know, in the middle of all the storms, and the rocking of the boat at night was just so relaxing. So I really, I slept like a baby on that ship literally. And I liked the routine of kind of coming back from excursions at the end of the day. And I just sit on the back deck and have a cocktail, and just the boat would pull away from port and we traveled down the coast, and, you know, the coastlines we were traveling down, were so beautiful. So it was just really nice, it was a really different way of seeing a country, you know, from the coastline and pulling into the ports each day and kind of exploring from the home base of the ship. So I really appreciated that. I think the other thing I learned, and I wasn’t expecting to learn, so I was probably the youngest person, early on by 25 years on that ship, there were a lot of retirees and older people on the ship. And what I learned is that a loss of mobility doesn’t really have to mean the end of your travel life. Because there were a lot of people there that had walkers and were in wheelchairs, and the tour buses were able to accommodate them. And there were always the cruise ship would kind of list excursions by what the mobility level needed to be. So when you were chasing, you could find things. And so, um, I realized that, you know, even someday, if I’m using a walker, I’m, you know, not able to walk as much or as long, I’m, um, it’s not gonna be the end of my days of travel. So that’s good to know, because he’s, these people were really interested. And it was cute, because we’d be going on the tour bus between different parts of the excursion, and they’d take a quick nap. But they were out and, you know, out there seeing everything. So that was good to know. Um, and I guess I learned, you know, that with constant proximity and getting out of your routine and out of your comfort zone that to people who have found themselves kind of two different sides of a political or cultural divide can rekindle the relationship, get past it and get back to where they were, which is sort of the happy ending of our trip was the whole bowl for me. So that was great to just be able to spend the time with my dad and kind of start to relate to each other as father and daughter again, and being able to see him experience a foreign country and experience travel, and just watch his reactions. It was it was just amazing. Are that?

Beth  17:15  

Well, no, I mean, I think that’s a lot when you get out of your, your routines. When you’re seeing a new culture and you start realizing that you’re, you we have so much more in common with people in other countries than we have differences. And I think when people see that they sort of mellow some some thoughts. I mean, I know I always do when I go and I’m like, oh, but people told us this. It’s like, Never listen, just go meet the people. And I think

Kathleen  17:44  

that helped. I think it helped getting him away from the television. Getting him he loved meeting people on the ship. And because the ship left from Auckland, I mean, there was all kinds of different people from different countries and, and he loved introducing himself to everybody and meeting them and everybody was calling him by his first name, everyone, we went to two or three days. So I think I think it did, it did

Beth  18:08  

make a big impact on him. So he’s the extrovert of the failure. He’s

Kathleen  18:13  

opposite in terms of that he’s is violently extroverted as I am introverted. So totally, totally polar opposites in that sense.

Beth  18:23  

When you said you were you traveled down along the coast, were you always close enough that you could see the coastline?

Kathleen  18:30  

Um, no, not always. I think especially during the first three stops the waters were so rough, they had us kind of far away from the coast, I think getting to the outer edge of the storm. So no, I think once we got to Sydney like to to Tasmania and Australia, we were closer to the coastline just because of where we were traveling between Tasmania and and Australia itself. So I could see a lot of the times we could see the coast but going down the coast of New Zealand No. So between stops, we would kind of get out on open water.

Beth  19:07  

Very cool. Down, they

Kathleen  19:09  

could pick up speed that way, I think.

Beth  19:11  

And what did you learn sort about the culture and the people of the area that you weren’t? I don’t want to say you weren’t expecting but what did you What did you find with the people you met?

Kathleen  19:24  

That is my favorite part of travel. And I’m gonna say for the cruise aspect, that is the downside. I didn’t really get to experience the culture of New Zealand, Australia. Um, you know, I spent most of the time either on a tour bus, the most culture I got was the tour bus drivers and they were great. I mean, they were putting in would talk about different things, but we really didn’t get I didn’t really get that immersion that I like to get. So that was a downside. I did learn about cruise ship culture, which is a whole thing. And I can tell you, no introvert is ever going to get away with getting on the ship l debater and averting her eyes, you’re gonna be forced to make introductions and share your life story. And, you know, this is a little floating city and from the minute the ship took off, it just seemed like everybody wanted to make friends and know who everybody else was. And, and so um, I did learn about that. That was fun.

Beth  20:20  

Hello, that’s like we’re we all need to know each other now.

Kathleen  20:23  

Exactly. This is going down, we need to know who we’re saving and who we’re not.

Beth  20:31  

Oh, I love it. Um, what what do you wish you would have known before you went on this this trip.

Kathleen  20:39  

I wish I hadn’t spent so much time worrying about it, you know, the anxiety part I wish I had just known. I just relaxed and let it happen and not worried so much about whether it was going to enjoy the ship, I spent a lot of time and energy being nervous and dreading it and then it kind of cast a shadow over my Christmas holiday season. Oh, just everything I wish I had not been such a worrywart about it. I other than that, I kind of like going in cold when I travel and not knowing too much. So I don’t think I would have wanted to know much about where I was going because I really like just sort of having a place you know, come into focus as I get there and be surprised by some of the things that I see and just that you know, curiosity about what things are like and it you know, the opportunities to go to different state parks and see different plants and trees and hear the birds and you know, try different foods and I love that kind of thing. So just not knowing sometimes it makes the whole experience a little bit more intense, I guess. Yeah.

Beth  21:42  

Yeah. See, you’re I’m the I have I watched all the YouTube videos

Kathleen  21:49  

I do that I get over plan. Well, I want just enough information to pack and then and then go from there. So

Beth  21:57  

fair enough. Well

Kathleen  21:59  

know how expensive the true the true expensive the cruiser had been good to net like everything seemed like it was extra excursions. The you know, anything you wanted to do on board, whether it’s bingo or what have you. Even bottled water, like our group had a drinks package for cocktails and wine and beer and that did not include bottled water, like like internet was extra. So ended up being like more expensive, a lot more than I thought it would be so I guess if anyone out there is listening and hasn’t done a cruise before and wants to just know that there’s a lot of extra costs as you’re creating your budget.

Beth  22:38  

Yeah, that’s that’s good. I can’t believe includes alcohol, but not Yeah. They get to one way or another, I guess. Um, so you did mention about packing and stuff like What? What? What did you pack? What did you were like, what should we know?

Kathleen  22:59  

So I did do a little research there. Because I my impression of cruises is that you had to dress formally at dinner every night and I I first of all don’t have much formal wear that fits me right now just because of thanks COVID. And then um, you know, just the idea of having to pack you know, for sightseeing clothes and formal dress clothes. So I did some research and found out that the ship I was on the Norwegian spirit is a casual cruise ship that they haven’t labeled with that so you don’t need to dress for dinner. So that helped a lot. So mostly I packed clothes for sightseeing, and for evening just a few pairs of like kind of flowy pants and tops that are wrinkle free. Just anything I can cram into a suitcase in a small you know a space as possible and just kind of pull it out and wear it and mix and match. So I kind of pack around my excursions or whatever sightseeing I’m doing. So I I don’t over pack too much which I always overpack. But at least I try to mitigate it.

Beth  23:57  

Yeah, I guess on a lot of those excursions you probably needed a fairly fairly decent pair of shoes to

Kathleen  24:03  

Yeah. Hiking boots with me.

Beth  24:06  

Nice. Did you eat anything like different or new or that’s, um, a lot of

Kathleen  24:12  

the places they took us again, these are their older people with the excursions they would take us to tea shops a lot and so it’s typical British, you know, kind of tea shop food. I think my favorite thing I absolutely loved was they had Cheddar Cheese Scones, which were just huge. I love those. I still think about those. I did try some of the meat pies in New Zealand because that’s a thing. And other than that, it was mostly just the food on a cruise ship because you come back every night and you’re eating on the cruise ship and you’re kind of eating breakfast on the cruise ship so I didn’t really get to have the foodie experience on the cruise but the food on the cruise was pretty good. So

Beth  24:53  

so they didn’t like nationalize the like the food wasn’t sort of matching the on the cruise ship.

Kathleen  24:59  

It was it was A lot of different themes all the time. Different different foods, I noticed what they did is like they have specialty restaurants and you’d see like, different things being offered in the specialty restaurant, then a day later, it would be on the big buffet. You know, as remixed and remade, but they are one of the chef’s must have been from India because the Indian food on the buffet was insane. It was just delicious. Good to eat.

Beth  25:27  

That’s, that sounds amazing. Yeah, I want Indian

Kathleen  25:30  

food on my trip to Australia.

Beth  25:33  

We that’s sort of a game our family plays. His when we were in Rome, we went to was an Irish Pub. But I actually had stir fry, which was some of the best stuff I’ve ever had. But it was an Irish Pub in Rome. In Beijing, we ended up in a pizza place, like a brick oven. And it was delicious pizza. So that’s sort of our thing, we sort of pick up very non non customary food, eat at least one one point in time. So I think eating Indian food on Australia is perfect

Kathleen  26:09  

to start trying that.

Beth  26:12  

It just, it just sort of happens. I think we’re just like, I’m tired of whatever whatever food are actually in Beijing and ended up we couldn’t read any of the signs. And we saw pizza were like, We know that. And then they and then they sat us in the front window. So all the other Americans who are walking by that I’m coming into

Kathleen  26:37  

anyway, the beach, bring everybody in.

Beth  26:40  

Like, oh, they look look Italian put them in the front. But yeah, so I mean, I highly endorse eating. And I think that’s the cool thing about anywhere now is, every city and every place is so international, that you’re gonna get different flavors. And and you know, not always what you think traditionally, is that that food?

Kathleen  27:04  

Yeah, that was that was probably the another hard thing about not being on land as much as not having those experiences of, you know, kind of trying something that you couldn’t really get completely anywhere else. And like you said, seeing how they interpret other kinds of food and but there were, you know, compensations.

Beth  27:23  

So sounds like, that’s sort of the, the gray part was, it was sort of, you got to see a lot of different places. The hard part was, like you said, you didn’t get to immerse yourself in, in anything, like you typically would?

Kathleen  27:37  

I think so. Yeah. But it was, it’s a great way, I think, for older people to travel. And when I noticed is it, you know, the excursions gave people just enough of a taste, and then when the energy starts to wane, they’re back on the ship. And they’re familiar place and, you know, eating dinner where they want to eat, or, for me, I would kind of like to sit, like I said, Sit on the back deck and just get a cocktail and watch us pull out a port that was like my little routine. So it’s a good I think option for somebody who doesn’t have the stamina to maybe be on the ground 12 hours, or 18 hours a day sightseeing wants to still be able to travel and get a little taste of different places. And then the cruise lines, I think, typically offer you a couple of days on either end, if you want to spend some time. In this case, I think, given what I’d already spent, we just couldn’t afford to stay in Sydney. And my dad, he was really tired. By the end of it, it was a big deal. And we’ve been gone for two weeks out of the country for the first time in his life. He actually hung in pretty well and really loved it. So

Beth  28:38  

yeah, I mean, that’s for the first for the first time to fly 20 hours and do that, like, that’s impressive.

Kathleen  28:47  

To him, you know, and 79 It’s pretty amazing.

Beth  28:51  

Exactly. Excuse me, um, you know, on your have compared to other trips you’ve taken like, sort of on your scale of one to 10 Where would you Where would you rank this one?

Kathleen  29:06  

I think I’d give it a 10 I mean, I end up loving every place I go, I think I never expected to ever be in Australia and my life. So just on that fact that I got to be there and see New Zealand, which I didn’t know much about was amazing. The opportunity to just be in that part of the world the opportunity to travel with my father, you know, we didn’t we didn’t, we didn’t grow up. I didn’t have a lot of money when we grew up and so we didn’t really vacation like that. So it was a wonderful chance to do something with him that we had never done before. That was awesome. The being able to see the coastline and there’s a lot of wildlife on the New Zealand coastline that we got to see some of the excursions we took boats out and we saw penguins and sea lions and seals and Albatross and it’s just a really beautiful kind of wild boar. To the world. And I feel really lucky, I got to see it. And I would say it’s absolutely well worth the flight to go. And that’s without even having gotten to spend a whole lot of time on land. I I’m definitely intrigued to go back. So

Beth  30:15  

you were saying you’ve had that flight sort of broken up? And that was actually better than

Kathleen  30:21  

that. Yeah. When we initially because the the cruise line booked to the flights and the flights were part of the package. And when I first saw that we were doing to, you know, we were on three different flights in two different layovers. I thought, oh, that’s crazy. But in practice, it was great just to be able to get up, stretch your legs, move around, get a snack at the airport, and then get back on the plane and go to the next leg. It just seemed to me like it went really quickly. I feel like it was a terrible experience. The Traveling part.

Beth  30:54  

Yeah, cuz that that’s, that’s definitely I’ve done 15 hours, but 20 I don’t know that extra five seems.

Kathleen  31:01  

Yeah, I think our longest leg was 1110 or 11. So it wasn’t it wasn’t terrible. Just because again, we think we went from BWI to Denver to San Francisco and to Auckland. So it was cool.

Beth  31:14  

Yeah, that makes sense. Well, this information is, is there anything else that I didn’t ask that I should have? Or like, there’s other other information I’m missing?

Kathleen  31:23  

I guess, you know, some of the things I was curious about before I cruised was Where does all my stuff fit in the cabin? Like the cabin sharing it with my dad was nervous about that, too. It wasn’t it as small as I expected it to be. You know, we didn’t have a large one. I mean, it was probably the smallest double cabin they offer. But they’re engineered so brilliantly. I mean, there’s space for everything. The closet was big enough, there were plenty of cubbies for stuff, the bathroom wasn’t too bad, there’s tons of room under the beds for the luggage just to get it out of the way. You know, there was even room for a little table and chairs and a you know, kind of a dressing table with a mirror. So it was it was a lot more comfortable than I expected. The beds were really comfortable. You’re not in the room really, other than this, and shower in the morning. So um, but it was not an uncomfortable place to be. Excellent.

Beth  32:18  

That’s, I’m so glad it was such a good experience. It could have been a very different story.

Kathleen  32:27  

But it ended up being a really great experience. So I’m really glad I did it. And this particular little ship that I call it little it’s really not little but there were a couple of times we were important next to like a Carnival Cruise Line. And I felt like we were dwarfed. But um, it also goes to Alaska and does the Alaskan cruise. So I would definitely take the ship and do the Alaskan cruise. Because after having seen the coastline of you know, New Zealand and Australia, I think that would be a beautiful way to kind of get into Alaska also. So

Beth  32:58  

yeah, my bucket list now it seems like a manageable size to for dealing with people.

Kathleen  33:08  

It was manageable, never seemed crowded in any given place. It was nicely designed I had a What’s unusual, I guess they have their sevens. Story deck was a beautiful big wooden deck, kind of like the one you’d think of for Titanic where they’re out in the chairs, but it went all the way around the ship unbroken. So on days when I just needed to stretch my legs or walk, I could do that I could go all the way around the whole way. And they had marked like, what am I on was you know how many times you needed to go around and the ship had a huge gym in it. It was beautiful. But I just I liked being outside and being in the car and stuff. So that that was a really nice aspect of it too. It was it was not uncomfortable. It was not a bad experience. And even an introvert can do it.

Beth  33:54  

Hurt to hear that’s the endorsement. Well, this information was so great. I really appreciate it. I do have a few pop quiz questions that I asked everyone that I don’t put on the sheet that I sent. But they’re they’re painless, I swear. What what’s your favorite road trip snack?

Kathleen  34:20  

Um, so in a car or flying or doesn’t matter, either one are different. In the car, I’d say it’s like fruit and things that crunchy things like pretzels and chocolate chip cookies. If I’m flying, I have a little bit of a fear of flying. So I tend to pick up bougie snacks because I’m like if I’m going down I want the last really good so like really like I’ll go get a box of chocolates from the perfect truffle. That’s what I’m gonna send snack on.

Beth  34:47  

Okay, I think I’m adopting that. That’s I love that. I’m going down. I’m gonna

Kathleen  34:58  

I’m gonna have something good. I’m gonna Have the taste of chocolate in my mouth. It’s the last thing I’m going to experience. shuffle off this mortal coil

Beth  35:09  

What do you do you have feel like you’ve done a bucket trip, Bucket List trip. But do you have a sort of that dream trip that you would love to get on?

Kathleen  35:19  

I know it’s my bucket list trip was always to go to Africa. Like I love the movie out of Africa. And I love the book, you know that you suck. Dennison wrote, I’d love to go to Kenya and see where she lived. And the the plateau where Denis Finch Hatton was buried and just see all of that. As, as I get older, I guess my I just the stamina that it takes to go to Africa. I just don’t know if I have it. But I guess it’s, you know, I’ll leave it on the bucket list for now and see what happens. I never thought I was gonna go to Australia. So I guess I should never say never about Africa.

Beth  35:54  

It’s true. That’s very true. Do you have besides the ostrich, do you have a favorite trip that you’ve you’ve taken? And what is it was it?

Kathleen  36:06  

That’s, that’s hard, because it’s like picking a favorite book, you know,

Beth  36:12  

you can give, you can give different ones for different reasons.

Kathleen  36:16  

If I think about the ones that really stand out, I guess it’s the ones that are really deeply culturally immersive. So I’ve had the opportunity a couple of times to travel to a foreign country with people who grew up there, and to be able to meet their family to really kind of get the insider’s tour and eat at you know, local restaurants and things like that. Those are the trips that I really love, because you’re really experiencing the food and, and places that are off the beaten path of of tourists. So I was able to go to Turkey, my best friend grew up in Istanbul. So that was wonderful, because we stayed with her family. And you know, we just spent 12 days and she showed me every place she’d gone growing up and introduced me to every food and our sisters are amazing cooks. So, you know, I really ate my way through Istanbul. And it’s a beautiful city, I probably one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever been to. And I even more than Rome and Paris, it’s just absolutely a stunning place. And the food was kind of a mix of Persian and in Greek. So it was incredible. So that that was great and, and then traveled to Hungary with a family member, um, my husband and I are both of Hungarian descent. So we got to go to Hungary with his family and experience that and again, just very similar to be able to go to places where they’re off the beaten path and, and experience food. And like, culturally in Hungary, they have a lot of hot springs, so they do these hot baths that have been around since Roman times, and just to do things that I’ve never done, you know, that was, that was an experience I’d never had. So I think that that I really enjoy because you just get to feel for a couple of weeks, like you actually live there, you know, and really understand the people a little bit more deeply.

Beth  38:11  

Yeah, the sound both sound amazing. Travel playlist. So this can be road trip travel, flying travel, what are you listening to, but it doesn’t have to be music.

Kathleen  38:28  

I do listen to books a lot, like, like, I love my Audible account. So I love listening to books and podcasts. And I guess when we’re in the car, it’s um, it can be it really depends on what mood we’re in, but it can be showtunes or singing, or it can be a lot of times revert back to sort of the music you listen to in your 20s When you’re in college, or you know, for somewhere that’s really beautiful, like you’re driving through the mountains of West Virginia or something can be like, you know, classical music to something that fits the landscape or it just really depends on what mood we’re in.

Beth  39:04  

Totally, totally makes sense. Or it’s usually depends on who’s in the vehicle or who’s driving, driving. They get the pick usually. But this was such great information. I’m so glad that worked out really really well. And like I said, it’s it was a good story to share not a cautionary tale so that’s

Kathleen  39:29  

not at all it could have been it was not so thank you for having me on. This was a lot of fun. It was it was a lot of fun to share. Great maybe I’ve convinced somebody out there to try cruising which is something I had sworn I would never do but ended up loving. So

Beth  39:42  

I think I think that’s rule number one is we should probably not when it comes to the traveling not swear we’re not going to do something. We’re probably gonna happen. All right, well, thank you for your time. Thanks. Bye. Take care. Thanks again to Kathleen for being open and honest and sharing her experience and thank you for listening. I hope these episodes inspire you to get out and roam even in your own neighborhood. Please subscribe so you don’t miss future episodes. And if you like what we’re doing here, please leave a review and a rating. Also to help support us please head to Yeti to to pick up some roaming Yeti merch, talk to you soon and keep roaming.