Sunday, July 5, after 9 valuable months, I left Townsville behind. It is always sad to say goodbye to many good friends, but at the same time it's also exciting to start a new adventure! My first stop was in Brisbane, where I arrived at the YWAM Base in Mitchelton in the middle of the night (around 1.30 am). Here I spent 4 lovely days, exploring the city and I caught up with Hannah (friend from DTS) and Kaisha!
After that, I moved on to the Gold Coast (Surfers Paradise), where I would initially stay at a YWAM Base, but this was canceled last minute (due to COVID-19), so I booked a hostel to spent the week there. After living in the Christian community for so long, it was a bit weird to enter a world where it's all about partying, drinking, drugs and alcohol. But on the other hand, this also offered many opportunities to talk to other backpackers about deeper things in life and to testify to God's goodness!
The first two days felt a bit lonely, but luckily that changed on Saturday! Sara became my new roommate. Although we both have a completely different worldview, we got along very well. She is from Australia and managed to take me everywhere with her car; national park, waterfalls, mountains, wild kangaroos, city, beach, surfing, etc. It was a lot of fun and super refreshing to spend a week together!
Friday I flew to Newcastle, the base where I will work as a volunteer (mission builder) in the coming months! I was received very hospitable, the people are very open and friendly and it really feels like the right place to be. I even have my own room, which I consider a great privilege after 9 months in a 22-bed dorm! I will mainly work in the kitchen and contribute where needed.
The Birth Attendant School has been postponed until the Australian borders reopen for international students to come. What it looks like now is that'll be July 2021 at the earliest. Therefore I'll probably go back to the Netherlands at the end of November, until the school starts. We shall see!