- Mark Twain
We left the UK, our country of birth in 1993 bound for Mauritius, the most beautiful Indian Ocean island. We spent 4 amazing years there, managing to fit in travel adventures to the Indian Ocean islands of Reunion, Seychelles, Rodrigues and Madagascar, plus trips to Australia, South Africa and several other countries in South East Asia... with just the mild interference of having to work! Although we had both travelled well before coming to Mauritius, David in particular with his buying trips to the Far East, it was whilst we were living, working and playing in Mauritius we both discovered our great love of exploring, meeting people and experiencing other cultures.
In 1997 we found ourselves posted to Bali, Indonesia... oh dear.... just another amazing tropical island, what had we done to deserve this? Four years living here immersed in the culture of a most beautiful people, we managed unreal experiences and adventures travelling though Java and working with a wonderful dedicated workforce. Our true and genuine love for Bali and its people will stay with us forever, and we proudly maintain our link with the Balinese people through our work supporting Ninining Kindergarden in Denpasar, Bali, assisting in education programs for poor and disadvantaged children aged 4 to 9 years of age.
Our "second home", with our beautiful kids at Ninining Home Education in Denpasar Bali.
"The Blonde" in full story telling mode with our kindi kids.
In 2002 we left Bali for Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We spent three memorable years there in the land of diverse cultures and probably the most amazing selection of food on the planet... really not so good for maintaining that waistline!
Finally we decided to settle in Western Australia in the Margaret River wine region some 250 kms south of Perth in 2005, this after David took the opportunity of taking early retirement. Amanda gained our permanent residence by buying, managing and developing a retail business, "Kitchenworks", in Busselton...and in 2010 we both took nationality in what is truly "God's given country".
Over the past 8 years since we have been in Australia together, we have had the great good fortune to explore many of the "outback" areas, to include driving the Gibb River Road (3 times), the notorious Anne Beadell Highway, the Old Telegraph Track to Cape York, witnessed the amazing desert solitude of the Canning Stock Route, and lead the first organised overland tagalong group into East Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory in 2012. During these trips we have been lucky enough to travel with and meet great people, witness amazing wildlife, view stunning sunsets and sunrises, great desert night-time star-filled skies and come to understand better the wonderful country we now call home.
Outback overlanding in north west of Western Australia
In 2010 we undertook a really special "outback safarI" in Namibia, along with our great friends, Shaine and Graham and Helen and Booma. For almost 4 weeks we travelled throughout Namibia in our specially fitted out vehicles with roof top tents, meeting fantastic people from tribes such as the Himba and witnessing awesome sights on the Skeleton Coast, Swakopmund, on the Runene River at the Angolan border, and into Etosha National Park.
In between all this we have managed to indulge ourselves in our other passion for hiking in remote and beautiful areas. In particular New Zealand where we have walked the Greenstone, Routeburn, Abel Tasman, Queen Charlotte and Milford Tracks in the south island and Tasmania where we endured a heat wave on Cradle Mountain when hiking the Overland Track in 2011.
Great reflections on Wharariki Beach, North Island, New Zealand.
Then a great series of walks on the Camino in northern Spain and in the Douro Valley in Portugal in 2013, as well as great walks in our mother country, particularly in The Lake District, The Yorkshire Dales and the amazing beaches and coastal areas surrounding Norfolk and Suffolk. In the Summer of 2014 we discovered/explored the coast of Dorset and Devon and the amazing cliff top walks....one week was nowhere near enough and we will return.
However, all of this has just given us a taste for more overland travel and adventure, and now that we are both "retired", it is time to move to an even bigger stage. So here we start our next adventure to....Explore, Dream & Discover... and to drive around the world.