Tuesday, February 3, 2015

All Good Things Must Come to an End

I feel as if I’m overdue for a blog post, but just can’t really put into words everything that I’m feeling right now.  I’m sitting in my hostel for the night, in the city of Townsville, writing this and will head to Magnetic Island tomorrow for a couple days.  I guess I’ll go back in time a bit and tell you about my last few, precious days in Cairns.  This is probably going to end up being a long post and for that I apologize.  Spent Thursday and Friday afternoon at the lagoon with Caterina, Jordan, Max, Stefan, & Allan – the water is incredibly warm, but it’s better than sweating in the sun.  Plus, if you stay in long enough by the time you get out the heat is almost bearable.  On Friday night Stefan and his girlfriend Kaho (she joined us that afternoon) were going to Dominos for a pizza dinner and asked if we wanted to join, so Max, Allan, and I decided we might as well enjoy some sustenance before heading to volleyball.  Caterina had to go to work and sadly could not join us.  On the way to the courts we ran into Nina, Rob, & Sweeny heading that way as well.  Since we were so late arriving (I’m usually there by 6pm and it was after 7:30pm) we got to skip to the part of the night where all of us regulars just play together.  We had 3 teams and were able to have a nice rotation on the courts, and since we all know each other there was tons of banter and laughter back and forth.

On Saturday I worked in reception all day (despite working both Thursday & Friday morning, for which I was to actually be paid, but never was) – it was slow, as usual.  I checked 2 people into a room that was to have been vacant for at least 3 days and they came back to tell me it wasn’t cleaned.  I texted Tim to tell him it needed cleaned and told the guests that I’d have it cleaned by the time they got back.  By 4:30pm (when my shift ended) I checked the room and it was still dirty.  Without knowing when the guests would return I couldn’t move them to another room, so I just cleaned it myself.  With the room cleaned I grabbed some dinner and headed to volleyball.  It was actually pretty dead all night, not many people at all.  When I arrived Jun, Calvin, Lucas, & Chulisa were playing against some new people I’d never met.  Mark arrived shortly after I did so we jumped in and played a few games.  Lithia, Hoover, & Gus arrived eventually, but that was it and it just wasn’t much fun.  I left a bit before 9pm because Pukari was having a birthday celebration and I still needed to shower and get ready.  We ended up at the Casino because they have live music and upstairs there are some pool tables.  We ended up having a small pool tournament among ourselves and I ended up on the winning team thanks to Allan (I think over the course of the entire tournament I got 2 balls in the pocket).  It was a late night, but Pukari said he enjoyed it, so that’s what counts I guess.

Caterina wanted to do something with everyone before I left so she decided meeting up for drinks at the Pier Bar before volleyball would be easier than trying to host a BBQ.  So, Sunday afternoon when I got off working in reception she and I walked to the Pier Bar together.  We had a nice group of people and it was so nice of everyone to stop by to see me.  There were pool tables so the guys ended up having another tournament; I was luckily allowed to stay out of it this time.  By 7:30pm we were all heading to volleyball and when we got there Stephanie, TyeiSha, and Wilson were back from the Torres Straits!  I hadn’t seen them since I’d been back so it was great to see them before I left.  Nina told me a few times that night how she really doesn’t want me to leave – her and I are usually the only girls, on a regular basis, that play until the lights go out.  With Jedda, Caterina, Stephanie, and Mae being the only other girls that really count as regulars.  Somebody was joking the other day about the guys only going to volleyball every night to pick up girls, yeah right…

I had texted Agatha and Alicia when I returned telling them I only had a week left and really wanted to see them, but I never heard anything back.  I mentioned something about it to Jay and found out they’re back in Korea at the moment.  Over the last couple days I kept running into people while out and about, saw Agnes in Coles and we chatted for a bit since I hadn’t seen her at volleyball in awhile, ran into Park on my way home from volleyball one night and found out he works with Louis at the RSL, and I’ve even passed Rob on the street a few times.  Every time those little meetings happen it makes me feel like I shouldn’t leave, like I belong here somehow.  Jay even gave me his lucky Texas dime that he’s been carrying around with him since 2008, he said it will help me earn money so I can come back to Cairns as soon as possible.  My last night at volleyball was wonderful, with the exception, of course, that it was my last night.  There was a quick rain storm around 4:30pm so it cooled everything off and helped keep the dust down on the courts.  I met up with Caterina, Jordan, & Allan at Rattle & Hum (they had been at the lagoon and were having a drink after the storm) and we all headed to volleyball together.  Rob, Nina, Sweeny, Francis, Moses, Chulisa, Sam, & Banali were already there so we quickly made a team and got playing.  After a several games, more people had arrived in that time span, Allan told me I should get everyone to sit on the steps for a group photo.  I thought it was an excellent idea, and since Jordan was counting the score for the current game I told him that when it was over he should tell everyone to gather so we could get a photo.  It was a big group, and yet I can think of at least 10 more people off the top of my head that weren’t in it or had already left for the night.  Pukari had bought a teddy bear and had been not-so-discreetly having everyone sign it for me over the last few days so they gave that to me as well.  We quickly got back to playing and I think they only let me sit out one game.  Every time I’d get off someone would step out and tell me to jump in since it was my last night.  I almost felt bad because we were all there to play.  The last game Nina and Jason kept saying, “Come on, we’ve gotta win this one for Abbie!”  They eventually turned out the lights and I had to start saying the majority of my goodbyes.  Most of us stood around talking for a bit, but thankfully we didn’t prolong the inevitable too much.  Caterina and I were the last to leave and I’m really, really going to miss her.  She’s such a sweetie….

1 comment:

  1. We so much enjoy reading your post and understand how hard it is to say goodby to good friends. We will be praying for you on your trip back to PA.
    Rick and Jake