This past weekend I went with my buddies Allene, Rhi and Ella to Ella’s home in Avalon – which is part of the northern beaches in Sydney. It is beautiful!! When she told me she is from Sydney I imagined she lived in the city. I didn’t realize that there are places associated as Sydney that are not at all like the big city I’d seen. Her home is so cute and her parents are the absolute sweetest and most welcoming people. They were so excited to meet us and hear about how we were enjoying Australia and what our homes were like back in the states compared to here.
The first morning we woke up and had such a lovely breakfast with her parents. Then, we went to Avalon beach and swam and walked around for a bit. Afterwards, we went on a famous hike in Avalon that gives you a stunning view of the beaches and surrounding area. Ella showed us the cafes along the way that she worked at in high school. It was so fun getting to see where Ella was born and raised and where her favorite spots are.
The next day, her parents wanted to take us out on their neighbors boat (if their neighbors aren’t using their boat they always let the Russell’s take it out – how kind!). They wanted to show us more of the northern beaches area and oh wow was it beautiful! Matt, Ella’s dad, drove around and showed us some of the most beautiful spots and he got very excited to show us America Bay – cause we’re from America haha (funny guy). After cruising around for a while, we stopped at a little cove area where we hiked and swam for a couple hours. The water was super chilly but after being in it for a while it felt so nice. We were so thankful that the weather was so beautiful, especially since we’d been getting so much rain lately.
After exhausting ourselves swimming and hiking, we hopped back in the boat and went to a beautiful cafe on the water that Ella used to work at. We all got coffees and shared platters of fish and chips. It was so delicious! Not much is better than fresh seafood after a long swim 🙂 We spent about another hour cruising before heading back home. We all got back and were so beat after the long day. We just laid around and played with Ella’s adorable pup.
That night, Ella’s parents had a bunch of friends over for dinner. We got to meet so many lovely people. They were genuinely so excited to meet us and talk to us about their own travels throughout the states and their favorite parts of Australia. I was so shocked at how these adults, who were gathering to see each other, were so kind and engaging with us college kids. We all had wine, ate cheese and crackers, and talked for ages with them. It was so much fun and was a reminder, yet again, of how truly loving and kind the Australian culture is.
This definitely goes down in my book as one of my favorite weekends in Australia. Such a wonderful time meeting new people and engaging in lovely conversation. I am so thankful for my sweet friendship with Ella because she has truly embraced me and introduced me to her life, friends, family, and favorite spots. I have no doubt we will be friends for life even if we don’t see each other for a while when I leave. She is such a low maintenance person that I truly believe if I called her in 5 years to say I was visiting, we would pick back up right where we left off.