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And so it begins…..

Almost 10 years to the day from the date we arrived in Australia, we are finally off. Australia farewells us with a Brisbane summer thunderstorm. Are the gods angry with us?

Months and months of planning and finally we are on our way. We celebrate with a gin and tonic. But, to be honest, we have mixed emotions combined with exhaustion, a result of frantic last minute jobs and perhaps a few too many nights of leaving drinks.

In Singapore we stay with an old uni mate, Graham, his wife Sharon and 4 month-old Kaida. It’s the perfect way to start, not least because they live in a palatial apartment with a pool and a view to die for.

Singapore night sky

Singapore night sky

We are on a budget for the first time in many years – which is going to take some getting used to. Our fiends generously invite us for cocktails at the top of the Marina Bay Sands hotel, and as we watch the sun setting over the harbour with Indonesia in the distance, we realise its going to be all downhill from here!

drinks at the Marina Bay Sands Hotel with Graham, Sharon & Kaida

drinks at the Marina Bay Sands Hotel with Graham, Sharon & Kaida

Indeed it is. We are unable to collect our Uzbek visa and will have to try again on the road. The officials are very polite, but the answer is “Its just not possible”. We might be hearing more of this…

big fail at the Uzbek Embassy in Singapore

big fail at the Uzbek Embassy in Singapore

The taxi driver spends the entire journey warning us about Malaysia, its people its prime minister, its anti-Singapore policies and more (we stopped listening) on the trip to the railway station to catch the train to Kuala Lumpur.

It was good to meet up with Guy & Cheryl and Rob & Robyn again at the station.  The Earthcruiser folks of course elected to travel first class, but they quickly redeemed themselves by bringing us cake. Its 6 hours on the ‘express’ train, and we savour letting someone else do the driving for the last time.

We understand the vehicles have arrived in KL. It remains to be seen how long it will take us to get them out of customs…

On our way…?

There won’t be any posts here until we are…  you guessed it… on our way!!

Rough start date for now is 21 February 2013. The plan at the moment is to fly to Singapore, pick up some visas in Singapore (the ones we can’t get in Australia) and then train to Kuala Lumpur where we will reunite with Lara (our Defender). That way we travel end-to-end overland too 🙂

Shipping of Lara is planned in the first week of February and it will take roughly 3 weeks to get to Kuala Lumpur from Brisbane.

See you back here in a few months from now!

Update 22 Jan:

Loading of Lara has now been locked in for 1 Feb (as long as we can find our carnet which the RACQ tell us they have sent, the post office says it was delivered yesterday, but we haven’t seen anything!!) and we fly to Singapore on 25 Feb. Picking up Lara in KL is scheduled for 28 Feb at the moment.

I wish I would say our list of things to do is getting smaller, but it just seems to get longer and longer… Only just over a month to go to tick them all off!