Our final morning on the Tiwi Islands is greeted with strong emotions as we say goodbye to new friends and a landscape that is still largely untouched by mainstream Australians. It is bitter sweet as our adventure that took many months of planing finally comes to an end where its sight and sounds will fade into a clouded memory. The highlights such as the vibrant blue waters, mangroves on the water edges and smiles of the Tiwi people will always remain a part of us. As Bushy said on our last day ‘you are part of me now and part of the Bush family forever’. Equally we will forever be connected in our hearts to these magical islands, Bushy and family, and every other soul that we met in our expedition.
Our departure from Tiwi Islands was via a turbo prop plane which I have to say is never my favorite form of transport, as I have a fear of flying which has never been resolved. Nevertheless this time I felt a sense of peace despite my pending trepidation waiting for the plane. As I sit in the container, our check-in lounge waiting for the plane to land I began to reflect. I know without a doubt that our time on Tiwi Islands has been a privilege, as its not always a destination open to tourist wanting to access the islands without being part of a tour group. I would personally like to thank all the Tiwi Islander community for their heartfelt generosity and particularly our host Bushy, Mark Pollard (Tiwi Islands Regional Council) and the Tiwi Land Council for making a dream possible. We would also like to thank Seaswift and staff for transporting our 4WD and boat (River Spirit) safely to and from Melville Island by barge – a truly unique mode of transport to such a remote area.
Stay tuned for some homeward bound photos and some highlight photos from the Tiwi Islands when we get home and organise all video and photo footage of this remarkable place.
Another year and another exciting Kiss Goodbye to MS expedition – Surviving the Tiwi Islands! The challenge of this fundraiser is to live self-sufficiently off the land. In other words hunt and gather most of our food, survive the crocs,
snakes, wild boars, jellyfish & every other dangerous Australian animal. This might get interesting though as our only food source so far has been the local supermarket and we don’t seem to be very successful at fishing either. During our Murray River Expedition last year we only managed to catch one fish. The main lesson I hope to come home with though is an appreciation for nature and all she provides for us.
We couldn’t be more grateful to the Tiwi Islands Land Council and community for allowing us to be guests on their land. We have been corresponding with them for the past few months in preparing for our 2016 Kiss Goodbye to MS fundraiser and look forward to bringing all our experiences to our followers once again via the blog. The plan is that an elder will spend time with us the first week in learning how to hunt and gather and thereafter we will attempt to survive ourselves with little assistance.
It is expected that mainland Australians will be so inspired by our daily blog and amazing photos taken by my husband Kiam once again that people will feel motivated to make a donation in the hope of one day finding a cure for this insidious disease. But don’t worry if you miss the blogs as at the conclusion of our adventure will be producing a book and short film with proceeds going toward MS research. While I’m sure our blogs will most likely will be comical, reflective and display beautiful scenery I hope to also highlight the many challenges for someone living with MS symptoms as I cope with Island life and the many challenges it will pose such as the humidity and isolation with very little creature comforts. So stay tuned for the commencement of our journey as we head off on the 27th August with our car & boat on the 3,800kms long road trip up the centre of this great country of ours to Darwin and then across 90kms by barge to the beautiful Tiwi Islands.