When I expressed the vague desire to travel up Australia's east coast, Byron Bay was the only place that received universal praise. You've got to go to Byron Bay, Dave. Byron Bay's so laid back, you'd love it there, Dave.
Do these people know anything about my personality?
I did actually like Byron Bay - as usual, when leaving civilisation behind and trampling through subtropical rainforest - but I don't get what I was supposed to find enthralling about the people of Byron Bay, who seemed to be the same self-absorbed, vegetating wasters in perpetual search of chronic drugs that I hadn't been impressed by when I'd met them in other countries.
Even if their lifestyle did appeal to me, why do I have to go somewhere to appreciate it? I understand that for surfing you need waves, but there are plenty of places where I can feel chilled out (yeah alright, not me, but people in general). Being surrounded by twats doesn't make me more inclined to be one.
The typical Byron Bay guy carries a surfboard, doesn't wear anything above the waist and has curly hair that's probably natural but looks permed and bleached anyway, and seems to be in an uncomfortable middle-ground between respectable and long. It doesn't look like it's a deliberate style, more like they were all impressed by a long-haired backpacker they saw six months ago and are just waiting for nature to catch up. The typical Byron Bay woman is unrealistically attractive, to the point that they're not even really appealing.
So as you can see, visiting Byron Bay for a few days didn't lighten me up, and you can expect more lazy, borderline racist, borderline sexist observations where those came from. Doubtless if I was an Aussie visiting the UK, I'd comment on the prevalence of teenagers in tracksuits with cigarettes, bastard progeny and dangerous dogs. Or something. I haven't been there for a while, I might not be up to date on twat trends.
I'm heading to the pothead Mecca of Nimbin next, so we'll see if being in the vicinity of jazz cigarettes and crazy gravy granules has any passive effects on me. Obviously I'm not going to play with those funny cigarettes or anything myself, mother.
Even the pigeons are desperate to look alternative in Byron Bay
The koala of birds
I found these beach crabs more captivating than the women in bikinis, or at least there are fewer ethical issues with posting their pictures online.
Also, trying to snap a photo before they were vacuumed back into their holes was good exercise for my reflexes, like a humane Whack-a-Mole
Surf rescue heroes. I don't have any sympathy for people who get injured doing sports in general. Did you break your arm playing football? Don't play football then. If I fall into a volcano or die in a plane crash, I accept it's my own stupid fault for travelling (without insurance I don't have anyone else to blame)
The walk around Cape Byron and Palm Valley was lovely, plus the rain kept most of the humans away, so I can stop being a dick now
Always love a lighthouse. No, it's not the one from Round the Twist
Australia runs out here. Do I really have to go back?
The next day it stopped raining, the sun came out and Byron Bay didn't seem so bad any more. Getting a full night's sleep in a bed rather than 30 interspersed minutes on an upright train seat might have played a part too. So I guess you can forget all those grumpy things I said yesterday, sorry for taking up your time. Sorry, bye, sorry