150 days down, 30 to go. This is my official five month update on the ‘Best Jobs in the World’ contract, Wildlife Caretaker position, South Australia.
There is a light Easterly breeze coming in off the Southern Ocean, I can hear the excitement at the back of the boat, its 8am and we’ve already seen two sharks, yesterday there were 8 and the day before, 15. The cage is in the water and we’re suiting up, its go time! …I’ll have to save that story for next week… this post is about the last five months as Wildlife Caretaker.
What a trip this has been thus far! For anybody stumbling across this post with no idea what the heck I’m writing about, for the last 150 days I have been exploring the wonderful state of South Australia and documenting all of the incredible experiences along the way. It has been the journey of a lifetime and one that is still going, right now! Awesome. Sharks.
The last month has been a special one, my Mom, Dad, and uncle Cam came to visit from Canada and I got to spend two weeks with them road tripping around the state. We had an amazing trip, full stop. It was a great opportunity for me to share with them this experience, showing off my favourite haunts, introducing them to some essential people, visiting stunning landscapes, cuddling the cutest of wildlife, and best of all spending time with the fam.
It was the first time to Aus for my parents and the second time for my uncle. We truly could not have had a better trip! If you’re interested in reading more about that journey, check this out The Great Australian Road Trip – Part III
With only 30 days left on my contract, I would be lying if I didn’t admit to thinking about that dreaded question of… what’s next…? It seems to be lurking in the very near future and yet at the same time I want to continue to focus on the moment and make the absolute most of this experience while it’s still happening. So with that being said, I have indeed begun to think about my plans for after ‘Best Jobs’, but I’ll have to wait to share that information just yet. For now it’s all about right now.
The last month has truly flown by. It has been another absolute whirlwind of activity, from the Yorke Peninsula, to road tripping with my family, to Tasting Australia and some office time in Adelaide, to here on the Rodney Fox Shark Expedition at the Neptune Islands. I really have been adamant about keeping on top of things daily and making sure that my organization is spot on. I am scheduled throughout the entire month and have been using the print out as a sort of calendar. It is the best way for me to understand the timeline demands I have placed on myself, for example, scheduling posts and understanding which photos are best to share and when, organizing my DropBox and getting the content to the people who need most it in the moment, making videos and sourcing incredible SA indie rock, contacting operators and brainstorming digital marketing ideas, etc. The job has been morphing and evolving continually and I am happy to say that I have a strong handle on understanding and completing the demands.
The Wildlife Caretaker position is all about helping to grow tourism to South Australia. It is our job to work together to promote SA internationally and domestically. I have been amazed at the overwhelming support that this campaign has received from not only the local operators, but also the state tourism industry as a whole, the hotels, the transport businesses, the marketing agencies, the councils, the third party affiliates, everyone. It has been an amazing reaction thus far and is picking up speed. People are starting to take note of the awesome adventures available in SA and the word is spreading. There is a certain hype surrounding this state and we are here taking full advantage of it.
From the produce and the wine to the landscapes and the wildlife, from the people and their stories to the activities and the adrenaline, there is so much to see and do. We have been dedicated towards making the time to document and highlight as much as possible, and over the last five months, have successfully done so. This trend is not stopping anytime soon. I write this update from a table in the common room of a shark cage diving boat, having just come out of the cage photographing Great Whites from 25m under. I believe that every day is an opportunity to make the most of the beautiful life we are graciously afforded. Luckily for me, being in South Australia is a pretty damn good place to do so!!
Stay tuned for the next couple weeks. I have some incredible shark footage to share, an update on the Gawler Ranges, a trip to the Flinders with fellow ‘Best Jobs’ winner Elisa Deterez, and a special surprise about what’s up next for this intrepid Canadian adventurer!
Bon Voyage et Bonne Chance!!