20 work days straight... 13 weeks later... 84 working days in total with only 11 days off... it has all come to an end. Wow, it is hard to believe that it is over already... I am very excited about the up coming weeks however, I am also a bit sad. There is such something about the country up here in the Northern Territory... you literally fall in love with it-- the people are just so different up here as well. Everyone I have met has been just so lovely. I know I will be back to this country again but, when? That is unknown. 
The last few days have been quite good Martial, John and I have been putting out the last of the lick all around the station. Then Martial and I did some more painting and a little bit of fencing. My last day today was fantastic!! We spent the whole morning driving around Gilnockie putting out the lick, it was so great just to be able to take it in. It was also nice to get to spend some time with John and just chat as we drove... Martial was following behind us in the tractor. We came back for a quick cup of tea went back out again then came home for lunch. After lunch John took me up in the helicopter for about 20 minutes... it is such an amazing feeling being in a small helicopter... and the view of the station is absolutely breath taking!!! You get such a high afterwards... it makes me want to me a helicopter pilot every time. John is a known legend in flying, he was flown over 70,000 hours and that is not including the times he has flown for personal reasons or what ever. Pretty impressive! After the ride in the chopper Martial and I check a fence, painted the main gain and did a few last things to get the ute ready for the trip into town tomorrow. Helen made the most amazing meal!!! Her roasts which I have said before are the best and then for dessert she made this dark chocolate lava thing... it was sooo yummy. Super stuffed now, pretty sure I cancelled out the workout I did before hand! Hahahaha. Anyway's I am all packed... painted my nails and am starting to feel like a girl again. Heading to town at 7:30am... should get there around 10:30/11am and than I a meeting Mark and Jack for lunch at the Coffee Club... Jack and I than catch a bus at 12:55pm to Darwin. We stay the night there with the same guy I couched surfed with when I arrived back in May... Tuesday we fly to Bali!!! Its all happening. I have so much to look forward too and so much to be thankful for. Life is super amazing when you make the most of it... and I am! Till next time. -Nikki x 
 
 
I thought this was an interesting read. The live export is something that I have been learning about while I've been here in Australia. Living and working on a cattle station you see things from a different perspective.... In the past I probably would have been one of those people who would have walked into the Body Shop and signed this petition not really knowing what I was doing-- the lives that I would be affecting, the jobs that would be lost, the people who would suffer a loss. I feel that the live export industry is something that one can not be biased on. What I mean is that I don't want animals to suffer however, I don't want to see people suffer either.... this industry is more than just the export of live animals.... it feeds the mouths of many people in Indonesia and in the NT of Australia it is how many cattle station owners survive. Why do we always work against one another? When will we start seeing that we need to work together to figure out the best solution so everyone can win... However, in the end isn't it all for personal gain? Hummm... I may be getting off topic here now (lol), I may stop my thoughts here. 
 
 
Work day number 17 in a row now.... however, I am feeling pretty good. It's a bit different when you are not on your own. The cattle work is all over now until second round which I will not be here for. It took us about a month. The crew left today so it is now just John, Helen, Judith (Helen's mum), the French student and I. Pretty quiet... to quiet both Frenchy and I are missing everyone. We all got along so well, like a family in so many ways-- especially when you spend almost 24/7 with each other. I only have 3 days left here though and than I am heading into town on Monday to catch a bus to Darwin with and than flying to Bali for a week on Tuesday... pretty excited about that-- a lil' treat for my hard working summer which consisted of a lot of alone time and isolation from the outside world. It was nice though, I wouldn't change a thing. After Bali I fly to Perth for a week to visit Madi and than I arrive home on the 30th!!
It was different having the crew here, I didn't get to spend as much time with the cattle as I would have liked too... but, it was great when I did. I love the hard work, always on your toes. Being out here you get such a different perspective on things: like food production and the amount of work that goes into it and just how the world works. I am really glad I chose to come here this summer, its been an amazing 13 weeks in so many ways. As much as I enjoyed being out here on my own though in the beginning... my summer really kicked off when I met all these amazing people-- so if you guys read this: Thank you so much for being a part of this experience here at Gilnockie 2012. You will never be forgotten, each of you will hold a place in my heart always. 
Anyway's, now that the cattle work is all over we are just putting out another huge lick run, checking and fixing some fences and going to do a bit more painting... I also need to pack and organize all the things I need to get done for Uni-- so much work to be done! Hahahaha. All good though. 
Well till next time. -Nikki 
 
 
Well things have been going good... except the fact that I am still fencing when I am not in the yard which drives me nuts. However, I know it all needs to be done. Presently, I am just sitting in the boys room listening to music, drinking red wine and having a laugh-- these guys are just so great!! The great thing about travelling-- meeting amazing people whom you will never forget. Next few days will get pretty busy... we should be done of all the cattle work by the end of next week I think... than I am thinking possibly about going to Bali for a week and than to Perth-- we will see, so many options. Life is good. I don't really have a whole lot to say. I have had an enjoyable experience here this time around however, I feel that it is time to say goodbye to Gilnockie-- I have learned so much from this place and I will never forget it but, like all good things they must come to and end. Like most things in life you eventually have to let go and move on. Anyways, write more soon. -Nikki x
 
 
Well its all been happening here the last few days!! I came back to the station on the Monday and got settled back in. The new crew rocked up on Wednesday night, its been back and forth between cattle work in the yard and fencing. Than there is all the little things that need to get done during the days. Anyway's, things are great out here... its just me and all these boys: Mark, Jack, Scottish Jack, Nathan and Frenchie (Martial). We are all having so much fun. There has been heaps of people coming and going from Helen's family and John's. Its really great considering this will probably be my last time here on Gilnockie. Its hard to focus on my studies when there are people around though.... we start earlier and finish later so my days are shorter. 
 
 
Well it was a fun filled weekend in Katherine. The Show is a really big event that goes around the country to different towns. Camp drafting, horse jumping, rodeo, rides, markets, food and of course a bar. One things Aussie's know how to do is have a good time! It was a heap of fun spending time with my work mates and meeting a heap of new people. Didn't get to much sleep or study done however hahaha. Back to work tomorrow and should be pretty flat out for the next few weeks again. Write more soon -Nikki 

 
 

 
 

Well, it has been a few days. I have just been either much to busy or way to tired to get on here and write out my thoughts. I just finished working 19 days straight... I am exhausted in every which way and am looking forward to having the next few days off to do some reading (hopefully), relax and spend some  party time with my mates that I was working with out here. After 9 weeks out bush I am really ready for a break. I will be ready to come back but honestly you just hit a breaking point and you need to get out. You need to put some mascara on and look like a girl. See other people.... feel apart of society! Hahahaha. I love it out here, but every once and awhile it takes its toll on you. 
It took a lot out of me having people around. I am such a routine person and after 2 months out here alone I was in such a routine and of course that got all messed up with people coming and the food changing a bit. Its amazing how your body knows when things like that change. However, it was such a blast having them out here. The three of us, Madi, Mark and Jack all got along really well... I felt so alone and sad lying in bed last night when they left after tea. Mark and Madi are not coming back... Mark is going on holiday to NZ and Madi back to Uni. I think Jack is coming back, it would be nice to have someone around again that I know. Frenchy is also coming in 6 days or something... so all my alone time is pretty much gone. But that's ok. Different experiences are good... its just hard to believe how fast time is going. At first it seems like the days are going slow and than all of a sudden 'bang' its time to go! Crazy. 
Its one thing I have never gotten used to as I have travelled. Saying 'goodbye.' It never gets easy. Just knowing you might never see that person again is some what terrifying? I don't know if that is the word but as I said to Madi: "I was enchanted to meet you..." It is so true. Each of these people, I feel enchanted to have met. In some small way they have left a mark on my soul and I know I will always remember them.... even if I only spent 2 weeks with them. However, 2 weeks out bush feels much longer!!!! Its almost like a lil' community out here. 
The last 2 weeks have been yard work with the cattle and a few days between there of fencing and other small jobs that needed to get done. Yesterday (Thursday) we walked the cattle out to a watering hole. It took us the whole day... it was over 18km or something... a far journey for the lil' guys. We were on quad bikes and the ute. There is something about being out bush and walking the cattle to the water. Silence, peace, surrounded by nature. We had 400+ head and just as we were about to the water the mob went into the scrub. It was very think and we couldn't get them all back, John had to come help us in the Helicopter.... we got most them back. I think we were short 5 or something. I understand it must be hard for some of you to comprehend what it is I am talking about... hahahaha. 
Anyways, there is so much that has happened-- both good and some not the most pleasant. That is the way it goes though. I am really looking forward to having these next few days off, to just chill and hopefully get for at least one run. I am staying with John's daughter in Katherine. Both her and her husband are very lovely, and they have three beautiful kids. I am going in with their son-in-law Paul who is also going to stay with them. We are both looking forward to the time away! Well I will try and write more again soon. Till next time -Nikki x
 
 
The last week has just been crazy busy... 12 hour days starting at 6:30am and ending at 6:30/7:00pm. In the yard most days however, spending a few days fencing and getting other small jobs done. This is my 13th day working straight so its pretty full on. The Katherine Show is next weekend and I think we are all getting a few days off which will be good so I have that to look forward too. My room-mate Madi is pretty great, we've been doing workouts, having chocolate sessions, Milo's... we get along really well! Yesterday evening I got to go for a ride in the helicopter which was amazing. The country looks so beautiful from up above and it was an amazing site to see all the cattle being mustered down the lane way-- absolutely breathtaking. Ah, I just love the country out here. There shall always be a piece of my heart left here-- "The Never Never." 
It has been very hot here the last few days... just sweating madly. We've been going for swims at lunch or at the end of the day which is really awesome. My whole routine has been a bit dismantled the last week as well... just having people around, longer days... etc. It also makes it a bit harder to focus on studies as well. Anyway's, hard to believe how fast time is going by, before we know it summer will be over! Will write more soon. -Nikki
 
 
The last few days have been pretty flat out. Friday and Saturday were spent in the yards so I am pretty exhausted after all that. Today Madi and I just spent the day fencing, tomorrow John will muster again and than we will be in the yards for the next few days after that. Its pretty great having people out here however, it is a bit hard to focus. It kinda feels more like a summer holiday as its a bit more fun with some young people around. Anyway's, I don't really have much to say. Things are good, as always learning lots. Will write more soon and in a bit more detail lol. Till next time -Nikki x