Within my first minute of arriving in Darwin, a wild town on the edge of the Outback, I met a cowboy named Tony.
I pulled into the car wash to blast the red dirt from my campervan, after months of driving around Australia.
And there he was, the hottest man I had seen in a long time.
Black hair, tanned skin, sunglasses, a cheeky grin, and a large hose.
I must’ve looked pretty hot, because he took one look at me and asked: “Do you wanna get wet?”
“Yessss,” I gasped, sweating, from eight hours of driving without air-conditioning. He smiled, turned on the hose, and sprayed me down.
It was not the beginning of a terrible porn scene, but the start of a relationship.
Tony invited me to visit him at his second job as a bartender at the Beachfront Hotel — the roughest pub in Darwin, which is saying something. Free beer was mentioned.
I sat at the bar as he slid me schooners and told me his life story, as an oil rigger, a horse whisperer, a bull rider in rodeos. I was hooked.
At midnight he gave me his house keys and told me to stop sleeping in that van and use his bed. He worked until 4am, and he’d just crash on the couch. I didn’t need any convincing.
True to his word, he left me alone in his bedroom, and I stayed for the next few nights. He was rarely home, working night and day. Eventually I suggested he might like to join me.
The next few months were a crazy blur of parties, adventures and laughter.
One day he came home, excited about an opportunity. He’d been offered a job to manage a bar in Thailand, starting next week. Did I want to come? Of course!
Tony booked the flights and his employer organised a place for us to live. At the airport, he handed me my ticket.
“Shiiiiiit, Tony, you’ve booked the wrong destination! This says Taipei!!”
“Yeah, Taipei,” he replied. “Capital of Thailand.”
I just stared at him, gobsmacked.
“Oh, Tony,” I sighed. “Taipei is the capital of Taiwan.”
He double-checked the job paperwork. Yep. Taipei, Taiwan.
It was too late. He’d signed the contract. We’d moved out of our home. I had no job, not even a laptop.
So, what did we do? We got on that plane to Taiwan and we didn’t move to Thailand. 🤷♀️
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Fabulous story, Louise!!!