Au Pair in Australia…
and Explore the World!
Dear Future World Travelers,
I became an Au Pair in Australia through GeoVisions mainly because I’m from a small town in New York, and I believe if you don’t explore the world while you’re young, chances are you never will.
I love where I’m from, and I adore the people I’ve grown up with, but like many families I know, they’ve never seen the world. There’s nothing wrong with that; it just isn’t the life I want for myself. When I ended up staying home and commuting to college, I realized if I didn’t do something after graduation I would end up carrying on my schooling and never getting away.
My parents reminded me they never had the opportunity to travel when they were my age and if I didn’t take advantage of such an amazing opportunity now, it would be foolish. Questions regarding schooling often came up. When would I go to grad school to get my Masters Degree? My thoughts: school isn’t going anywhere and I have the rest of my life to work. Why waste my twenties working when I’ll be working until I’m in my seventies? There’s always going to be time to work, but if you’re the type of person that plans on having a family one day, much like myself, there won’t always be time to travel.
When the time came to choose a place to be an Au Pair, Australia stuck out to me. It’s beautiful with endless adventures to be had. It was really hard for me to decide if I wanted to be that far away from my family. I’m 22-years-old and I’ve never been away from my family for more than two weeks. It was a scary decision, but with the support I received, it was finalized; I would live in Melbourne, Australia for a year.
Yes, being an Au Pair is work, but not many can say they’ve lived in another country for a year.
Well correction, not many can say they’ve lived in another country for a year for free. I was very lucky when I was placed with the family I am currently living with. They are the sweetest people and the two children are adorable (ages 5 and 2). After our first Skype meeting, I was comfortable speaking to them.
When it came time to fly to Australia and actually meet them in person, I wasn’t nervous at all. I was more nervous about the 30-hour trip I was about to embark on! When I was getting off the plane, I was excited, yet delirious. My first week in Australia was exhausting because of the time difference, but the whole time my host family was making sure I was ok and comfortable.
My work week is Monday through Thursday. During the day I sometimes have to bring the 5 year old to school, return home to do physical therapy exercises with the 2 year old, lots of laundry and dishes, grocery shopping, errands, library, the park, prepare lunch, pick up the 5 year old from school, prepare snacks, do Montessori school work with both children and prepare dinner. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t a lot of work and unfortunately we don’t get paid much, but we live in another country for free and you can’t put a price on the experience!
The number one thing I think anyone should establish when becoming an Au Pair is setting a routine. With a routine everything goes much easier and your days go faster. Also, having a family that makes you feel at home is very important. Like I said, I was very lucky with my placement from the day I walked into their home. They made me feel very comfortable and welcomed.
While in Australia I plan on traveling and seeing A LOT. I’ve even made a “must do trips while in Australia” list, consisting of at least 20 different adventures. I’ve only been in Australia for two months so I haven’t seen much but a few places I have been to: Lorne, which is on the Great Ocean Road, Phillip Islands “Penguin Parade”, Moonlight Sanctuary, Mornington Peninsula, and Wilsons Prom for camping.
Within the next couple of weeks I will be heading to Sydney, New Zealand, the Great Barrier Reef, the Yarra Valley Winery, and the Great Ocean Road for a second time. I’m so excited to expand my knowledge and get a better understanding of the culture here in Australia and to travel the world!
“Travel as much as you can, as far as you can, as long as you can. Life is not meant to be lived in one place.” –Unknown