I always keep my eyes open for interesting people, and Krista Scott just absolutely grabbed my attention. I first met Krista 2 days ago on a whitewater kayaking weekend where she accompanied our group to do our first kayaking lessons on the Ottawa River. In the van she told us that she recently did a 13 month trip to Australia where she did all sorts of harvest work in different locations. She also mentioned that she completed an ESL program at the university and is heading off for her first teaching assignment to Vietnam this fall. I knew at that stage that this was a very interesting young woman and I decided I would get to know her a bit better.
Krista is a very cute young woman, always in a good mood and sporting a great smile. Later that evening, Krista gave a special performance after sunset at the campground of something called “poise”, a former Martial art developed by the Maori people that involves the rhythmic twirling of two long wires that have a wick at the end that is set on fire. One of her co-workers was playing the bongos and the performance did have a very aboriginal feel to it. The image that is created in the dark is of circles of fires whirling around the performer in perfect coordination with the rhythm.
So without further ado, here is Krista Scott, a very adventurous, endearing young woman, as you will discover yourself.
Krista, spunky and full of life.
1) Please tell us about yourself.
I am 25 years old and I’m originally from Cobourg, Ontario. I have always loved the outdoors and loved to play outside. When I finished high school I wasn’t ready for university. I went travelling to the prairies and started working in a restaurant in Regina. I met a lot of cool people along the way. From there I went west to work in Alberta as well as in Whistler, B.C. There I worked in a grocery store and at Boston Pizza and spent the rest of my time snowboarding. I also ran into a lot of Aussies there. I knew this was a place that was going to suck you in with its addictive lifestyle, so I decided to head home. Based on my friendships with these people from Australia, I decided to get a working visa for that country, something that was pretty easy to get for a Canadian citizen. I had decided I wanted to go to Australia to travel and work there for a year.
2) Please tell us about your 13 month adventure in Australia.
After a couple of stopovers in Alaska and Hong Kong I landed in Australia. In Alaska I had a chance to see the Aurora Borealis, while Hong Kong struck me as a very busy and smoggy place. But the airport is on an island, which was really interesting.
I landed in Sydney and headed over to New South Wales to link up with a girl I had met at Whistler. I bought a 1984 Toyota Tourago camping van which had a flat nose because the engine was right under the seat. I had a tent and a stove and I lived out of the van. During this time I realized for the first time how little you need to live. I often slept on the roof of the van, looking at the stars.
In South Australia I stayed in a working hostel that connected me to harvest work opportunities. I found these places through the Lonely Planet guidebook, which was tremendously helpful. My first harvest work assignment was to sort potatoes in a shed. This was midnight work since the potatoes’ skins would crack during the day time. The heat was often stifling at 42 degrees Celsius. After the potato harvest I also harvested grapes and onions. In total I did about 3 months of harvest work there.
At that time the engine in my camper van seized up and I had to buy a new engine. After it was fixed, together with 8 other people we decided to drive to Central Australia and we visited Ayer’s Rock (Uluru) and various other little towns in the area. I heard lots of outback stories from the locals while we were there. We also went to a town called Cooper Pedy, a place where everybody lives underground in caves since the weather is too hot. We stayed in a hostel where the bunkbeds were located in a cave. While I was there I also talked to a group of Hell’s Angels bikers, who seemed to be pretty cool people as long as you didn’t upset them.
Krista performs “poise”, originally a Maori martial art