Iowa girl on clip­per ad­ven­ture sail

Whitsunday Times - - NEWS | WELCOME - Back­packer chats

NAME: COURT­NEY MCDER­MOTT

AGE: 27

HOME: IOWA, UNITED STATES AF­TER a hec­tic ses­sion on­board the party boat, At­lantic Clip­per, the Whit­sun­day Times caught up with 27-year-old Court­ney McDer­mott from Iowa while in re­cov­ery mode at the la­goon.

Hav­ing met a guy in Mex­ico on a pre­vi­ous trip, Court­ney made plans for whirl­wind three-week Aus­tralian visit where she would take in the sights of Syd­ney, the Whit­sun­days and then re­turn to the US.

Also a “last chance tourist” to the Great Bar­rier Reef, the emer­gency room phar­ma­cist wants to get out and see the “things that are dis­ap­pear­ing”.

On re­turn­ing to Syd­ney, Court­ney will catch up with a cou­ple she met in Ire­land, a girl she was in­tro­duced to in Hawaii and the guy from Mex­ico for a fi­nal get to­gether be­fore head­ing back to her home town of Teeds­grove.

■ Where is your favourite place to hang out in the Whit­sun­days?

We had an af­ter party at the Boat­ies and the food was good and the staff was very un­der­stand­ing of our row­di­ness.

■ What is the weird­est thing about Aus­tralian cul­ture?

Peo­ple are a lot more blunt here and guys are not afraid to put them­selves out there when they are danc­ing and singing. And it seems weird but they are more re­spect­ful. I haven’t been cat called or what I felt like was in­ap­pro­pri­ately come on to.

■ What is your best Aus­tralian travel tip?

Prepa­ra­tion is great but don’t get too stuck in your plans. The abil­ity to be flex­i­ble and to change your plans when you need to or want to is im­por­tant.

Peo­ple some­times, es­pe­cially girls from the US I have no­ticed, lit­er­ally have a spread sheet so then, when some­thing hap­pens and their plans de­vi­ate, it ru­ins their whole trip.

■ How has your Aus­tralian ex­pe­ri­ence changed you?

On my first trip away I was in Spain for two months and I was deeply home­sick be­cause I was very iso­lated at first. But once I forced my­self out here, made con­nec­tions with peo­ple and learnt to speak the lan­guage it be­came eas­ier to make con­nec­tions with peo­ple.

PHOTO: PETER CAR­RUTHERS

LA­GOON LOUNG­ING: Court­ney McDer­mott, 27, kicks back at the la­goon af­ter a Whit­sun­day sailing ad­ven­ture.

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