When I was 16, I spent my first Christmas away from my family (we did presents and stuff a few days early instead). Along with about 12 others from my scout district, I headed off to Perth for a Venture (this is a huge camp for Venturers, like a scout Jamboree. People travelled from across Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and more to attend, and we had a ball.)

We left on Christmas Eve, packed into two vehicles (a people mover and a 4 wheel drive). Christmas night we were in a place called Ceduna for our Christmas feast. To be honest, I don’t remember what we ate but we laughed a lot as we ate and I do remember what we drank. Our district leader wanted to give us a treat so bought us a bottle of sparkling wine; he also wanted to conserve our collective funds so he purchased some cheap Spumante. And spew-mante is definitely what we called it…

Over Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, we covered some 2890 km (from Melbourne to Norseman) and viewed some of the diversity of Australia – metropolitan Melbourne and Adelaide, rural Victoria, the Great Australian Bite and part of the Nullarbor Plain.

It was a very different Christmas for me – rough, no presents, sitting in a car for most of it – but I wouldn’t change it for the world as I saw so much of Australia and had a great time with friends.

In fact, now that I have thought about that trip again, I think we will have a travelling Christmas soon – probably next year.