Our Trip to Australia

September 15, 2014
In this month of September, I am going to take the opportunity to talk about an adventure instead of a product.  As the summer months fade away and the fall leaves begin to hit the ground, we are still fresh from our long trip to Sydney, Australia.  For the first time, Foster-Stephens’ attended a dry cleaning show down under in the fabulous city of Sydney.  This was the first dry cleaning show in New South Wales in 20 years.  Foster-Stephens’ has had customers in Australia for over 40 years and this was a great opportunity to go out and meet them as well as meet new potential customers.  We attended the show in support of our distributor in Sydney, Spencer Systems as well as our biggest customer group, the Association of Wedding Gown Specialists.  We make specific, archival and customized boxes for this group’s entire wedding gown cleaning process and they have several members in Australia.  The owner of Foster-Stephens’, Nancy Jones,  actually headed over several weeks before the show with her husband to do plenty of sight-seeing as there is so much to see! I intended to arrive in time for the show but due to things out of my control (airlines of course) I was forced an unexpected layover in Los Angeles for 24 hours.  Not the funnest thing, but I had my hubby with me, I kept my cool, and went shopping for clothes and necessities (did I mention they kept my luggage for the 24 hours?) and arrived in Sydney with enough time to get ready for the show and be a few hours late.  The 3 day show took place Friday-Sunday and many people came out to see what is new in the dry cleaning industry.  We received such great feedback and excitement on our products!  I did not have the samples I had hoped to hand out as again, the airline lost my only piece of luggage that was nothing but products and safely returned it to me at the end of the show. Bummer.  But all was not lost!  We had a great time and met such wonderful people.  Hopefully we will have someone to distribute to consumers in Australia as well as we receive requests to ship there every week.  So Nancy headed back to the US and I headed out to Port Douglas in Cairns for several days of adventure, including snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef!  It was absolutely stunning!  We hiked the Mossman Gorge, we went out crocodile sightseeing on a river and spotted 8 crocs including the huge 14 foot Scarface.  We drove through the Tablelands and saw waterfalls, Lake Echam which is made from a crater and the town where my daughter lived for 6 months while doing avian research.  Sadly, our trip had to come to an end.  It was a very long trip coming home with 3 flights and several layovers in airports for a total traveling time of 37 hours…..but so worth it.  I would definitely go back again someday as there was one thing I just cannot believe I never saw.  The elusive kangaroo……crikey!! 

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