Sunday, December 21, 2008

I need a BLOG fix, Part IV

In Cairns we were busy busy busy, going to scuba school to get certified in a 5 day program which consisted of 2 days in the pool, and 3 days on a boat, doing dives along the Great Barrier Reef. It was exhausting: we'd spend 8 hours a day between the classroom and the pool, then have homework at night which took several hours to complete, before reporting back to school at 7am the next morning. Then at sea it was wake up calls of 5:30am for the 6am dive, slam down some breakfast between the first dive and the 8am dive, then briefings and additional lessons between the 11am and 4pm dives. It nearly felt like we were back at work!! (I'd love to know how many of you are openly cursing me at this very moment). Diving the reef was one of the most amazing experiences we've ever had, and we can't wait to dive other locations now that we're experts! More on scuba in subsequent blog posts....

From there we trained it down the coast to Airlie Beach, where we promptly jumped aboard another sea vessel – an 80ft sailboat this time. We cruised the Whitsunday Islands for another 2 days, stopping along the way to snorkel and sun ourselves on pure white silica sand that never manages to get hot. There we swam with rays and endless schools of fish in only knee deep water. On our last night I managed to pull a usual klutzo maneuver and slip on the boat deck, sending my knee off in a frighteningly unnatural direction. So we've been thankful for the few extra days we are 'stuck' in Airlie Beach before we catch the train to continue down the coast. I saw a doctor today and it's merely an “overextension of the co-lateral ligament” which in English means it's nothing too serious and I should be good to go in about 10 days. The trick between now and then is figuring out how to carry both backpacks..... What a strapping young lad I am lucky to be traveling with!

The next stop is Fraser Island, the largest sand island in the world as well as the only place where rainforest grows in sand (to plagiarize Lonely Planet), where we'll celebrate Christmas and spend a few nights on a 4WD sand safari tour (yes, we've really been breaking the budget with all the wild fun Australia offers). After that, we continue down to Surfer's Paradise and Byron Bay, where we plan to take surfing lessons, relax on the beach, and party it up for New Year's, as we hear it's a great place to be to ring in the New Year. Then we head north to Brisbane where we fly out to Bali on January 7th. Look at that – we're AHEAD of ourselves now!!!


Aini said...

wow, great shots!
i wanna learn diving!

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