Trip Start Nov 06, 2009
Trip End Mar 26, 2010

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Flag of Australia  , New South Wales,
Monday, January 11, 2010

We arrived in Byron Bay with the sun still shining and drove straight to our accommodation at Atlantic Beach guest house,
a kind of posh backpackers in one half with some nice "Deluxe doubles" in the other half. The "travelers" as Luc and I had become
affectionately known, were of course booked into the backpacker part in a basic double and our holidaying companions were in the
deluxe doubles next door; but to our delight the nice chap at reception decided to upgrade the travelers to the deluxe doubles
so we were all together! It turned out that the deluxe rooms were all in a self contained 4 bedroom house called Little Palm.
Little Palm wasn't quite the Noosa starlight suite, but it was very nice none the less.
We didn't really get up to much in Byron apart from lounging on the beach and generally chilling out, although Chin and I
did hire boards and have a bit of a surf.
Loz and I also got up for a pre breakfast dive at Julian Rocks, which unfortunately wasn't in the easiest of conditions.
The visibility was only about 2 metres and there was a very strong current so it turned into a very challenging (but fun)
drift dive rather than the leisurely aquarium like dive that we had hoped for. It was a good job we are both Chop trained BSAC
(British Sub Aqua Club) divers, else we may have struggled like the flapping PADI divers who in the truck on the way to the dive
were trying to out do each other on the "I just dived here and then I dived there" conversation to which Loz and I just raised
the odd knowing eyebrow to each other. We actually came up with a new underwater signal for these out of control flappy diver
types, which was to basically point to your chosen flapper, give a mimicking arm flap followed by the international sign for
The only problem with this was the resulting mask leaks from our laughter! Apart from flappers, we also saw a couple of Rays
and a massive sleeping turtle and lots and lots of nice corals and fish, most of which were at the end of the dive when the
flappers had sucked all there air and had to surface and Loz and I signalled to the Dive master that we were abandoning them
 and going alone.

From Byron it was back to Brisbane for the sad departure of the holiday crew but the exciting prospect of the whitsunday
 islands for the travelers! This wasn't without incident though. We were cruising up the freeway in the hot hot sun, suddenly
a blue light flashed us from behind, how bizarre..... There was a jerk on the brakes and an "oh Bugger"
from our driver Chin. He was doing 120 in a 100, and unlike my incident in South Africa where Gina (Luc's sister)
simply said, "Oh don't worry darling, we never pay the fines here" we didn't think the Aussie nazi traffic police would let
us off so lightly. But after Chin had fished out his old school paper driving license and they had umm'd and ah'd at it and
questioned in disbelief the expiry date of 2048, and chin had given them a load of crap about enjoying their beautiful country
, they went off for a mini conference and came back having decided to let him off with a warning as they didn't want to ruin
 his and his "families" (Us lot in the car) holiday!! ha ha! They didn't want the international admin more like! Anyway we were very happy
to avoid a hefty fine and were less swiftly on our way!

We had a last supper with the holiday crew and Damian in Brisbane before we all went our separate ways the next morning.
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