Cruising the Islands

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

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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Saturday, January 16, 2010

A short flight from Brisbane to the funniest little airport I have ever seen, Proserpine, left us a short transfer
from Airlie Beach, the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands. Unfortunately, with the holiday crew gone there was no swanky
apartments to crash at so we were back to basics in the backpackers again.
We were booked on to a catamaran called Powerplay for our 2 night trip around the Islands and fortunately for us we ended
up getting a pretty good crew and a nice group of our age ish passengers.

Our Skipper was Darren, a 30 something Aussie.
Our 2 crew / Dive instructors were an early 20's Aussie called Timmy and a mid twenties Canadian girl called CJ.
We also had a cook / Dive master called Jake who was also a twenty something Aussie.
All seemed very chirpy and nice and very eager to get as many dives in as possible which was great.

There were 18 passengers in total, and as we were only on there for 3 days I don't think I can remember them all,
but I will give it a go so you can get an idea of who we were with.

Martin and Catherine - Very nice honeymooners from east London. He worked on the underground init, (He wasn't black, merely an eastender)
 and she worked at Morgan Stanley and was also a singer in a band. They were traveling around Oz in a 3 bed mobile home! ha ha

Katie - A Welsh girl from Aberistwith who worked in Caaaaardif. Very nice girl, thick Welsh accent which Luc was (in a
welsh accent) absolutely fascinated by and thought it was faaabulous! (luc - she is hysterical, the welsh accent is just

Mark and Jenna - young, "we're good looking and we know it" types from Cambridge but very much a stereotypical Essex couple.
(luc - hell, the scariest girl ive ever met, scarier than sherrelle from the africa trip!)

Lauren, Claire and ? - 3 more Welsh girls traveling round Oz for a year. All nice, but didn't get to know them really.

Jamie and Lisa - A nice young couple just out of Uni who had just traveled through India.

Chris - A weird English guy who moved to Canada and now sounds and acts like a weird Canadian. Well, a Canadian, they're
all weird aren't they?!

Verina - Or something like that. A nice German girl who was my buddy for dives 1 and 2.

Laura and Michelle - 2 nice English girls who were traveling through Oz and NZ etc.. (luc - these were my other fav's)

I can't remember the others so they were obviously unremarkable.
Anyway, off we went with our new friends.

 We were very lucky with the weather as it had been raining up here for the 2
weeks before we got here, but we had no rain and plenty of sunshine!
Timmy, one of the dive instructors had told Luc that he wold see what he could do in getting her qualified which was
a bonus as we hadn't really planned on getting it finished till Cairns.

(i'll take over from here as im starting to yawn reading daves factual account;)

Anyway, so dave was very eager for me to finish my padi (probably because he could see the fear growing in my eyes every
time someone mentioned scuba!) He had a chat with the DM Timmy who said he would see what he could do...(secretly i was
hoping he wouldnt have time as the last thing i wanted to do was have the experience i'd had back in durbs, i was quite done 
with self inflicted torture thank you very much!)
Anyway, so off we went to see our boat, wow, it was awesome! Really cool catamaran with a top and bottom deck and a jacuzzi
up front to take the views in from, wicked sweeeet! And this time setting foot on a boat i was much more prepared and had
managed to purchase the strongest sea sick pills legally possible, so with all the other wimps doing their deep breaths over
the deck i was feeling very smug and we all set off for our first dive of the day just off Hamilton Island.
Unfortunately due to dave eagerness to get me diving, the DM had signed me up for the discover scuba into dive to assess my skills
,f'ing fabulous. Anyway so i kitted up very reluctantly and could feel the dread starting to burn in my stomach as we set off,
this was of course, all davids fault.
But then something weird happened, once we'd gotten though the elementary skills and went for a dive around the reef....i
actually started to ENJOY myself??? it was amazing seeing all the awesome bright fish (and flipping scary seeing the massive
mauri ras named priscilla who was getting far too close to me for my liking!) i also saw my first sea turtle!! Wow, i came
up from that dive with a totally different opinion about scuba diving, it was actually really awesome...(just dont do it in durban:)

When we got back to the boat dave was looking very anxious as im sure he was waiting for the wroth of lucy to unfold on him,
but when he saw my big smile he was relieved and really happy (whether it was because i now enjoyed diving or just because he
wasnt going to get a tantrum form me i cant be sure:)

In the evenings the crew put together a slide show with photos they had taken of everyone from the day, not much went on as
we were all strangers so mostly an early night, except for dave of course who sat up drinking all the beer and talking to
maart'in from luundun ie. eastender boy.

Next day we had an early start and were dropped off on Whitehaven Beach for the day, really stunning inlet into the islands
with shallow waters where we swam and chased stingrays and reef sharks! they come up really close to you and then quickly
swim away, it was awesome...although a little terrifying as well.
That afternoon back on the boat is was d-day, Timmy the DM was going to do my final dive for my padi, bugger.
Kitted up again i had to go through all my checks (which i'd forgotten, nice start) and then we went down to the bottom of
the sea to do the million skills i had left. Luckily it all went really quickly and i didnt freak out like i thought i would,
even with my mask off and the reg out my mouth!! (how i dont know?! but i did it, whew!) When we got out and i was feeling
very triumphant indeed Timmy asked if i was cold? weird, it was like 30 degrees of course i wasnt cold? To which he replied,
oh cause you were shaking the whole time we were down there....ooops, that must have been the nerves, anyway, its over and done with

On our last day we just had a lazy start and cruised along the islands back to the mainland, where dave and i were given matching
dive t-shirts!! ha ha ha ha! i cant believe im now one of those people who wears their dive shirts. what dorks indeed.
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Emma on

Luc - you guys look like you are havin the most unbelievable time. Such beautiful places you're getting to see. So stoked for you! Enjoy, love the news, love em

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