Expert Surfers (not!)

Trip Start Jan 19, 2006
Trip End Jan 19, 2007

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Monday, April 24, 2006

Arrived in Brisbane a bit late, but fortunately our friend, dad (real name Andrew) had waited for us. Kindly came to pick us up in our hire car for our next adventure. Was great to see him although shame his wife Flossie (Deborah) is currently in the UK recovering from an op. They moved out here in Jan and have settled in very well to Southport just outside Surfers Paradise. Anyway Andrew met us with a beer (of course) and then drove us to the great apartment where it was great to feel like we were at home although we were gatecrashing theirs! So nice to feel relaxed and able to do some washing, get some home food (had cheese on toast for lunch - fab!!) and just chill in a clean place!! Andrew then drove us around the area to see the nearby spit and some of the fantastic houses and marinas before we spent too much money at the supermarket and liquor mart!
Back home we had a barbie and a few beers and had a good catch up (they did a round the world trip before they moved out here).

Sunday we pretended was Easter Sunday since we sort of missed Easter last week so we had Easter eggs and I was given some bunny ears to wear (like you do) and we then drove inland to Tamborine MOuntain. Beautiful countryside not dissimilar to home, very green and huge trees and rolling hills/mountains. We came across some guys about to jump off the mountain handgliding which was great to watch as they caught the thermals and went higher into the atmosphere. Had a quick picnic overlooking the view before we made our way to the Bearded Dragon Tavern in Tamborine itself which was a bit like a country pub/ranch. Was a great location and spent some time watching the crocodile/reptile show with an actual Bearded Dragon (type of reptile), pythons and a baby croc. And then it was the moment we had all been waiting for............
Cane Toad Racing! When Andrew mentioned this to us before we got here I thought he had gone mad but no it is a 'sport' out here to race cane toads! Basically it starts with this guy auctioning off each toad (8 in total) to the highest bidder which then becomes your toad and if it wins you win a percentage of the pot. We were about to bid for a toad with a max budget of $15 but the lowest any went for was 50! 1st prize was 200 though. Anyway the toads are then placed in the centre of a mat with a big circle drawn around it and the first to cross the line is a winner. It was great fun to watch and actually the smallest toad won and was over in a few seconds. Very amusing indeed.

After that back up to some fantastic views and a picnic lunch before we headed downhill for a drive up the coast and a quick walk/paddle in the sea and see the high rise sky-line of Surfers Paradise. Back home I started on cooking a roast for us which was pretty nice (even if I say so myself) and even cooked an apple crumble for the first time.
Went to bed with a very full stomach!

Today up early to go for our surf lesson. Yes the three of us were on the beach with our boards by 9am and raring to go (ish). Had a great 2 hour lesson which sounded pretty self explanatory on the beach but as soon as you tried in the water it was a different matter. The waves were so strong but we caught a few (with our bodies flat on the board) - great fun! And towards the end tried to stand, think Andrew and I managed to get on our knees but Dave stood up a couple of times which was pretty impressive for a novice. It was really tiring going back and forth particularly when your board decided to go the opposite way it should! I felt a bit like I had been through a washing machine at some points and have more ocean inside me than I should but it was great fun and thoroughly recommend it! We were shattered after this so had an icecream before we sorted out bits and bobs in Surfers/the apartment. Had a pizza for dinner and trying to make the most of internet access and washing machine, great hospitatliy before we go. Have had a great time here - shame Flossie not here - but has been fab and don't want to leave although are looking forward to going to Tassie tomorrow!!
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