Wet and Windy in the Whitsundays - Day 3

Trip Start Aug 04, 2011
Trip End Jan 04, 2012

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On the Greyhound

Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Prima headed north from her berthing point just after 8am while we tucked into our breakfast. We turned northeast back towards Airlie and for 2 hours everyone sat along the Port side as Prima's sail pulled us over endless waves. We all sat in a line quietly watching wave after wave splash over us while Prima sat at near 45 degrees for the duration. Steve obviously found it amusing every now and again as a huge swell caught as all drenched, and except for the cold which was sadly still with us it was an uneventful but pleasant trip back to town. The quiet time allowed a bit of contemplation and reflection on the 2 night trip and allowed me to think quite fondly of my fellow passengers.

Glen who at first had come across as a little annoying cracking jokes and interrupting every conversation with quips had a nice positivity, while Suzie clearly besotted by her 'outback’ man was yet another lovely German we had met on this part of the trip. Luke and Fiona were great fun and spoke enthusiastically of Australia, and some of the places we are yet to visit – but yet reminded us that a lot of people here have ventured no further than the continental coast of this vast country compared to ourselves and others who seem to have a breadth of experience over a short amount of time.

The three Germans were a lovely bunch who Kate and I enjoyed chatting to. Julia was extremely friendly always asking questions and at least feigning interest even if she didn’t really care, Anna (seeming younger even if she wasn’t!) was very playful and keen to travel the world and see everything she could while Morine’s facial expressions were brilliant at telling the story of how she felt , even if she couldn’t always express it in words.

When Steve and Emma had done the final ‘thanks for joining us’ speech we disembarked and headed along the boardwalk back to the marina. Steve and Emma were wonderful and good luck to the both of them. I enjoyed a brief chat on the way back with Steve about places to go in New Zealand and I intend to visit one of the places he recommended. He is extremely knowledgeable on sea matters I expect worldwide but definitely in the Whitsundays.
The parting words "If you enjoyed your time with us then you are our best advertisement, tell everyone you meet - If you didn't, keep your mouth shut" left us smiling till will stepped off.

We shook Glen and Suzie’s hands, missed Luke and Fiona and were invited by the Germans to catch a lift in the camper which we accepted. Quickly back in Airlie we headed to the lagoon to waste some time – nearly 9 hours until our Greyhound bus to Hervey Bay. The girls passed us by after having a quick wash at the lagoon changing rooms and we exchanged pleasantries – hopefully we’ll be able to keep in touch as they head northwards.

I instantly fell a little sad after the girls disappeared and told Kate later exactly why. It’s a feeling I used to get going to youth camp on a yearly basis but living in a different town to everyone else. You spend the week in total social exposure being able to talk to anyone you want and having loads of contact and then just as quickly as you found it, you are left alone from it. This felt a little the same. Kate and I have been travelling together and chatting together for just over 2 months with our company being the be all and end all. For a couple of days we haven’t been in each other’s pockets and we’ve mingled with others and then just as quickly we are sitting alone on a bench on Airlie Beach, with no-one around because the weather is miserable. We bickered a little throughout the afternoon both a bit cranky and clearly on the downside of the high of the trip. It was a wonderful trip, miserable weather or not – the people made it so.

We got some drying done at a local Laundromat, had some lunch, I went for a swim in the empty lagoon being patrolled by two lifeguards and we did some reading but generally the afternoon ticked away very slowly.

On getting on the Greyhound I became mildly irritated by an English girl that didn’t seem to shut up, a man travelling with a guitar (why the hell do you need a guitar when you travel?) and a couple that clearly did not know the rules of Greyhound.

The first rule of Greyhound is: You do not talk about Greyhound. The second rule of Greyhound is: you DO NOT talk about Greyhound! Third rule of Greyhound: someone yells "stop!", goes limp, taps out, the journey is over. Fourth rule: only 54 guys or girls to a coach. Fifth rule: one coach at a time, guya and girls. Sixth rule: No shirts, no shoes. Seventh rule: journeys will go on as long as they have to. And the eighth and final rule: if this is your first time at Greyhound, you have to ride.

Well ok, not those rules. They are just the  rules of ‘Fight Club’ with Greyhound put in, but anyway. Essentially they put their own bags beneath the bus (Error 1) and then got on the bus before showing their tickets to the driver (Error 2). It’s just a shame Gordon wasn’t driving or he would have torn them a new one. They got away scot free.

Sleeping on a Greyhound (The bus and not the dog) is a difficult thing and I suffered greatly. Kate on the other hand seemed to get more sleep than she would in a 5* hotel. We stopped a couple of times during the night and grabbed munchies (horrendously expensive) at one of them. Yet again the Greyhound film was a no-go – it started, crackled a little through the speakers and then was turned off. 5* coach travel my ass. At least the Chinese and Vietnamese transport doesn’t give the impression it’s going to be good.
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