Headed To Cairns

Trip Start Jan 23, 2006
Trip End Apr 26, 2006

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Thursday, March 16, 2006

Hello All,
We have survived the 3 days at sea, and managed to not fall off the boat or get stung by a jellyfish! We did hire (rent) some stinger suits for the trip (also required by the Southern Cross sailing company) and that helped in avoiding a box jellyfish sting or an Irukanja (spelling?) sting. Although we did not have any gloves, hoods, or socks or flippers so I was still pretty freaked about swimming around. A captain had been stung a week earlier by an Irukanja Jellyfish and had to be airlifted to the hospital.....crazy! We started out the first day with high winds and rain falling on us and on the horizon, but mother nature finally cooperated and the skys opened up to a gloriously sunny day. A little too sunny, I was so happy to see the sun I did not put on sun screen and got a wee bit burned...but it looks tan now :) We did some snorkeling right off the boat along the lower part of the Great Barrier Reef in the Whitsunday Islands and it was Beautiful. We cruised to a long sand straight where a group of Ozzies had decided to play naked sand cricket, when they spotted us they all put their shorts back on...thank you! We sailed into the sunset and ate a yummy dinner under a full moon on the deck of the sailboat. That first nights sleep on the boat was pretty strange and the constant motion and sounds made for a rocky nights sleep, but we managed to catch some shut eye before the boat roared into motion at 7am (bright and early). We set sail for the Largest Island in the Whitsunday Island groups, but the huge swells turned us back and we veered towards another course. We sailed for about 5 hours around the other side of the swells and finally landed on Whithaven Beach. Sea turtles came swimming up all around us, and we spent the later half of the day on the Silica White Sand Beaches. We had another bright almost full moon and the white sand beaches glowed under the moon light. We ate another yummy dinner, I believe we had steak and mashed potatoes, and enjoyed the breeze. The waves were much bigger that night, but we managed to fall asleep and again woke up bright an early the next morning. This was our last day at sea and again it was sunny and warm.
We spent the morning snorkeling and relaxing on the bow. The winds were whipping around and when we tried to put the sail up to head back into shore the main sail ripped in 3 spots! The gusts were so strong, and our captain Pete was not so happy, as we had already broken a Head Sail earlier in the sail. I guess the Southern Cross Sailing Company does not like to break 10,000 worth of sails in one trip! But we finally landed on shore and wobbled off the boat. We felt like we were still at sea for a few hours afterward and our little cabin at the holiday park felt like it was swaying back and forth like the boat. We drove out of town and up to Townsville the next day, and here we are. We are trying to do a dive here or at Cairns but it all depends on the winds. We went to another Billabong Animal park today and got to hold a Koala, a Python, a Crocidile, and a Cockatoo. We also saw a bunch of Salt Water Crocs being feed...they are huge! We are headed back to hold a Wombat in a few minutes, and we will upload those later. Also Happy Birthday to Graham Doran on March 28th! Thanks for tunning in...........
Lot Of Love,
Molly and Conor

So just an addition to the last entry.....

The Wombat was awesome! I am getting a wombat and a koala for a pet! We are headed out to go diving tomorrow in Cairns on the Great Barrier Reef, and then flying out to Brisbane and then Thailand on Monday morning. I wanted to give a few shout outs from down under....Happy Happy Birthday to Todd Shinn who celebrates on Saint Particks day! Todd you must have one for us, and we will have to owe you a Scorpion Bowl when we get back :) Conor and I both wish we could celebrate with you! Also hello to my family, who is all getting together this weekend! We miss you and wish we could be there to hang out too! Give Coop a million kisses for me! Katie make sure Todd behaves himself....in the words of Kathleen McDonald "Maintain Some Dignity!" otherwise know as "MSD" We will post more pics soon, I am at an Internet kiosk right now and it is more like a coke machine than a computer!
Lots Of Love,
Molly and Conor
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