We take the overnight bus from Cairns to Airlie Beach - about 11 hours, we both sleep really. well.We book into a shit hole called Magnums, and spend our night there before our sailing adventure, although for me, I know exactly what is coming as 2 years ago I sailed on this exact same boat around the Whitsunday islands! - it just so happened to be the best priced one again now, I wonder if the same crew are on board?!
We wonder down to the harbor with our little soft bags (mine filled right up) and a goon bag ready for the party nights - we sit and wait as others congregate around, me and Jane check out who is on our boat, 17 all together quite a nice number. We get on our boat, and de ja vu sets in for me, its like it was last week me, Ali and Simon were sitting on the boat deck ready to have fun. I discover none of the original crew were on board this time
. We set off with the skipper giving us a light hearted safety briefing - and then we get chatting to our fellow passengers, it soon becomes evident of a divide in the group, our group claims the starbird side of the ship, while the other group claims the port side, rarely did we cross to greet each other! our little team had about 8 people, and we had the best laugh together. We went snorkeling that afternoon and saw lots of fish and some nice coral (best being up on barrier reef) I managed to touch one of the bigger fish who was very social and pretty cool! Our little team soon start to drink when we finish snorkeling at about 17.00 - it was to be a messy night! Jane wasn't feeling the goon, so by the end I had managed about half the bag by myself! around 2 liters of wine! I introduced the team to a card game called "fuck u" a drinking game! and it turns out Tom, was the one this kept happening to, and soon, it was just a random thing to say to him "Fuck u Tom" - Tom was German, so I let him in on a little fact I found out - 80% of Croc attacks happen to Germans! - they is even a warning in German on the beware of the croc signs! The night carries on with mostly our group being the drunken loud mouths! I then observe most of as are 25 years + and the other group were pretty young, maybe 19 or 20 - they all went to bed and we stayed up partying - I thought it was supposed to be the other way around!!
The next day sees an early start with the boat starting up - and a hangover not a good combination as the boat sways heavily! - a few people this day were sea sick, Jane included - I told her she should have calmed down last night and not to have drunk all that goon!!! We set off to Whitehaven beach - my paradise! The sun is shining, and I cant wait to see it again.
The beach is still beautiful with its pure white sand and blue sky, me and Jane pose for a few photos and we get a big group photo with us all shouting "fuck u Tom" rather then the more traditional cheese, we then get down to the beach and have a chill out, the boys get into their stinger suits and play ball in the water, and us girlie's explore the beach
. We stumble across a few thousand soldier crabs going somewhere! it looked bizarre seeing them all marching across the beach, as we get closer to them they would speed up, or bury themselves in the sand, they looked weird with spots over them, and they had 8 legs. We spend 2 hours on the beach then it was time to go back to our boat for more snorkeling.
We get to a nice reef, me and Jane had been saying all along that we wanted to see a turtle and it was the last thing we had to see - well, luck was on our side, we did see a massive one! At first he was hiding near some coral, then he decided to set off for a swim, so we swam with him, side by side with him, it was really cool, I got some great pics, and he looked so chilled just swimming around. Then I felt something I really didn't want to - I had a sharp pain on my left wrist and up my arm, I knew exactly what it was, a bloody jelly fish had stung me. I was in a stinger suit, but my hands were not covered by this. I was a bit panicked, as the only stingers you hear about are the deadly ones! so naturally I was a bit worried! I swam back to the little dingy boat that was in the water with us, holding my arm out of the water, not sure what to do with it! When I got to the boat the stinger was still wrapped around my arm, we got him off and I climbed into the boat. Loz one of the boat hands then put my mind a rest saying that its the pain that come out 20 minutes after the sting are the bad ones
! I get some vinegar on my wrist back on the boat, the stinger didn't get my upper arm because of the suit, but he defiantly tried! The sting just looked like nettle rash around my wrist, it was sore for a little bit, but it then went away. I have survived a marine jellyfish sting! That night the party starts again, but I decide not to drink! still being a bit hungover - never the less, the laughs kept coming and we were making some really good friends. The last day started with a very early 7.00 snorkel - I was so tired, the boat gets really hot at night, and while I tried sleeping outside, it was too uncomfortable out there! I reluctantly get in the water! and still a bit paranoid about my earlier sting, I try to cover all open areas of my body with my hands! I did see a really cool little fish though who attached himself to me thinking I was another fish - he followed me everywhere!! he was either right by my mask or sitting on my arm! he even swam the 200m with me back to the boat! he was leading the way! We then start our journey back to Hervey bay and get ready for a boat reunion that evening with a few free beer jugs! We decide to share a room with some of the guys from our boat at beaches, we have another good night out with the free beer and all exchanging facebook addresses to keep in contact, some of them are heading the same way, so likely hood is a meeting up somewhere.
Me and Jane wait for the overnight bus to take us to Hervey bay, for another exciting adventure on fraser island!