Finding Nemo

Trip Start Jul 27, 2004
Trip End Dec 21, 2004

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Flag of Australia  ,
Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Well our search for Nemo took us far and wide and we ended up in Cairns to try and catch a glimpse of the famous fishie.

Cairns is quite cool, its main aim is to get people out on the reef scuba diving or snorkelling and therefore every other shop is a diving shop or a travel agent tour booking place. This intermingled with some quite trendy restaurants and bars means that it has quite an interesting sea front. The only thing it lacks is a beach!! But the friendly Cairns people have rectified that by building a fake one next to the sea, complete with sand, swimming pool in the shape of waves and lifeguards. All of this with piped music and not a relaxing wave sound either proper music like Robbie and stuff (no Depeche Mode!!!)

As we are still in Julie (not long to go) we had to stay in a campsite that was miles away from everywhere and that was the closest Cairns had to offer. It was, how can i describe it, mmmmmmm...... horrible is probably the best word with yucky toilet and showers, no distinctive sites, rough people and dead animals. We had come to Cairns to search for Nemo but Kerry wouldn't stay in such poverty so we booked a dive trip that would leave from Port Douglas (a town a few km up the coast) and upped and left still on his trail but missing Cairns out.

Port Douglas was much nicer, nice central campsite, more up market town with designer boutiques and fancy restaurants. We are in the poshest internet cafe i have ever seen.

So to the trip, we set off nice and early and boarded our catamaran for the hour journey to the Barrier Reef. Now we thought that The Yacht in the Whitsundays had been rough but it was a rubber dinghy on a pond of a ride compared to this. Rough does not explain it, bloody rough does not come close, try we had taken double the dose of sea sickness tablets and still felt sick! try you couldn't stand up let alone walk, and try the horizon vanishing behind both sides of the window on each rock with so much water coming on board that we all had to sit inside and still couldn't see anything out of the wave splattered windows. What fun!!!

Once we got out onto the reef though it was a bit more sheltered and calm, so we donned our wetties, put on our masks and tanks, walked to the edge of the boat (Kerry needing help to carry her tank) and plopped in. We weren't exactly graceful but we were in the water and breathing through the regulator. That was until we had to take them out underwater, i mean how stupid is that taking the one thing that is keeping you alive away, Aaaaaarrrgh, It was important apparently to show that we knew what to do if the regulator fell out. (like that would happen as we were biting on it so hard we both had jaw ache). We saw some amazing fish: Parrot fish, Butterfly fish, Unicorn fish and a massive one that was called Luigi. We also saw some beautiful coral reef of various colours and stroked and held a slimy sea cucumber. It was so weird being part of such a different environment it was like being on the little mermaid. All together we went scuba diving twice and also went snorkelling and had a wicked day.

And i here you cry, did we find nemo???

The photo's speak for themselves.
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