Sunday, October 31, 2010

Port Douglas-Day 11

My kind of R&R

Last full day in paradise, so we headed out to 4 mile beach one last time!

This video was huge with my big camera, 
and I'm interested to see what the quality will be like after converting it!

The humidity made my stick-straight hair have a beach wave!

I wish my backyard was filled with all this!

After goofing around town, we had a double date at Mark and Suze's hotel for an authentic Aussie lunch and hangin' out by the pool before heading home to the States!

"Sausage Sizzle"
 For a couple bucks, you get a slice of white bread (I chose wheat), a sausage, sauteed onions, and bbq sauce (or ketchup).  Almost always served at a little league game, parking lot of DIY stores, ballpark, etc ... you name it!  There's nothing sophisticated about it, but we wanted to do it right the way the locals do it! 

Here's the mayhem in making it happen :)
**Aussies call ketchup "tomato"

I just learned how to use video on my camera, so it threw them off!

I am a big fan of the 10sec timer - Genius invention!

We heard a helicopter touch down what seemed REALLY close, so I went and investigated.  This photo was taken without a zoom ... and still to this day I wonder who landed on the hotel property!

We said out goodbyes, got email addresses, and have planned to meet our Aussie friends in Asia one of these days.  It was a true delight meeting such great people who made our trip so memorable.  As you can tell from the videos, our time together was filled with lots of joy and laughter.  We wish them a happy future together with many blessings!!!

Next post, our 30hr trip home!
To be continued ....

Australian Toilet

This entire post is going to me dedicated to the Australian toilet.  You might ask why, right?!  Well, it created a lot of discussion between Gabe and me, as well as our Aussie friends.

Does anyone notice anything different???  
10 points to the person with the correct answer!

**Rinnie you are disqualified since you're from Australia!
(You're going to get a kick out of this though!!!)

Port Douglas-Day 10

Without going into a lot of detail, I had to psychologically pump myself up for today.  You see, I have a fear of everything in the water, including fish.  Gabe on the other hand has a fear of deep open bodies of water.  That creates for two hot messes in the DEEP BLUE SEA!!!!

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the seven Natural Wonders of the World -- I would be hating myself forever if I passed on this opportunity and/or was a wuss to not snorkel while I was there.  We debated our options as there were many different companies, size of boats, locations, etc, and I couldn't be more pleased with our experience in the sea.

The Quicksilver Ships
The SilverSonic catamaran was ours in the middle - We picked the ship that stopped at three sites and gave us five hours at the reef snorkeling.

Travelling at 32 knots, Gabe was sick as a dog.  Seriously, it broke my heart seeing how nauseous he was.  I kept trying to check on him, but he could barely even talk ... so he nodded instead!! 

It was actually quite stressful because when we checked in, we noticed our friends weren't on the list for the snorkel trip as their reservation got set for another day, and they were waiting at their hotel for the shuttle to pick them up.  Thankfully, Gabe's persistence to get in touch with them, hold the boat, and get them to the pier occurred right in the nick of time.  This trip wouldn't have been the same without our Aussie buds since we planned to do it together!

The sites were just stunning and the guides were great about telling us the most ideal places to snorkel.

Loving the water

They had just called us all in, but I stayed out to get one cool photo to document me and a WHOLE LOT of sea!  

**There were times when one of us would get pushed away by the current and with so many people around it was easy to get lost, so we depended on swimsuits and the colored fins to locate the other! 

Gabe stayed up top for one dive as he wasn't feeling too hot :(

I lured him back in for the third dive!

I have to admit that I am SO VERY PROUD of Gabe and myself for conquering our fears together.  It is one thing to see this stuff on TV, but to be in the water where anything is possible is a completely different story.  Secondly, I am thankful for not having a weak stomach as people were puking everywhere.  Seriously, it was gross.  I don't understand how the staff could handle that each and every day as one lady threw up all over the back of one of the guides.  We learned the best place to be was on the back of the ship with a breeze and not in enclosed quarters!

Excited to land as we all were quite anxious after a long day at sea!

I cannot wait to develop my underwater camera as we took so many pictures!!  I am praying that at least a few turn out :)

Neither one of us ate much on the ship as I am not one for buffets, and Gabe assumed food with a 2hr trip back to shore was a no-go!  

So, we showered up nicely and grabbed dinner at 
Bistro 3 - Modern Australian Italian
photo found here

*My mom commented on all the food pictures, 
and I want to remember what we ate years from now!

Linguini pasta with pomodoro sauce, tiger prawns, picked spanner crab, kalamata olives, fresh herbs and shaved parmesan 

Local wild Barramundi fillet with crushed kipfler potatoes and roast garlic, sautéed green vegetables, shellfish bisque velouté

Chocolate banana amoothie, Classic crème brulée, and Chocolate and hazelnut brownie

Only Day 11 and 12 left!
To be continued ....

Port Douglas-Day 9

I had heard from one of my doctors that Australia adolescents have by far and away the highest incident of malignant melanoma in the world.  That was shocking to me, but we learned quickly why as the sun is deceiving here and way stronger than we imagined.

4-Mile Beach starts in downtown Port Douglas and goes on for miles - four to be exact :)  From 6am to about 9am, this place is PACKED!  Then once the sun comes out, everyone disperses.

This beach has a stinger net during the stinger season, 
and it's recommended to only swim within the protective barriers.  

Hard sand, which made walking extremely easy with sandals.

The small crabs kept us entertained as they were EVERYWHERE!

We walked super far so we had a private beach to ourselves!


After roasting for a couple hours, we headed in to meet 
Suze and Mark for round 2 at Rattle Hum!

And we found our Melbourne friends again as it's a very small town!!

They taught us all about Vegemite (food paste made from yeast extract)! 
Gabe is smiling here, note it's BEFORE he tried it.

Then our evening got exciting by going to the Cane Toad Races!
Cute little guys before the race

The festivities begin by doing everything in your power to get the toad to jump off the table without your hands.  It required a lot of skill and/or obnoxious noises.

I was chosen to be the score keeper

It was a Port Douglas crowd pleaser!

After the show was over, majority of the restaurants were closed, and were thrilled to find Porto's Pizza still serving food as we hadn't eaten!

He was trying to describe what capsicum was and finally had to show me! 
Ah-ha!   *We call that red/green peppers!

Check out these pizzas - 
We let the Aussies order and said we were along for the ride!

Half Aussie (ham, bacon, onion, and egg) and Half Cassius Clay

"The Aussie" pizza was a little too strange for us, but BBQ sauce with pesto, capers, and pepperoni on a pizza was AMAZING!!  I went to bed fat and happy after this meal and a long day in the sun!

Our Great Barrier Reef trip is next!
To be continued ....

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