Our Adventures Beyond the Outback

Group photo at Uluru
Carrie, Julius, Michele and Glenn - the four intreped travelers at Uluru.

Page 11:
Day of Rest
Played in the ocean with Julius, laughing as the boisterous waves knocked me one way then another. Joined Carrie for sunbathing after a run along the beach.
Apparently, we weren't the only ones relaxing on the beach.

In the afternoon, we walked along the Esplanade along the bay in Cairns. So many people enjoying the park, exercising singly and in large groups led by a leader, volleyball games in the sand, grills surrounded by families, trees showing off black branches with red, blue and green lights glowing from underneath.
Carrie     Sidewalk

Chose a gyro place among the many restaurant offerings for dinner on the busy, tourist strip.

Next Day: The Geat Barrier Reef
Boat We woke early to meet our sailboat taking us to the Great Barrier Reef. Captain Doug and his crew were warm and friendly as we sailed along with twenty others to the reef 1 hours away.  Instead of the studded coral wall I was expecting, our first stop took us to a shallow area, where we could see the white sands four feet below with darker areas clumped here and there. Those dark clumps turned out to be part of the 1,200 kilomenter Great Barrier Reef.

I adjusted to snorkel and mask after a few panicky moments, but never made the most of my fins. Even though the water was perfectly clear, I could not see the life below until I applied the flat surface of the goggles to the wavy waters. Then a whole new world came into crystal clear view.  Most of the corals in this area were pretty subdued in color—browns, tans, and soft greens—but the fish feeding there were spectacular. At one point, when swimming amongst a pod of zebra fish, I had the distinct feeling of being in an aquarium. The bright indigo pinkie length buggers delighted me. I didn’t learn the names of any fish other than the stingray Julius pointed out to me.

After a delicious lunch of fried chicken and salads, we went to a deeper spot for snorkeling. I had had my snorkeling experience for the day and was content to stay aboard, while Julius was the first in and last out. Mostly, I was in awe to be sharing this experience of the Great Barrier Reef with Glenn, Julius and Carrie.

The crew served delicious snacks all day, but as we neared the pier on our return, Captain Doug cut the motor and served us wine and cheese. Then this old, pony-tailed man began weaving stories about the history of our boat, the Falla—which had been burned once and sunk twice—and its early use in the heyday of the mother-of-pearl industry, back before buttons were made of plastic.  Captain Doug related how he rebuilt the boat and now tries to make a living giving boat tours.

After hot showers back at our 
Airbnb pod, we returned to Cairns for deep bowls of Pho, mine filled with seafood, the others with beef.

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Last Updated November 11, 2017
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Website contents 2017 by Glenn Simonelli & Michele Stone.

Photographs by Julius Simonelli, Carrie Wallace, Glenn Simonelli & Michele Stone