kmusser: (valar morghulis)
Disasters are all the more personal when it's somewhere you've been - I'm pretty sure we've been to the corner pictured here. Marysville was a very cute, hippyish town when we visited - now not so much. I tried to see if there was any news of nice little Pagan mart there but haven't found anything, pinged the one person listed on Witchvox. Meanwhile [ profile] drjon posted more useful links for news and donations and the relevant Red Cross page is here. I hope the people we met down there are ok.
kmusser: (Lego)
Sadly we must fly home. Flight itself is uneventful but LAX is evil. Almost missed our connection to DC due to overloaded INS/Customs and the general dysfunction of LAX. Any iota of desire to visit LA on purpose is now gone and I think I'll try to avoid the airport if it can be helped. We did finally make it home. Now sleep and work tomorrow.
kmusser: (Lego)
Did a bit of driving about the Dandenongs. Stopped at William Ricketts Sanctuary which is a bunch of cool, very Pagan-y sculptures designed to look like they grew out of the rocks and trees. Did a bit of souvenir shopping in the little touristy towns.

Afterwards our hosts made us a wonderful dinner - they were great to stay with. Will take the opportunity to plug which is how I found them.

In the evening we met up with [ profile] kineticfactory and friends at a pub and geeked out.
kmusser: (Lego)
Slept in a bit then headed out to wineries. Ended up only hitting two - but they both had lots of good stuff. Afterwords went into Melbourne and wandered around a bit downtown and along the riverfront. In the evening [ profile] zammis and I met up with [ profile] kineticfactory and [ profile] gths in a pub to catch some music. The group was called Bam Bam and was quite good. Very cool to finally meet folks I've known online for years.
kmusser: (Lego)
Another day driving. Got stuck behind an accident on the way into Melbourne. We did finally make it to our hosts house in the eastern burbs of Melbourne near the Dandenongs. Our hosts are very nice and give us wine and suggestions of stuff to see. Then we head out to catch a "footy" (aka Australian Rules Football game). Interesting to watch, definitely very different - huge crowds, with very colorful vocabularies :-)

Tomorrow wineries and hopefully catching up with some of our friends here.
kmusser: (Lego)
Today we cruised the Great Ocean Road. Beautiful scenery. Stopped briefly to see a waterfall near Apollo Bay. After that it began raining and and we were driving through lots of fog. Fortunately that cleared up as we reached the 12 apostles. These are a series of huge limestone formations in the ocean. We got some stunning views with the storm clouds overhead, and then with the sun coming out over them - pictures will be posted when we get home. We spent the night in Port Campbell. Went back out to the 12 apostles to watch the sunset. Also looked for penguins which supposedly come ashore, but didn't see any. Did however see an echidna, which was very cool.
kmusser: (Lego)
is spent travelling. We say our farewells to Reecy and Queensland and fly to Melbourne. From Melbourne we head southwest for the Great Ocean Road and spend the night in Angelsea where I right these words to you. In the morning we shall continue west along the road.
kmusser: (Lego)
More Magnetic Island - we take a guided tour to see the rest of the island. Very beautiful. Could easily spend quite some time here. Have brunch on a remote beach. Then back to Townsville where Sam gets a massage as a birthday treat. In the evening we go bar hopping to sample the fabulous night life of Townsville. Get to hear Reecy sing. Go Reecy!

Sadly we're done with Queensland - will post more ruminations when I get home.
kmusser: (Lego)
Decided we'd spend the next two days on Magnetic Island. The Island is just off-shore of Townsville and looks like you'd expect a tropical island to look like. The seas are a bit choppier than usual. Got a little quesy on the ferry ride over, but was fine once we got there. Stayed at a very cosy B&B in Arcadia. The hosts are very nice and give us a little tour of the town. After settling in I spend a bit of time writing the previous updates.

Then we go for a little walk by the Ocean and stop and watch the rock wallabies. These have got to be the cutest critters ever. They like vegetables and there was a group of people feeding them. Babies with their heads poking out of their mother's pouches are especially adorable.

Have some yummy Thai food and then to sleep seranaded by the cries of the curlew.
kmusser: (Lego)
To all the interest in Powerpuff Girl sightings - you'll just have to wait till I get the photographs up :-)

Slept in a little.

Since we haven't had much luck seeing critters in the wild we headed to Billabong Sanctuary, a wildlife park where we knew they couldn't get away. I got a hold a wombat and a koala - both very cute critters. Also there were many wallabies, kangaroos, crocadiles, and many many birds. We fed the wallabies and kangaroos, but not the crocs :-)

Afterwards we participated in the fine Australian tradition of the Barbie (aka BBQ for you American types) and got to meet some of Reecy's Aussie friends. Also played the Australian edition of Trivial Pursuit in which Sam and I cleaned up.
kmusser: (Lego)
Slept in. Yay.

Decided to stay in Townsville today and did museums.

First was the ReefHQ - their aquarium to give us a little taste of the Great Barrier Reef - especially cool since it doesn't look like we'll have time to actually go out there this trip. Saw many fishes and other funny critters like giant clams. The cuttlefish looks particularly Cthulhu-like.

Second was the Museum of Northern Queensland - which is mostly devoted to the wreck of the H.M.S. Pandora. The Pandora was the ship sent after the Bounty after it mutineed. The Pandora was wrecked on the Great Barrier Reef and this museum houses many goodies recovered from the wreck.

Had dinner on the oceanfront, complete with tropical drinks. Then hit the beach for a brief swim.

Evening we drove to the top of Castle Hill, which is this mountain in the middle of Townsville, lovely views all around.

Picked up supplies for tomorrows BBQ and went to bed.

Out of time - more updates to follow when I get a chance.
kmusser: (Default)
We wake up to the Kookabura's practicing their music. Quite noisy critters. Head back south, stop again at the big tree to show it to Reecy. Stop briefly in Malanda, a dairy town where we have the "the Udder Experience."

After that we make several stops to see some spetacular waterfalls near Milaa Milaa. We lunch at the Mulliken Dairy, which has excellent cheeses - including a cheese called "Quark" which is especially yummy. I have some cheesecake, which I'm sure does not shock anyone :-)

Then it's back towards the coast through more rain. Our next tourist stop is Paronella Park - where the staff kindly comes to the car with umbrellas. The park is the ruins of a castle built by a crazy Spanish guy in the 1920's (they said I was daft to build a castle in the jungle, but I built it anyway) and runs as a sort of amusement park through the early 50's. The castle is great as it looks like it just grew out of the jungle. The park also includes extensive gardens surrounding the castle. Critter sightings here include many flying foxes (giant bats) and fish and turtles.

We stop for a bite to eat in Cardwell on the oceanfront and finally make it back to Townsville late this evening.
kmusser: (Lego)
We drive to Meereba, apparently Northern Queensland's coffee mecca. We visit an organic coffee plantation owned by Bruno - he sounds like a Bruno too. Bruno gives a tour of the plantation and roasting facilities. Zammis is in happy coffeeland and we procure some excellent coffee. We also make brief stops at another coffee shop and in Atherton for sandwiches before we return to Yungaburra. We have dinner at the local pub and hang out for a bit. Then make another attempt to find the elusive critters. No platypi, but we do see a possum near the giant tree and I see one of the infamous cane toads - know primarily for eating all the local tree frogs.
kmusser: (Lego)
Our hosts provide a fabulous breakfast featuring exotic fruits like dragonfruit, starfruit, and ramantans (sp?). I especially liked the dragonfruit, good and bloody.

Outside it is pouring rain, so we decide to skip the beach and head straight for the hills, aka the Atherton Tablelands. We know we're going in the right direction when we see the sign for the Misty Mountains.

We arrive at Yungaburra where we are staying at the Eden House. The accomodations are quite posh. The hot tub in the room and the complimentary port are nice touches.

During a brief break in the rain we make the first of many failed attempts to see platypi. We also go to see the Curtain Fig Tree, which is a massive tree - one of those "you could drive a car through it" trees. It would make a lovely Pagan place of worship. No critters sitings though.

We have a lovely dinner at a Swiss-Italian place and afterwords hang out at a pub where Reecy and I play pool with some of the locals. I also learn somewhat to my dismay that Aussies put Coke in their Black Russians, silly Aussies.
kmusser: (Default)
Sorry I haven't had a chance to update. Will post some more reports while we're hanging out here on Magnetic Island chilling in the sun.
kmusser: (Default)
Found ourselves in Townsville, hosted by the fabulous Reecy. Amazingly enough not too badly jet-lagged. The weather is awesome. Our first wildlife sighting is an ibis in Reecy's backyard :-) Slept in and did some errands and then headed north toward Innisfail. Stopped to see Joruma Falls, which are very pretty - watch out for giant poisonous spiders - also saw geckos and shiny butterflys. Stopped at a pub, have to keep up traditions :-) Stopped at Mango Frosty, how can you resist someplace called Mango Frosty? Zammis was quite happy with the discovery that they had dairy free ice cream. Also stopped at a winery, which was bad - there's a reason Queensland is not known for its wineries. After that it began raining (you'd think we were in a tropical climate or something), but stopped by the time we actually reached Innisfail. After updating you all we shall find food. Tomorrow - the beach!
kmusser: (Default)
What big airplanes you have. Pretty Moon. Found Reecy. *thud*
kmusser: (Lego)
We are off like a herd of turtles. Will hopefully post once I get there.
kmusser: (Lego)
To do today: Buy tickets to Australia.


kmusser: (Default)

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