FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 13th Port – Darwin, Australia – Day 31

March 2, 2016 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 13th Port – Darwin, Australia – Day 31 

Thursday, February 25th 

  • Just a 10-minute taxi ride from city center The Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory features an extensive display of Aboriginal art. (And about the only thing that sounded interesting to do in Darwin.)

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  • Also on exhibit is Sweetheart. And doesn’t she look sweet? She is a saltwater crocodile, not to be confused with a fresh water crocodile. Oh, and yes, there is a big difference! And it’s all in the size and the snout. At over 15 feet long she was responsible for a series of attacks on boats in Australia between 1974 and 1979. Sweetheart attacked outboard motors, dinghies, and fishing boats. In July 1979, she was finally caught alive by a team from the Territory Parks and Wildlife Commission, but drowned while being transported when she became tangled with a log.

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  • One of a handful of buildings that was not destroyed by Cyclone Tracy, Brown’s Mart was built in the 1880’s as a mining exchange.

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FUN-fact – Crocodile Dundee was based on life in the Top End – the northernmost region of Australia, isolated geographically and physically from the rest of the Northern Territory, and the world.

Not so FF – Cyclone Tracy hit Darwin on Christmas Day, 1974 and obliterated the city.

  • Tonight’s the night we set our clocks back the other 30 minutes.

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FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 12th Port – Thursday Island, Australia – Day 29

February 27, 2016 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 12th Port – Thursday Island, Australia – Day 29 

Tuesday, February 23rd 

  • If it’s Tuesday…how could we be at Thursday Island?
  • We couldn’t! Way too rough and choppy seas rendered the tenders unboardable. So after an hour of attempting they gave up and the days excursions were cancelled. (Rumor had it there wasn’t much to see anyway)
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Disclaimer: This is Not Thursday Island. But Hey They All Look Alike!

  • Oh well, Champagne for lunch it is!

FUN-cocktail – Hemingway Daiquiri – Havana Club Especial Rum, Maraschino Liqueur, fresh ruby red grapefruit, hand-extracted lime juice, & simple syrup.

  • OMG! After four weeks on board we have been clearly over-served and over-fed!
  • Tonight we were told to set our clocks back 30 minutes. Like what’s the point?

FUN-fact – Thursday Island is part of a chain of more than 100 islands stretching like stepping stones to Papua New Guinea.

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FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 11th Port – Hamilton Island, Australia – Day 27

February 26, 2016 by · 2 Comments 

Sunday, February 21st 

  • Since La Cimbali “the God of the perfect cup” doesn’t get woken up until 9 am, we sleep in every morning until 8:40. Today was the first day we’ve had to wake up. 7:00 am. Yikes! Felt like the middle of the night! Turns out room service Americano coffee is actually not bad.

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  • The main sail was raised by hand even though the mast on our 66’ catamaran was 100 feet high. Not a problem when you have a staff of strappy young sailors!

My fantasy realized…I finally got to be “rail candy”

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…OK in mi sueños…maybe in another life!

  • What I love most about sailing is the quiet. As you gently glide through the water the only sound you hear is the wind rustling through the sails. And with more wind the more it snaps as the sail slackens and fills again.

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  • The major mode of transportation at this sweet little vacation village is by golf cart.
  • While we were technically in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, if you wanted to actually see and snorkel the GB Reef you had to leave at 5:45 am! That clearly wasn’t going to happen! We did that ten years ago so we opted for Sailing the Whitsunday Passage.

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FUN-fact – There are 74 islands in the Whitsunday’s chain and is part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 10th Port – Brisbane, Australia – Day 25

February 23, 2016 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 10th Port – Brisbane, Australia – Day 25 

Friday, February 19th 

(Sung to The Sound of Music)

  • “The trees are alive…with the sound of

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…squeaky squawky lorikeets”

…and they were flitting from tree to tree in the Botanical Gardens!

  • One of many lovely parks in the city, and the largest, is filled with a plethora of lush tropical plants and trees many with an abundance of blooms in lavender, rose, fuchsia, and blood red.

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  • Coming in as the third largest city, Brisbane has the same cosmopolitan feel of Sydney, just on a smaller scale. Instead of a waterfront it has a riverfront that boasts Australia’s only inner city beach. And adjacent to it is The Queensland Cultural Center, a huge performing arts complex that includes the Art Gallery, Concert Hall, Lyric Theatre, and Queensland Museum. And like Sydney, the pedestrian only Queens Street Mall in the city center, encompassed several blocks and was electric at lunch time with all the hustle and bustle.

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Wait a minute…

Where am I?…

What day is this?….

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  • Imagine Marvin’s horror after being found on a downtown bench after a hard night of binge drinking in Brisbane!

FUN-cocktail – Naked Lemon – Malibu rum, Bacardi rum and Lemoncello with a splash of OJ.

Not so FUN-fact – Cyclone Winston turned into a Category 5 storm and hit Fiji today. But good for us since we were there two weeks ago.

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Brisasia Festival

FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 9th Port – Sydney, Australia – Day 23

February 22, 2016 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore – 9th Port – Sydney, Australia – Day 23 

Wednesday, February 17th

  • What Bond, James Bond is to England…

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…Bondi, Bondi Beach is to Australia.

  • This legendary beach (one of the most visited tourist’s sites in Australia) and the surrounding neighborhood are just a mere four miles to the east of 83 Sydney, Australia 2016downtown. Its crescent moon shaped bay and expansive white sand beach attracts surfers and sunbathers alike. What struck me was how the vivid deep emerald green ocean faded to a sea foam green as the waves broke on shore.

And what bathing suits are to beaches…

…Speedos are to Sydney…as they were born in Bondi in 1928. Who knew?

  • Strolling along the waterfront and through the Rock’s district, boarding the Sydney Explorer double-decker bus, seeing new parts of the city and reminiscing our last visit, with hops off at Rose Bay and Double Bay rounded out our day.
  • No question about it, Sydney is a world-class city with great energy. And reminds me of San Diego… only on steroids…. with its bunches of bays!
  • Ahh…Sydney…pretty much like how we feel about San Diego…picture perfect weather in the low 70’s, with some light cloud cover, made for an ideal day…and one you don’t want to end!

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FUN-fact – The Rocks, named for its rocky shoreline, is the site of the oldest settlement in Australia; a rough-and-tumble place, as it was home to the first convict tent camps in 1788.

More FF – We have sailed a total of 7092 nautical miles or 8156 land miles since we left San Francisco.

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The Rock’s

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