Sunday 25 March 2012: Wet and Wild
We were going to have a lazy day in Airlie Beach to recover from yesterday's drive from Port Douglas. However, the morning dawned bright and sunny and we decided to head for the Whitsunday Islands with a tour group. We had heard people talk about these tropical islands as Heaven on Earth with the the whitest sand beaches in the World. Who could resist such an image?
As we left the marina in a large catamaran, the skies started to cloud over and the wind picked up. As Mrs B is not the best of sailors, we sat outside at the bow so she could watch the horizon and breath in the fresh air. However, as we reached the open seas the waves grew in size and the boat started to pitch and toss to the extent we were almost thrown from our seats. Great opportunity for a blip thought I, as the front of the gang-rail was at 30 degrees to the horizon! Camera out ready for the shot and whooosh, yes you have guessed, a large wave breaks over the front of the boat and soaks both of us and the camera! A quick retreat inside the cabin only to find the camera is not working properly. The high humidity, sea air and big wave seem to have got into its mechanisms and partially disabled it.
The highlight of the day was to be Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island, 7 km of pure white sand and the most photographed beach in Australia (according to the blurb!). When we arrived in early afternoon the skies were lead grey and the rain, although warm, was incessant. Our boat anchored offshore and passengers were taken to the beach on a rib tender. Everyone was wearing the now compulsory Lycra wet suit to protect against the Stinger jelly fish, although I have yet to speak to anyone who has ever seen one! After a wonderful swim in the rain and a jog along the beach (yes, it does beat Carradale beach - even in the warm rain!) we met up with Jimmy from Dundee and his German partner Maren, who live in Frankfurt (what's this thing with meeting up with fellow Scots while on holiday abroad?). In true fashion, the 30 odd passengers fror various parts of the World were all back on the boat, while the 3 Scots (+ 1 German) remained for a last swim in the rain before being summoned to board the rib and return to mother ship!
I struggled with the sodden camera to get many more blips, but did get this one of the rib skipper, trying to impress us by riding our bow waves, as we headed home. Hard to imagine the wee rib took 20 passengers a time ashore!
Back at the apartment, the compact was refusing to do as I requested. Drastic action was called for, but with 90 odd % humidity how do you thoroughly dry anything? In a moment of inspiration I put the oven on at a gentle heat and placed the open camera on a grill tray. After turning regularly for 15 minutes I removed it, replaced the battery and - hey presto - it worked perfectly! I suspect Sony would not approve of this technical innovation, but who cares the camera is still working, for the time being at least!
Apologies once again for the lack of commenting, but internet connections here are a nightmare. The only way I can currently post a blip is to prepare my write up beforehand on a Word document. I then have to speak nicely to the girl on reception to get the code and password for their business connection. Its then a quick cut and paste, upload and post before I overstay my welcome!