First Impressions in Australia -
We sailed into Bundaberg on
the Burnett River in Australia's Queensland on December 8th '05.
After enormous amounts of rumor mongering and anxiety about Australia's
apparently draconian formalities on arrival - it was quick and
easy. After overnighting at the Bundaberg Port Marina - lost in
the middle of nowhere - we came up the river where we have a pleasant
mooring right by the nice small city, really just a town, of Bundaberg.
We came here and plan to head
further south in Oz - a couple hundred miles down to Brisbane
- to stay away from any cyclones that might develop during this
South Pacific Cyclone Season.
Here's a little chart that
shows our trip - from the right side onward - from Tonga to Opua,
New Zealand, then up to Fiji and on westward to Vanuatu, down
to New Caledonia, and finally to Bundaberg, Australia.
What a happy
surprise it's been here in Australia so far!
It's been positively hot,
not warm but hot. That's a delightful change from freezing New
Zealand during our last cyclone season!
After the scarcity throughout
the South Pacific islands of local fauna, the mad proliferation
of animals here, and especially bird life, is a wonder! Huge flocks
of noisy chattering colorful little parrots fill the sky morning
and evening as they go to and return from yet another hard parrot's
day's work. Waterbirds? It's stunning. Creepy huge fury flying
fox bats fill the sky each evening after sunset as they cruise
in their thousands down the river to some unknown destination.
There is "a however,"
however, and that's that we are back into the realm of dangerous
critters too. We haven't seen that since leaving Trinidad and
South America. Around here, there are around a dozen varieties
of venomous snakes, there are bull sharks, and offshore there
must surely be Great White Sharks too.
But, happily, we don't have
to contend in these parts with the infamous salt water crocodiles
or the man-eating flies that live north of here.
So here are a few quick photos
that we've taken since our arrival. . .