We get the bus down to Airlie beach from Cairns it looks the same on a map as maybe London to Cambridge actually its more like London to Africa. Anyway we get off the bus 10 days later and check into our place then go and look for a lovely little sailing trip around the Whitsundays and to see the great 'Whitehaven Beach'. We pay a discounted rate because we are leaving the next day and there is space left on the boat (wonder why). It seems the worst of the rainy season is coming to an end so things should be fine we may just get a few showers. We are only going for 2 days 2 days, at most I will accept 1 rain shower.
Anyway we head down to the harbour (on the way i lose $50 within seconds of taking it from the cash machine, i blame Peter Petrelli) and meet up with the rest of our group, it turns out there are 12 of us going, the boat can take 18 so it should be good! Dont want it to cramped! On our way to the boat a sailing type guy shouts to one of our crew "Whooooo, winds picking up great weather for sailing". I believe his definition of good saling weather and my definition of good sailing weather is completely different. We arrive at Freightrain, our boat. I would prefer if our boat had some sort of reference to sailing and not trains. Even Titanic would be better. Freightrain is an old racing Maxi yatch which used to sail the Sydney to Hobart race every year. Apparently a big deal in Oz, i suppose similar to the Steel and Sons cup! So we set sail and its lovely and calm mainly because we were still in the harbour, evn when we get out into the open waters its still good so things are looking up, the suns out, slightly, so we all lie on the deck and try and catch a few rays. In our group, we have a weird Irish guy (not me), 1 scot, 1 welsh, (nearly a joke by itself) 2 really weird Danish girls, a french guy who doesnt seem to like stuff and a German couple, the guy Claud (which i thought was a french name) who looks like David Wailliams and the girl Steffie. A real great group, if i could have found concrete boots, i would have knocked myself out with them!!!!
Our first stop is some bay in Hook island where we go Sorkelling, this time charlotte jumps straight in, maybe it something to do that she is in a full body wetsuit that she knows nothing can get through. Anyway we are in and we get to see some coral and loads of fish, we agree its definitely better than what we saw in the GBR near Cairns. After the snorkelling we prepare for dinner, we sit and drink wine, as it has took us 3 hours to get out to hook island. While waiting for dinner we start to realise that actually 12 people is probably that all I could have withstood, as it is already cramped and me and charlotte have been giving the worst bed possible. Anyway we sit and have some dinner Spag bol, lovely by the way, and we sit and watch it get dark. As it was getting dark Charlotte heard then spotted to Dolphins just larking about in the bay then swimming off, which was a novelty. Later when it dark we kept hearing large splahes in the sea, i did a quick head counted and no one had jumped over board, but to our delight our chef told us it was just squid jumping out of the water! Squid you say i just hope they are not the squid i have seen in the movies!
The next morning we go snorkelling again, then get back have some breakfast and head off towards Whitehaven beach. As we got on our way our Captain suggested maybe we put on some rain jackets as it may get a bit choppy. By choppy he meant 2.5m waves and a 30knot wind. for the first hour or so this was actually fun, more like being on a rollcoaster that you got soaked on every now and again. Just to explain, all the passengers had to sit on the high side of the boat to try and balance the boat out, and this would also make the boat go faster. At most points the boat was sailing at around a 45 degree angle. Also during the the first day and that morning the crew had asked us to help out the odd time in doing things with the sails and all. So after about a hour into that days trip. They told us that the high side was gonig to swap as we where changing direction, so we all had to crawl to the back of the boat. Now how ever the body works with balance and sight and everything, but getting to the back of the boat and not being able to see where we were going, made me feel slightly less well than i did when i could see. So there we are sailing along me turning a different shade of green every 30seconds, then the Captains asks me to help out pulling on some ropes, excellent idea, pick the guy who is doing his best impersonation of the Grinch! So he suggests I give it a couple of practices go, all i have to do is give it a quick pull and wrap the rope around a cog, easy, well not so much until the 7th go when I finally get it! Anyway he gave the shout for the real go and everything went fine. Now since i was concentrating on pulling this stupid rope and not throwing up on myself, i had failed to nothing that pretty much everyone else on the boat was enjoying this experince as much as me! Anyway only about half of the group make it to the highside, and I am the last in the row, luckily. With 5 minutes on being on that side, my body decided I no longer needed to benefit from the nutrition of last nights dinner or this morning breakfast and it would be a lot better suited on the side of the boat. So thats where it all ended up! Big bright orange sick all over the side of the boat. Beautiful!!!
Anyway we found out the reason we changed high side was because we where turning around as we werent going to make Whitehaven beach! (only thing we wanted to see) and we went to an other bay on Hook Island so we could go for a nature walk! Before we set off we had lunch, so we where all standing about, when this funny smells appears, I put it down the the french guy, or lunch and ignore it. The chef, looks up and looks confused and walks around the cabin trying to find out where it was coming from, so from that i guessed it wasnt lunch and it was the French guy. Seconds later charlotte comes running from the front of the boat shouting about some smoke, and all of a sudden there is smoke pilling out from under all the seats and filling the whole cabin. My prayers had been answered, helicopter rescue and that stupid boat would sink! The boat was on fire, kind of! We where ushered onto the deck as the Captain and the chef tried to put out the fire. I always thought being on a boat when it was on fire would be fine as there was water everywhere! Then i realised that boat would have to sink first for the water the boat was floating on would put the fire out! This was turning out not to be a good trip! They put the fire out, electrics, and we go off on our little nature walk on the island to see some aboriginal stuff! We get back and everything has been fixed and we have to stay on the stupid boat for an other night . We have dinner and sit about not wanting to drink any wine as i still feel horrible from my earlier magic tricks! So that night was definitely a bit quieter as i think most people were feeling the same as me!
The next morning we went snorkelling and I finally found Nemo the stupid fish, of course by this time i ran out of pictures on my underwater camera. I never asked Charlotte if she found one near Cairns, or I cant remember being told about it!
We sail back to Airlie Beach which takes about 3 hours longer than i would want it too take, and we get off and kiss the ground. One thing that I gained from that trip was boat legs. For 2 days after the trip every now and again, espeically in confined spaces I would get the feeling that I was swaying, as i was on a boat! Excellent!
Our next stop was Hervey Bay, but Ozzies actually pronouce it Harvey Bay. This place seemed really cool, but unfortunately we where only there for one day and all we did was wash our clothes. of course all I left myself with was 1 pair of shorts, and we needed to go to the shops to get some food. So i was that idiot you see walking down the street with no top on, with only the tiniest bit of sun in the sky! And of course it started to rain, so i looked like an even bigger idiot! Well at least we got our clothes washed for the 2nd time in 2 months!