Saz and Dave's travels
Today was the first day of our Whitsundays trip on the boat 'Powerplay'. Luckily we didn't need to be on the boat until 11.30am so we got a nice lie in. After packing a small rucksack with enough stuff for the 2 days on the boat, we headed off to the jetty past the manmade lagoon (apparently named shagoon after one girl got an STI in her eye after swimming there!). Powerplay turned out to be smaller than we expected for the 19 people in our goup, but it was a really nice boat. It was a catamaran with a seating area at the back, hot tub at the front plus nets to sit on over the water. Inside was a cozy seating area which turned into beds at night, as well as 6 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. This description makes the boat sound massive but you must realise the dimensions. The bathroom was probably less than a metre square with a loo so tiny it may have been stolen from a primary school and the shower was just formed by pulling the tap fixture on the sink out on an extendable hose. Our 'bedroom' was just a tiny double bed, less than 6ft long which was immediately next to another double bed separated only by a curtain. Our bedroom was right under the boat and we had to climb over the other bed to get to ours making it all a bit claustrophobic but we had a small window at least which was nice. After boarding the boat and meeting the 4 crew members we went up to the higher deck (where the skipper was driving the boat) to do some sunbathing. We sat here for quite a while until the boat stopped close to a small beach. Here everyone had the chance to do some snorkelling and diving too if they wanted. Dave and I were kind of persuaded to try a dive and told if we didn't like it we could stop and not have to pay the $60 fee. First we all had to get kitted out though. As it is still jellyfish season, everyone had to put on a stinger suit which is just a wetsuit really. We also got a snorkel each and some fins. We then piled into the dinghy which took us to the small beach. Here we all got in to do some snorkelling whilst the more experienced divers went off to dive. The water was quite shallow over the coral making it a bit dificult to swim but it was amazing. We saw loads of cool fish, a stingray, sea anenomies and wierd things we couldn't identify. It was a bit cold so we were very glad of our stinger suits. After about 30 minutes the diving instructor shouted us over so we could do the introductory dive. We were kitted out with weights and oxygen tanks and then given a very brief talk on what to do. I gave it a go underwater for a bit before she took us through the safety exercises but really didn't like it so got out of the water. Dave however seemed fine and went on to do the proper dive which he seemed to enjoy but said he couldn't get the hang of the ballast and kept floating upwards! He got to see a massive fish though about 5 feet long with big lips that everyone round here calls Elvis which I was quite jealous about. When we got back on the boat later there were nachos with cheese and salsa waiting and hot tea and coffee which was great. We all got into some warm clothes before tea as it gets pretty cold here at night and we sat and chatted. Tea was a delicious affair of chicken, pasta and salad after which we all watched a DVD before having some drinks and going to bed.