>I did take a needed day of rest yesterday. Other things one could do from here would be the Barossa wine district, or the ocean road, which is supposed to be spectacular, or other national park bushwalking. But resting and strolling around Adelaide was enough for me today. I did have dinner in a restaurant called Melt, because it is the name of my favorite restaurant in my brooklyn neighborhood. It lived up to its namesake, with a great tapas menu that I grazed through…they also had wood burning oven pizzas, but I overlooked those for the tapas.
Today I leave for Airlie Beach which is located in Queensland, Australia, home to the Great Barrier Reef. (Just heard on the news that Prince William is also heading to Queensland today! But not to the area where I will be 🙂 I will fly to Hamilton Island, then take the Cruise Whitsunday Ferry to Abel Point Marina which is a short hop to my next stop, the Adventure Whitsunday Resort. You may wonder how I stumbled upon this particular place to stay to experience the Great Barrier Reef? And…..there is a story there!
In December, Eileen’s sisters, Trish and Mary Kathryn, as well as her nieces, Jenn and Kristin, had come to visit me in NY. One evening I took them to my favorite Chinatown dive for dinner (ok, now you want to know the name of the NY restaurant, but I will need to look it up as it is something quite complicated like, Good Chinese Food, or something similar). It is the kind of restaurant with just a handful of mostly 8-person tables, and they seat separate parties together to fill the tables. They sat us down with a couple who ended up being from Australia, which made for immediate conversation since I had just booked my plane ticket, and Australia was going to be a stop on my RTW trip. We were curious how they had picked that particular Chinese restaurant and it was one of the typical tourist tricks…I.e., they walked by and it looked like a popular place! As the conversation ensued, I asked them what they do in Australia, and they said they owned a resort in Queensland! And they handed me their property brochure for the Adventure Whitsunday Resort. So a month or so later, when I was booking that part of my trip, I thought “what the heck” — it just seemed like another one of those “it’s a small world” moments — so I reached out to them and they were very excited to hear from me and immediately booked me a cabin, so here I go! Many of my friends have asked how they have fared with the floods and cyclone….they are not in the range of the rivers which flooded, but the cyclone did hit their part of the coast, and they were lucky to only lose some of their trees. Also all of these weather events, including continued rainfall, have affected the reef, so it will be interesting to see what the reef has to offer. But, regardless, I am looking forward to this next part of my “Adventure.”
Meanwhile, time for some parting shots from South Australia…. First from womadelaide…
This French guy is apparently a regular at the festival, bringing his larger than life puppets….this rooster, and his monkey (see below) were his new inventions this year.
More of the Papua New Guinea dancers….
Aboriginal face painting (below) was a popular thing at the festival.
And from Kangaroo Island (thanks to Brenda for some great touring!)….
The goanna lizard……
I promised I wouldn’t show all rock climbing attempts 🙂