Published: March 16th 2010March 16th 2010
Mooring east of Eden.
Our port of call was supposed to be Bateman’s Bay but was cancelled at the last minute. Certain improvements to the harbor were not made as promised and the mouth of the estuary is surrounded by sand bars and quite shallow. The Captain decided that it was too dangerous to call and instead we diverted to Eden.
Instead of rushing to shore, I took advantage of the quiet and stayed on board in the morning. After taking my walk I took my Kindle and went to the pool for a dip and soaked up a little sun. I enjoyed a Mexican lunch poolside and then I indulged myself in a massage and facial. By then it was close to four so I decided to take the tender and explore Eden.
There were three of us on the tender and we were met on shore by a playful sea lion that was hanging around looking for a handout. Eden is a fishing town, used to be a whaling town, and now includes fish farming in its economy. By that time of the day, most of the tourist support people had called it a day so I just wandered
about the pier, checking out the booths and chatting with a couple of ladies. I asked their advice as to what I should do or see and they invited me for a little your.
So off I went with Betty and Christine, both locals and sisters in there sixties. They drove me through their posh neighborhood, to the lookout that bisects Two Fold Bay and then to a beautiful surfing beach in the North Bay. There I saw a pair of Australian King Parrots in the wild. What a sight.
Next we drove to the local golf course. On the way I learned that Eden has a population of around 3,000. Its school system is divided into primary grades 1 through 6 and high school grades 7 through 12. The ladies are very proud of the high school. Its students routinely score high marks on the state exams and are offered a curriculum that is challenging and diverse.
At the golf course I walked onto the fairway and watched a fellow take a shot to the green. In the background, under the trees in the rough was a mod of about thirty kangaroos. I was able to walk up to about 30 feet and one large male snorted at me so I stopped in my tracks. These were gray’s and their numbers are increasing in urban areas because of the draught in the bush. At the back of the mob was a large red kangaroo. After checking me out for a second, he decided I was harmless and went back to grazing. I never expected to me able to see these guys in such numbers outside a zoo.
Then Christine drove into town and right into her garage. She was heading next door to help prepare dinner at the Fisherman’s Club and Betty and I walked up to her deli. The Aussie are wonderfully friendly. It was an extraordinary experience and I will never forget their kindness. I have been so fortunate to meet such people.
I walked about the town, hit the ATM and then walked back to the tender. The sea lion was still there and waved a flipper as we left the pier.