This may be the first time we are actually writing the blog as we go rather than all on one day so bear with us if it seems we're leaping about a bit.
Sunday: “errrm is this Surfers Paradise, it looks like Blackpool on steroids, but without the lights, shall we keep going?” answer from Chris “Yes!” Hope we haven't offended too many Aussies , but it's not as picturesque as we thought. Coolangatta was nicer, even with a cockroach infested bathroom and pool that had been closed owing to high electricity levels (if someone can explain this, please do, as electricity is surely bad in a swimming pool whatever the level!!).
We hit Brisbane and after a stressed out drive in through the city centre we arrived at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. Chris was fine driving, I just panic about city driving even if I am the passenger, hence my nickname, Sat-nag. Lone Pine was great, a little expensive at $76 in total but we decided to go here instead of Australia Zoo as it was cheaper and I mainly wanted to just hold a Koala. Plus, To be honest Steve got killed by the
Lou and Koala
Happier times before the 'poo incident'.
ray so what's the point?
Hopefully the picture will come out on here but I got to hold an adult Koala that had a constant pooing issue, hardly surprising as all they do all day is eat but when holding said Koala (which has been a life long dream) and it's so cute and poking its nose up you, the constant bum contractions that I could feel on my hands kinda took the edge off that special moment! Still, got some good photos and only a bit off poo on my top.
Turns out if you want to meet celebs in Oz the best place is here. The shop had photos of all sorts of people holding their Koalas. I like to think I was holding the same one as Marilyn Manson!! I'm pretty sure one of the owls had died though. Chris wouldn't tell anyone or take a picture but when you see three sat upright and you think you once heard they slept with their eyes open sat up, the one slumped over its perch headfirst didn't look so good. Oh well, will be a nice surprise for the children.
The best bit though, was
...don't you just love 'em?
seeing ickle baby Koala with Mamma Koala, seriously hope this picture gets us on the homepage of the blog. It was the cutest thing I have ever seen.
We had a nice day out around Brisbane itself on Melbourne Cup day. It was weird seeing all the ladies dressed up like they were going to the races but they were either going to work or a party. I still don't understand the excitement about this race. I can only compare it to Ascot or the Grand National but we don't get dressed up unless we're going to the actual races nor do all the towns throw parties, very odd but I shall suggest it to our government on my return
I also liked our caravan park in Brisbane as we were next to a tree which at dusk was filled with loads of fruit bats. I have never seen these in the wild and it was great, they are huge!!!
I have also developed a fondness for Aussie birds (the animal kind!!). Chris keeps telling me off for feeding them though. I don't know what most of them are apart from Magpies (much bigger and noisier
I think Sheffield could do with one.
than ours), Lorikeets and Cockatoos. I have however named some myself, there is Nerdy bird (looks like he's in a tweed suit and walks a bit like Basil Fawlty), Limpy bird (a big white thing with a huge long beak and they all seem to limp. Also I might add they are mean to one another, there are often the cool ones that bully loner ones, this made me sad!). There is also the Fat Bastard bird (these are I think like our blackbirds, much prettier but for their size can eat a lot of bread!!), Pirate Bird (as you guessed it just goes 'Arrrgggggg' a lot and the Exploding Sweep bird (this I think is the young magpie but they make a noise like Sootys friend Sweep which gets higher and higher pitched and makes the bird sound very stressed out and goes on for about 2 minutes). Both me and Chris are convinced if one gets to the right pitch it will go bang, very funny at times but also annoying in the early hours of the morning.
We had moved onto Bribie Island where it has pissed it down bucket-loads for the past 2 days so
we moved onto Alexandra Headland today, which is pretty but has a rocky beach so not to good for paddling, great for shell collecting and Chris has helped me complete my collection to bring home including 2 spirally ones, yay (so sad but really nothing else to entertain us that is free). Onto Noosa Heads tomorrow for a couple of days then the big turnaround back towards Sydney, only 3 weeks left in the van now. Chris's Section
I really liked Brisbane. It's a beautiful city. Lots of green everywhere - they even built a beach in the middle of the city! The sun was shining and we were feeling good. We walked around all day, looking at the old botanical gardens, over the bridge and to the wonderful South Bank area. They really did a good job here, including the beach. We went on the CAT (ferry) down the river, then for a spot of lunch. It was a good day, topped off with a few beers and catching some rays. Nice.
The day before, as Lou mentioned, we went to the Lone Pine zoo type place. A good morning out. Lou got shat on
Chris & Lou
On a boat with a ginger beard.
by a koala - bonus. I've had enough of zoos. Enough of the animal prostitution already!!!
Another random observation. In a supermarket I was looking at some 'tasty steaks' (basically they looked like burgers in the shape of steaks) thinking how nice they looked, until Lou pointed out it was pet food. Next to the regular meat counter & deli, containing all the steak, chicken, sausages, ham, etc, they have the pet food. Some of it looks like human food. Placed in a chilled cabinet right next to all the regular meat (did I mention this?). I wonder how many tourists have made this mistake, and maybe even gone all the way? Right next to the regular meat. Why? Forget Middle East peace, or and end to Third World hunger, these are the major issues in my life folks!!!
We've now made our way north towards the Sunshine Coast. First stop Bribie Island. Very nice spot, but it rained. It rained a lot! It has been very wet, in fact it's the wettest spring in Queensland since the 1870's! Combine this fact with the pound being at it's weakest rate against the Aussie dollar.....EVER....and it makes me wonder
about the timing of this trip and our luck. It's still drier than a British summer though, so can't complain too much.
One thing I like about the Aussies is how patriotic they are. They fly their flag outside their house, from their car and wear hats and shirts displaying the flag. Makes me wonder why the British feel they're unable to do the same without being branded a football hooligan or BNP party member. A bit of a shame I think. We've been to McDonalds a few times since we've been here. It's damn cheap here. The majority of the customers I've seen so far have been elderly. You don't see that many old people in maccy's in the UK. Ok, you get some, but not restaurants full of them like here. I always thought the secret to eternal life was in Big Mac sauce!
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