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Published: March 20th 2014
Tender lowering to go into Cairns
Queen Mary Day 6
A day of excitement and rush. An earlier breakfast so thousands could disembark to do various tours, sightseeing and just about nothing. We chose the just about nothing.
Once breakfast had concluded we had to go to the “tender allocation” spot collect a boarding pass number and wait to be called. There were 8 of the side tenders, also known as lifeboats, in use and they hold 120 persons. Also employed were two local boats that held around 300 persons. A trip to shore lasted about 25-30 minutes and we were nearly two hours in the waiting area. At the dock at Yorkey’s Knob we waited for 25 seater buses to shuttle us into Cairns a further 20 minutes away. Once in Cairns we had a bite to eat for lunch, found a decent map as the Cunard one still had the Ansett Airlines building as a highlight. Found a post office that had run out of stamps as everyone from QM2 was posting cards, letters, even parcels.
Off to find a supermarket and a bank. Had a look at cameras as one had “died” on board. While
Tender docking spot
doing this little excursion we bumped into Sharon Mathewson a friend of daughters and we chatted for a while. She said that her work colleague, Andrew, was meeting three aunts who were on QM2. Those three aunts are ones with whom we often have chats and were in fact sitting with us as we waited our turn on the tender.
We all had to be back at the shuttle bus pick-up point no later than 3.30 p.m. and the last tender shuttle was to leave at 4.00 p.m. When we left Cairns at about 2.30 we were stunned to see a huge line-up waiting to board the boats going back to QM2. Out trip back to land was with a couple from Para Hills, a north Adelaide suburb.
Eventually we were all back on board and accounted for by 5.30 p.m. While we were having the evening meal we left Cairns and are heading for Torres Strait and 4-5 days at sea.
Goodnight to 19 March 2014.
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