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Oceania » Australia » Queensland » Noosa Heads
February 27th 2017
Published: March 13th 2017
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We're now back in Noosa Heads to settle in for a few games of golf and try to get back on an exercise regime. Roger and Linda headed out for a 2 day tour of Fraser Island which is the largest sand island in the World and a Heritage listed site. They thoroughly enjoyed the experience which required touring in a special vehicle as most of the journey was on beaches and sand dunes. We may book the same tour later in our stay.

On February 24th, Linda and Roger head home after 3 weeks "down under" and we hope they had a great experience. Our plans over the next couple of weeks is to explore more deeply the Sunshine Coast and to take full advantage of the facilities at the resort and golf course. In addition to beautiful beaches and interesting National parks, Noosa Heads has the highest concentration of "round abouts" of any municipality in the country. Not only are they challenging to navigate, it is very easy to get disorientated particularly when, at least according to Debra, my sense of direction is terrible. After 3 weeks, I'm finally getting the hang of them and should be able to master the one and only round about in Niagara on the Lake (although it goes around the other way!!!)

An mentioned early, if you were listening to the news in Australia, it would be hard to distinquish between the news in Canada, except of course for the accent!! Donald Trump continues to dominate the media so no matter how far away you get, it's hard to escape the shenanigans!! One of the nuances in Australia is the low expectations to tip, particularly in the hospitality industry. Although dining out appears expensive, it is comparable to Canada once you consider the 15% +++ tip that is the protocol at home. Wages appear much higher in Australia and the minimum hourly rate is $17.75/hour versus Ontario which I think is about $11.50 and for liquor servers it's $9.90/hr. Entry level restaurants jobs in Australia, which are often unionized, pay around $20.00/hour so clearly higher wages are pushing up restaurant pricing. Also employees that work Saturday and Sunday are required to be paid what is called a penalty rate, which is time and a half on Saturday and double time on Sunday. Australia's overall wage rate at about 10% higher than Canada.

We've discovered the Noosaville Food Market each Sunday so stopped by for a "yummy" greasy breakfast and shopped for some fresh fruit, vegetables and meat. As with many outdoor markets, there was a high proportion of organic and all natural products being sold. Did manage to buy a rack of lamb which was more expensive than the New Zealand lamb we get at Costco in St. Catherines and in my view, wasn't quite as good.

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13th March 2017

General
Good to hear from you. Looks like you are still enjoying yourself. Dana you look good and happy waiting for breakfast.(Hat looks good) Hard to believe 2 months has passed. Weather here continues to be cold. Big storm coming Wednesday. I believe they said 25 cms in Niagara. You are not missing very much. Angela is starting to pack for Florida. We leave April 1. Nobody passed away this week yet. Went to Wylie's funeral in Chipman on Wednesday. Bud is holding his own. I believe a lot of his problems is anxiety which is impacting his breathing and heart rate. Wylie left him half of his estate which I estimated at $800,000 in total. Didn't seem to cheer him up. He could be grieving, but no outward signs. Talked with Jonathan since I returned. That's all for now. On my way to get gas for my snow blower. Life is cool is the Maritimes. Daryl
13th March 2017

I am envious....
I so enjoy reading about your adventures! With your descriptions, I almost feel I am there with you. Keep them coming please. Love & Hugs, Linda

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