The good thing about the Sunshine Coast is that it seems that you can always expect two things, one, that it will mostly be sunny (as the name suggests) and two, the beers are always cold. An additional plus for us was being able to bum about at my cousin James and his wife Helens place for our time there.
We arrvived in Brisbane at about 2 in the afternoon and after some confusion with our pickup service, we managed to make it to our rental car and successfully navigate the M1 north to Coolum Beach. After much beer and catching up with James and Helen, we passed out with that travel exhaustion that can only come with long hours of flying, driving and airport stress.
The next few days were devoted largely to chilling the most down at the beach in Noosa/ Coolum or snorkelling about and ruining some poor fishes day, this pattern broken only to sleep, eat or drink beer. Its a tough life. By the weekend we were suitably relaxed and looking forward to hanging out with James and Helen as it was Helens birthday. The evening was well spent with James doing his best to produce a BBQ/ Braai an Australian/ South African would be proud of, but still managed to burn the snarlers. I asked to cook my kangaroo separately. A point in case, I must add that after later going to the Australia Zoo again, home of the late Steve Irwin, I have made a point of not eating Kangaroo in the future, as the guilt of seeing one up close is too much to bear. The next day, after an early morning dawn patrol by James and I, we were given a tour of the Queensland Hinterland by Helen as we drove to Eumundi market in the morning and had a cheese and wine lunch in Maleny, which was most agreeable. On our way back to Coolum, we stopped off for a few drinks and a hilltop view of the Sunshine Coast at a quasi-english style pub, to watch the sun go slowly down.
Sunday was devoted to a river fishing cruise in a hired pontoon down the Noosa River in which we managed to rope H's parents, Lee and Debbie, into the fray, which worked really well because I cant drive a boat to save my life and James drives Miss Daisy slowly. Sorry James. Actually, the only success of the day came from James catching a 15cm bream of something of that nature, which would probably have only fed a larger fish let alone anyone on the boat, and so it was returned to whence it came. Still, it was better than my catch of the day, a 30cm twig.
As the Monday was a public holiday, we decided on taking out the kayaks in Noosa Bay. Although by the time we got down there, the place was packed, we still managed to find a semi secluded spot and take the kayaks out to inspect the holes in the shark nets, and jump off in locations to snorkel. The pickings were slim but we still managed to see a sand shark and a small boxfish. James also swears he saw a ray. In the late afternoon Em and I went for a paddle around tee tree bay, were we witnessed either a solitary dolphin or a large fish jump out the water on a few occasions.
With James and Helen back at work over the next few days, we had a bit of time to kill and did so successfully, by going to the zoo, relaxing on the beach etc. On our last night on the coast, we drove down to Brisbane to see another cousin of mine, Chris, who is living and working in Brisbane now and has a great place with fantastic views over Brisbane near Kangaroo Point. This, however, is the closest we got to Brisbane in our travels as we woke up early the next morning to fly off to Cairns for our final leg in Australia.
A special thanks to James and Helen for putting up with us for our time down on the Sunshine Coast and sorry for drinking all Jame's beer.
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