6 June 2012
It was so lovely to get many wishes of Happy Birthday over the last couple of days, thank you. It was really nice to receive them and hear from so many people, including two renditions of “happy birthday” over the phone!
Lisa had planned a special treat for me on the day and we had driven up the coast from Fraser to arrive in Airlie Beach in time. Airlie Beach is a bit of a touristy town as it is the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands, a group of tropical islands just off the coast in this part of Queensland. Lisa had booked us onto a sailing boat trip out to one of the islands where we snorkelled and had a picnic lunch. We had a great day, sailing (or motoring as there was no wind!) across flat calm waters, we even saw a couple of dolphins and what could have been a turtle on our way out to a small tropical island where we moored up and went for a swim. The turquoise waters viewed from above were not as clear once we were snorkelling as there had been some storms recently, but in the shallows we saw lots of fish and coral, Lisa even saw a reef shark, it looks exactly as you would imagine a shark, but thankfully it’s only small!
We snorkelled along the reef at the edge of the small island, and I got carried away in a little current away from Lisa and another couple who were snorkelling with us. I turned around and started to make my way back against the current when I was joined by a turtle only a couple of metres below me, we both made our way slowly against the current, me paddling away at the surface and the turtle gracefully, lazily beating his front flippers and gliding along below me. It was a special moment, such a graceful creature heading on its way, and allowing me to be near it, before it headed down and out of view. What a birthday treat.
After a picnic on the tropical island we swam again, this time back to the boat and when we arrived we were greeted by a few bat fish that were a little too friendly for my likeing. I quickly feel a bit nervous and out of my depth when bigger fish are right next to you and coming right up to your face, more practice needed!
A relaxed trip back to the mainland with the German couple on the boat and a celebratory drink afterwards topped the day off, a great day of chatting, snorkelling and relaxing, I am certainly getting older, and settling into it!