Posts Tagged ‘Airlie Beach Lagoon’

377.Sunday 15th June 2014. All quiet until the CO-PILOT arrives …

16/06/2014

Monday 9th June

Today is the Queens Birthday holiday.

I had plans.

The weather had other ideas.

There was a strong wind warning. The wind was strong enough to start tearing the tarpaulin covering WWWGO.

There was wind driven rain on and off all day.

It was the sort of day which drags enthusiasm out of the mind and replaces it with lethargy. It was the sort of day you suddenly find you have been sitting in a chair watching the weather as the minutes tick past.

Hmmm! How long have I been sitting here?

I did manage to do some shredding of garden waste between showers and I did manage to rake some leaves only to see them swirl away in the wind and land somewhere different waiting for me to rake them again.

Sigh!

There was a bright start to the day in the early morning gloom. Yesterday I had walked the Centennial Walkway from Shingly beach to the northern end of Abel Point Marina. I enjoyed that walk so when I woke at 5.30 decided, while laying there in the dark, to walk the Centennial Walkway from the Sailing Club at Airlie Beach to the northern end of Abel Point Marina.

Sunrise at Airlie Beach.

Sunrise at Airlie Beach.

The beginning of the Centennial Walkway from the Sailing Club to Abel, Point Marina, Shingly Beach, Whisper Bay and Cannonvale Beach.

The beginning of the Centennial Walkway from the Sailing Club to Abel, Point Marina, Shingly Beach, Whisper Bay and Cannonvale Beach.

Airlie Beach man made lagoon. Popular with locals and visitors alike. Airlie only has a small stretch of sand and at low tide sharp rocks and coral are exposed. It is not the best place for swimming. It is also subject to huge tides, strong winds AND in Summer, deadly box jelly fish. So the lagoon was built. Clean water, lifeguartds, green grass, barbecue facilities, sheltered picnic tables, gardens, showers, toilets and just a relaxing place to be. The shops border the entire length of the lagoon.

Airlie Beach man made lagoon. Popular with locals and visitors alike. Airlie only has a small stretch of sand and at low tide sharp rocks and coral are exposed. It is not the best place for swimming. It is also subject to huge tides, strong winds AND in Summer, deadly box jelly fish. So the lagoon was built. Clean water, lifeguartds, green grass, barbecue facilities, sheltered picnic tables, gardens, showers, toilets and just a relaxing place to be. The shops border the entire length of the lagoon.

The deeper end of the lagoon.

The deeper end of the lagoon.

This is the only section of the walk which has an incline. It is near Coral Point and leads down to a rocky coral fringed beach.

This is the only section of the walk which has an incline. It is near Coral Point and leads down to a rocky coral fringed beach.

The pathway has become a boardwalk of which there are several along the walk to Cannonvale.

The pathway has become a boardwalk of which there are several along the walk to Cannonvale.

The old part of Abel Point Marina. The walk continues along the front of the buildings

The old part of Abel Point Marina. The walk continues along the front of the buildings

The ground was still mostly damp from overnight rain but the air felt fresh and invigorating. I must do this walk more often. Many other people, some jogging some walking, some with dogs and some just strolling were out and about. Council workers who arrive early were cleaning the picnic areas and parks and free barbecues around the lagoon. They do this every morning so families and visitors can see a clean inviting lagoon area. Good onyer to the Council Cleanup guys.

Friday 13th June

The strong wind continued every day and has torn the tarpaulin, almost in a straight line, almost exactly in the middle. Only a few strands remain before the two halves separate entirely.

Sigh!

Today I have a, to me, a humorous work tale to relate.

A year or two before I retired I asked for permission to install and use a second computer monitor screen. It was not long before I wondered how I ever managed to do the type of work I do, requiring several files open at once, with only one screen. Sure, with Windows you can open and shrink screens as needed. Often though when talking with clients I need to refer to information which may appear over several files. With two screens I can read the two files side by side. Other staff realised the advantage I had and agitated for a second screen. When I left, one of the directors was having a second screen installed on a trial basis.

Now jump forward 5 years. Everybody in the office has two screens and they believe it is only a natural and sensible way to work. Two screens is commonplace. This week I had a new monitor screen installed and as a result I now have three screens. The IT guru left no instructions on closing down one screen so I now work with three screens. Wow! What a difference I can have three programmes and files open at once in fact I can have several files open and can switch between them with ease. It was not long before other staff realised I now had three screens and crowded around to see how they work. Works just fine! One staff member commented that it took almost 5 years for management to approve two screens for each staff member and catch up with me now they will have to agitate for a third screen to catch up with me again.

Saturday 14th June

The sun was bright in the sky when I woke this morning so washed the bed linen and hung it to dry.

I baked a Red Velvet Cake in honour of Donnis arriving this morning. I was looking forward to her arrival and we could have coffee, Red Velvet Cake and a dollop[ or three of freshly whipped cream.

I then headed off to Whitsunday Airport at Proserpine. Her plane was due in at 10.45 and after allowing 10 minutes to collect baggage we should be home by 11.30 for that coffee n cake. The cute little regional airport at Proserpine has changed. No longer the free parking outside the terminal or or on busy days in the surrounding undeveloped land. Now it has a two minute limit outside the terminal with parking police moving people on. There is paid parking and it seems the local friendly regional airport has suddenly become big business. Inside the terminal you can no longer buy a coffee and sit somewhere and watch the people and planes arriving and leaving. The only way to get a coffee is to enter the secure area, have yourself and your baggage scanned and pulled aside for a personal inspection. Of course to even get that far you have to get in a queue just to go through the scanner. I no longer felt like a coffee while waiting. Besides, airport coffee is notoriously tasteless and expensive.

The plane (Tiger Air) was 30 minutes late and baggage was another 15 minutes before it started to arrive.

Grrr! My welcome cake and coffee plan was untangling.

It was pushing towards midday and heavy rain was falling by the time we left the airport. WOT THE! The sun was shining when I left home!

Donnis wanted coffee…now! So we visited the Whitsunday Gold Coffee Plantation which is on our way home and which we have never visited. The place has a certain rustic charm with seating spread out in little nooks around the coffee shed. Upholstery is a made from re-cycled coffee bags on top of various farm implements. In all it has a certain anti glam charm about it. Except every seat was murder on my back.

Two coffees and a small muffin cost $14.40…It was cheaper at the airport and this is the place where they grow the coffee.

Donnis brought a head cold with her so she spent the afternoon closing windows, doors and curtains to keep the breeze out and the warmth in. Poor dear. Having a head cold in the tropics is less fun than a head cold anywhere else.

At least we had coffee, cake and cream in the afternoon.

Sunday 15th June 2014

Not much to report today.

Donnis is still unwell and stayed inside rugged up and resting.

The tarpaulin covering WWWGO had completely split down the centre but only the outside seams stopped the two halves from parting. A pair of scissors fixed that.

I removed the tarpaulin and using the biggest piece put it back on WWWGO side to side instead of front to back.

That was the extent of my day.

Sigh!

Perhaps next week will be more interesting.

344. Sunday 24th November 2013. A tale of two towns…

24/11/2013

Monday 18th November

Just another workday for me.

Donnis had a day off so she drove to Moree, a 300Klm round trip. She had several reasons to go.

  1. The air conditioner in the accommodation is a central unit and does not work well and is often turned off by the other nurse because she does not like air con especially when she is sleeping. So, when the other nurse turns the AC off no cool air gets into Donnis room. With temperatures expected to reach 50° over the coming months, she will need AC especially when she finishes night shift and needs to sleep during the day. Donnis wanted a portable unit, one she could plug into power and has its exhaust air vented through a window fitting. She also bought block out curtains to make the room darker during the day.
  2. Her mobile phone will not work in a remote rural area. She needs a “blue tick” phone, capable of receiving weak signal. At the same time she can upgrade to a smart phone and a data package. After discussion she has a new phone, a car cradle and charger, a home base station charger and an external antenna.
  3. She needed groceries and cooking utensils.
  4. For some reason a juicer was on her shopping list.

The bank account took a severe battering when she had finished.

Sigh!

Tuesday 19th November

With her new phone the CO-PILOT is able to call any time of the day or night but so far she has not mastered the intricacies of the data package. For example, email, facebook and skype.

Sigh!

Wednesday 20th November

On my way to work I got a call to say my rebuilt AC compressor has arrived so dropped RALLYE at the workshop. Just as I finished my shift they phoned to say it was ready. Oh Joy! Oh heaven! Oh delightful! Oh bliss! I can drive with windows closed and it is cool inside. As a bonus I can hear the radio.

The CO-PILOT called. She and her room mate drove 300 Klms round trip to Lightning Ridge and back to Colli as Donnis has night shift at 10.30. We had been to Lightning Ridge in 2010 and I am sort of jealous as we both liked the town and we wanted to return.

She still has not mastered data and we discovered the patch kit for the external antenna is the wrong type and will not fit her phone. A nurse at the hospital is going to Moree and will return the patch kit and ask them to mail it back to Donnis as the nurse is going on holidays and will not return for several weeks.

Thursday 21st November.

Another overcast day in Airlie Beach including a late afternoon of thunderstorms, lightning and rain. It is hot in Colli and the CO-PILOT is ecstatic about her new AC. Learning to use data on her phone is still an elusive task especially as there is lots of looking around Colli, swimming, meeting people and forging friendships.

Friday 22nd November

The day started overcast and became greyer, if that is possible as the day wore on. Weather forecast is for RAIN. Not showers, RAIN! Rain for several days. In the early afternoon I drove to Shingley Beach a delightful manicured park, saved from obscurity by the Whitsunday Shire Council. The park overlooks Abel Point Marina, a block of multi-million $ units, Peninsular Airlie Beach at Abel Point.

Abel Pont Marina from Shingley Beach

Abel Point Marina from Shingley Beach

It is also a placed for the outrigger canoe club to store their umm err outrigger canoes.

Outrigger storage area at Shingley Beach.

Outrigger storage area at Shingley Beach.

There are showers toilets, picnic tables and a small rubble/sand beach. The afternoon was heavily overcast and not great light for photographs.

Just after 7pm the rain began…heavy rain which continued all night, well at least those parts of the night when I woke and heard the rain. I could hear the creek behind WWWGO gurgling as the water rose and race on its way downhill towards Watering Horse Creek and into the Coral Sea. I dreamt that somehow Donnis and I were crossing a flooded raging creek and the bridge we were on collapsed and we both ended in the water clinging to a steep slippery bank. I called to her to join me and as she let go the handhold she sank and disappeared. That is when I woke with a fright! It was 4am and still dark outside.

Saturday 23rd November

At first light I could see how far the creek had risen during the night. The water was rushing along making flooded creek sounds. Perhaps the sound of the creek penetrated my subconscious and created the dream. It was still raining, just as heavily as when it started last night.

We have developed a leak around the roof hatch. Or is that the same leak which has plagued us for two years? Whatever it is it only leaks when we have very heavy rain and where WWWGO is perfectly level so water cannot easily run off. Outside I discovered the unlidded plastic box in which I keep several pairs of shoes had not been fully pushed under the shelter of WWWGO. All the shoes were wet and sitting in a puddle of water.

Sigh!

I also chose today to defrost the fridge and while my back was turned, the defrosted material leaked out of the open fridge door and soaked all the floor mats.

Another deep sigh!

I hate living with damp carpet and mats under my feet. They seem to take only a short while before they smell, umm err damp! I can take them out of SWWWGO but as it is still raining outside I cannot dry them out just yet.

Grrr!

In the afternoon I bought some tent poles and if tomorrow is a bit dry I will extend the shade cloth which currently just hangs down and although it provided shade on the dinette and fridge side, it does not allow a free passage of air. I should be able to park RALLYE under as well.

Sunday 24th November.

Woke to sunshine with birdsong at 5am.

After getting mats and shoes into the sunshine to dry I then tackled the shade cloth. Yes! Rallye will fit in…just. I added a tarpaulin on top of the shade cloth and parked RALLYE underneath. It will now get some protection from the sun and even some protection from the rain. We also get a cooled breeze through the dinette window.

Shade shelter for RALLYE.

Shade shelter for RALLYE.

In the afternoon after I had completed my chores it was time to relax and drive into Airlie Beach. I felt it would be safe to do so as Schoolies Week (http://www.schoolies.com/2013) is over and most, if not all, have gone home. Umm it’s not that I thought it would be unsafe but more a case that I am more likely to find a parking spot now that all the party goes have gone. By way of explanation, Australian school leavers gravitate to places such as Airlie Beach, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Byron Bay. In the week of madness there is lots of music and rampant testosterone fuelled by too much booze and drugs. Any brains the schoolies had to enable them to graduate seem to have been left at home. Fights are normal. Apart from that they all have a good time, carry those memories with them forever and go home at the end of the week.

I walked around the lagoon, a giant free open swimming enclosure for (well yes it is free to the visitors, the locals pay for it by way of council rates and by way of an impost on local stores) swimming, relaxing, family play area, barbecues with some of the best weather and views on the planet.

The Airlie Beach Lagoon.

The Airlie Beach Lagoon.

Barbecues at the Lagoon.

Barbecues at the Lagoon.

I then walked around the rocks and mangroves on the north side of the beach.

Walway which begins at the Boathouse just on the road to Shute Harbour and follows the coast along Airlie Beach, through to Coral point through to Abel Point Marina, Shingley Beach all the way through to Cannonvale Beach. If it was not so hot and humid I would do the walk. In fact I may just do the walk early in the morning on one of my days off.

Walway which begins at the Boathouse just on the road to Shute Harbour and follows the coast along Airlie Beach, through to Coral point through to Abel Point Marina, Shingley Beach all the way through to Cannonvale Beach. If it was not so hot and humid I would do the walk. In fact I may just do the walk early in the morning on one of my days off.

There is a boat wreck here, washed up on the rocks during or after ex tropical cyclone Oswald in January 2013.

Boat wreck.

Boat wreck.

Skipping the light fantastic over the slippery and sharp rocks, even a cursory look at the rocks shows the area’s volcanic origins.  http://www.tourismwhitsundays.com.au/Portals/0/Assets/Documents/QPWS%20Whitsundays%20Nature%20Culture%20and%20History_August2009.pdf

Volcanic Rock on Coral Point.

Volcanic Rock on Coral Point.

Now the late afternoon black storm clouds began rolling in and it is time to batten down the hatches and put my shoes and chairs somewhere they will not get wet when the rain begins. The warning thunder began just before 8pm.

Hogs Breath Cafe, Main St, Airlie Beach. Most Australians would have heard of Hogs Breath. What they do not know is this is the traditional original home of Hogs Breath from where all the others  began.

Hogs Breath Cafe, Main St, Airlie Beach. Most Australians would have heard of Hogs Breath. What they do not know is this is the traditional original home of Hogs Breath from where all the others began.