November 2011- Page 2
Mooloolaba, along the beach.
One activity we had to do was go for a visit to the Australia Zoo. Ever since the kids were little and we watched ad nauseaum "Wiggly Safari" where the Wiggles visit Steve Irwin at the Australia Zoo I have wanted to visit. Not sure how it would be now that Steve isn't around anymore. (He died from a stingray barb to the heart diving or snorkelling near Port Douglas in 2006.) You can take the Zoo bus for $5.00 each from Mooloolaba. Admissions were very pricey.
We saw quite a few Australian animals, and took in their feature show at the Crocoseum where some birds flew around, they let some snakes into the water and fed a crocodile some fish, chicken and sausages. The kids had fun feeding the kangaroos and elephants. I really enjoyed the snake section, learning and seeing all about Australias many venoumous snakes. There is one section of the zoo that is relatively new called Africa, you have to take a shuttle over to it. This section made us kind of sad. There were a family of rhinocerus, a few giraffe, and a couple of cheetahs, but they were still working on this section and it was unfinished and it just looked totally out of place. Supposedly this was Steves dream and the zoo is still trying to finish it. The zoo is trying to keep it's popularity up on the back of Terri and Bindi and it was kind of depressing seeing how much they are trying. There are pictures of the kid everywhere, all over the zoo. In the store, you can buy a Bindi doll, tshirt, books she has written, posters, buttons, backpacks, you name it, it is there. I think they need to learn the word "oversaturation". It was kind of like Australia's version of Disneyland. However, that being said, we are glad we went and saw it, it was a really great day.
The Mooloolah River and Canal System - once you go around the marinas and yacht club you can anchor. This is part of the canal system. There are million dollar homes all through the canals with their yachts docked right out front. There are boat cruises through the canal system so we decided to go in our dingy and take a look.
Mooloolaba to Manly - 55.84nm
We have been having a great time in Manly, a suburb of Brisbane. The weather has been fantastic and from our position in the marina we are very close to the park, a swimming pool, and all the amenities we need are a close walk away. There are kilometres of bike and walking tracks around and we are looking forward to exploring the area.
Meeting up with Mates in Manly
We have been meeting up,with our cruiser friends that we haven't seen in awhile which has been really fun. Our friends on Merlin told us that there is a place around here where one can play underwater hockey - never heard of that before, must check it out!
Success, Success Today!!! After over a year of trying in various ports to teach Cari how to ride a bike, she finally got it. We are all so excited, but mostly she is very proud of herself. Way to go Cari!
Last year we spent this holiday with our American friends on Kamaya in the Cavelli Islands in New Zealand, how does the time pass by so fast? This year we spent this important American celebration with our friends on Tahina. There was no turkey to be found, but being cruisers you improvise, and we had a lovely traditional meal of turkey and ham slices, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, fresh bread, cranberry sauce and for dessert, home made pound cake and apple pie with ice cream! The best part of course is spending important celebrations with friends who end up feeling like family when you are so far from home. Thanks Frank and Karen for a wonderful evening!
Trip into Brisbane
Manly is a suburb of Brisbane, they have a commuter train from Manly into the city. This is a nice quiet ride however the day that we decided to go the tracks were being renovated so we were able to take the train half way, then we were diverted onto a bus. On the way there, it was a direct route but on the way back, we made several stops and the bus driver even got lost! It ended up taking at least 1.5 hours to get home! Yiza! That being said, Brisbane seemed like one cool city. We got off the bus at Southbank. This is a part of the city with a huge pool in front of the river, river boat tours, a street designed for a market, lots of shops and restaurants. Of course the kids found the homemade candy shop and bought a huge gobstopper each.
Museum of Modern Art (Moma)
Along with Karen and Frank on Tahina, we made our way over to the Museum of Modern Art. What a great museum, the entrance fee is free which adds to the
appeal of the visit. There were several interesting exhibits, one of which was a Japanese woman in her 80's, Yayoi Kusama. One of her obsessions are polka dots,
here is a direct quote "...a polka-dot has the form of the sun, which is a symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form of the moon, which is calm. Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing. Polka-dots become movement... Polka dots are a way to infinity." They had a couple of rooms available where the kids could take a sheet of polka dot stickers and go nuts and they had a ball. We also saw one of the biggest tapa clothes that I have ever seen. In Tonga, these are called Ngatu ta uli, this one in the museum was one of five folded to make a platform for the casket of Teviti Tofavaha Tuai in June 2011 .