Friday, November 28, 2008

We Spend 2 Weeks in Brisbane

After we sailed from Bundaberg we headed south for Brisbane and expected to spend several days with friends in Mooloolaba on our way but it didn't work out that way. We had to head overnight directly to our marina at Manly which is near Brisbane, Australia, because a big storm system was heading north from New South Wales along the coast. We got docked just a few hours before several days of colorful, wet, loud weather hit the coast causing millions in damage. Worst storm in 30 years!!!

The weather here had been dreadfully dry for ages but since we have been here we have seen more lightning than the whole 4+ years we have owned the boat!!!! We have had rain numbering in feet instead of inches!!! Rivers are swelling above flood stage and mosquitos are swarming. We had pea sized hail that sounded like bullets and we were concerned for our solar panels!!

We finally got a chance to take the train into the city and Brisbane is young and bustling. What an attractive downtown with a huge arcade of many streets and shops and street entertainment. We just weren't used to cities and the noise knocked us over! By the end of the day it was sensory overdose....too many lights and sounds. Guess we got used to quiet islands!

Manly is just a short train ride to downtown Brisbane and we visited there several times. "Brissy" is one of the fastest growing cities in the world and very up to date.

Brisbane City, Anzac Square, A Memorial Park

Here we are after having just run for a ferry on a day in Brisbane with the other cruisers friends from Fast Forward and Catimini in the group photo below.

We really covered the whole city. We ate, drank and caught up on our recent passages and future plans.
It was great to see Brisbane and get a bunch of shopping done especially with the good Australian dollar exchange rate now. We had a toned down Thanksgiving on the boat with Thai Chicken and cranberry sauce and missed family, of course.
Now we are on our way sailing south along the coast to Sydney. We expect to anchor each night enjoying the coastal sights unless the weather window is really good and then we will shoot straight through and go the whole 400 miles!! We look forward to Christmas in Sydney and plan to meet friends there and take our time seeing the sights. We are staying on a mooring in Cammeray Marina just outside downtown.
Here in Australia we have a modem like a cell phone with instant internet access and we are really enjoying the First World priviledges again with instant connections!!!

Wishing everyone safe and blessed holidays....

Lynn and Chuck on Cyan

Friday, November 7, 2008

Arrived in Australia

Please join as a subscriber to this blog to be notified when it is updated or add this site to your bookmarks to check it from time to time if you are interested in our further adventures. We don't usually update it enough for it to get annoying!
Or you can just check from time to time.
There is a new page on New Caledonia that's just been posted. Checkhere

We took the Port to Port Rally from Koumac, New Caledonia to Bundaberg, Australia arriving Oct 29. We had a brief stop for 4 days at a wonderful sand bar in the middle of the Coral Sea called Chesterfield Reef with 7 other cruiser friends in the rally.
Koumac was a particularly fun visit. The rally folks organized excursions to working mines, and an abandoned mining village, ancient caves, wine tastings and a pig roast before we left to sail west. Lynn celebrated her birthday on the 16th along with Mike on Kokamo who had the very same birthday, tasting French wines, cheeses and pates. What a tough life!!!

After all the vessels arrived the 4 days of parties began in "Bundy". There were games and prizes and Chuck bid $3 on a nice yellow hat got toad #1 who won the race and we won 2 days and nights at a B&B on the beach and, what's best, 2 days rental car to do shopping for provisioning...yeah!!! He also won the stuffed toad in the picture.

On election day they came to interview us because they were looking for some Americans who were watching the election closely and since we had internet connection, we were. The next day we were in the papers with a nice picture. That was a nice welcome since we'd only been in Australia a week!!! Here is a shot of the paper.
We expect to leave Bundaberg and sail south to Brisbane area about mid month taking in some nice stops along the way. We are heading to Sydney for Christmas. The fireworks on the bridge there on New Years Day is supposed to be spectacular and we have a dock reserved.

More Later.....Chuck and Lynn on CYAN