Man, was that bed comfortable. Seriously, one of the most comfortable beds we have slept in. So comfortable that we slept 10.5 hours last night. Boy, oh boy. The only downside was that we started our day a little later than desired which led to us to not exactly accomplishing what Lynn was hoping to.
We pulled ourselves out of bed at around 9:30 a.m. and threw on yesterday’s clothes for a morning walk up the Red Arrow Track, a walking path through the nearby rainforest with views overlooking downtown Cairns recommended by our Airbnb host. Thankfully there was an IGA along the way which allowed us to pick up some seriously delicious yogurts with passion fruit seeds in it. With yogurts in hand we headed on our way towards the track, delighting when an older man chuckled to himself and said to us, “Walking it off while you put it in, eh?” This is now our new motto. You may do with it what you wish.
The sidewalk took us up into a cute square at the center of town and on to the Botanical Gardens where the track was said to start. After a quick bit of confusion we found ourselves working our way up many steps into the native rainforest, huffing and puffing the whole way (it seems we need more cardio in our routine). Not once did we see a cassowary, a bird noted on the sign at the beginning of the trek, but we did see a number of other guinea hen and turkey-like birds along with a lot of bamboo and rainforest vines. We made it roughly ¼ of the track before deciding we didn’t have enough time to make it the rest of the way in order to meet our flight. So, instead we turned around and took the slightly quicker (due to the downhill) route back to our Airbnb.
After 40 minutes spent packing, showering, and weighing the pros and cons of keeping a beach towel over the blanket we stole from Emirates we hopped in a taxi and took off for a very expensive 10 minute taxi ride to the airport. This experience has taught us that weekend taxi prices are double weekday prices. Oh well. We checked in and then proceeded through security before grabbing lunch at Hungry Jack’s, Burger King’s brother in Australia, and also the cheapest thing at the airport. While we waited for our slightly delayed flight we started catching up on blog posts which then continued into the entirety of our flight to Melbourne. And we got them done! You are welcome. Doug also did an awesome job of putting together our menu for the week, ensuring maximum reusability.
We were greeted in Melbourne at its newest “low-cost terminal” where construction still seems to be underway since we walked through 4 or 5 shipping containers before entering the terminal itself. But, this did give us a chance to sample the 55 degree weather here. Brrr.
After collecting our bags, we found RedSpot, our car rental agency for the week and collected our car, a Hyundai i20. We have yet to name it, but I’m sure we’ll come up with one quickly. Doug took to the wheel for our first hour on the road to Geelong where we would start The Great Ocean road drive. He quickly learned a few things about driving on the left side of the road. First, which is a given, you must now shift with you left hand, but more surprisingly you must turn on and off your blinker with your right hand. Secondly, you have to really think hard when making turns. Am I supposed to turn into the nearest lane or the furthest? And lastly – this one being Australia’s own fault – the dotted white center line does not mean it’s a two lane road. No, it means you could be driving into on-coming traffic if you attempt to make it a two lane road. Australia has not figured out how to use different colors for their lane markings.
We did have a few misdirections on our way out to Geelong due to Google Maps being slow, but made it to the city at roughly 7:30 p.m. Instead of heading straight to our next Airbnb, we swung by the grocery store to get some dinner and breakfast items as well as some other staples for the week. It took a bit longer than expected because we again, couldn’t figure out where they hide the peanut butter, nor could we find a styrofoam cooler and instead settled for a cool bag.
With our goodies in tow we took off for our Airbnb, where Doug made a delicious dinner of chicken fajitas and avocado salad while Lynn started getting things arranged for the onslaught of blog posts to hit the web. Get ready world – we are back!
Daily Walking Mileage: 7.02
- We are slightly amused by the differing license plate tag lines associated with the two parts of Australia we have thus far visited. In Queensland, where Cairns was, we saw: Sunshine State and The Smart State. In Victoria, it’s a bit more concerning with: Stay Alert, Stay Alive. Though in all fairness, there is also one that says: The Place To Be, but we have yet to see it.
- “Chicken cutlets” in Australia are actually chicken thighs with bones in them. Doug worked hard to get those bones out.