The crew of Maia have taken a few side-trips on other people's boats to some of the islands. On Wednesday, our friends Ralph and Jen on El Misty were motoring around on a calm day because they needed to charge their batteries and offered to take us over to Daydream Island. We checked out the resort, had a walk on the trail and went for a snorckle in Lovers Bay. Like so many of the island resorts this one is top-notch. As such, it has its obligatory art work:
Dave, Jen and Craig smile as Ralph demonstrates how to best enjoy the statuary.
The resort has the best mini-golf course we have ever seen. The theme is different places in Australia. Jen clued us in that Australians don't have "shrimp on the barbie", they call shrimp prawns, and it isn't common to bbq them.
On Friday we piled on to our friend Warren's 40 foot catamaran Odyssey to head out to an enormous party on Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island.
Mind you, there are NO facilities on Whitsunday, it is a national park with pristine beaches. Well, for this one, they brought out big tents, a huge sound system for the band, 4-5 kitchen set ups, all on a few trucks they brought in by barge. About 300 boats gathered for a real Australian style bash. We had an excellent time swimming and walking on the beach.
This was a close call with the first croc we've seen.
On our sail home we starting racing a large tug boat. Skipper Warren pulled up the big spinnaker and we sailed away from them - no dinosaur bones needed.
The big spinnaker with the boxing kangaroo is a favorite. We've heard that this is the logo for a very cheap fluffy white bread, like Wonder, called "Tip Top". This particular one came from a boat called Australia II, which won the America's cup. Unfortunately, a few minutes after this photo was taken, the spinnaker split and now needs to be repaired.
We have been having a great time in Airlie Beach. The weather is warm, so we have plenty of opportunities for swimming. The boat is safely at anchor, which keeps expenses low, and we are surrounded by friends. Our friends Dan and Jenny inspired us to stay up late and visit all of the nightclubs in town. Good news for Darrin, I don't think your lifetime ban is on the books, a decade can bring a lot of forgiving and forgetting. Unfortunately, we also do not see any tourist trimarans here, so yours must by plying other waters now.
The Shire Council for Airlie is trying to keep up with the resorts, so they added this enhancement to intimidate the men in the public urinals. Dan and Craig demonstrate
Here's the scoop on our exit plan. We took a big step towards home: we have decided to leave Maia with a broker in MacKay. We will be there sometime in early September, or just about 10 days from now. Dave has bought his ticket home, flying on September 11, so we figure we should be situated about that time. Evvy has a friend, Sonya, who is coming to visit about a week later. Then we'll be heading home in late September. Rather than rush home we're looking at making some stops on the way home in Sydney, New Caledonia, and Honolulu - all places where we have friends.