After visiting Brisbane Airport 16 times, I finally made it in to Brisbane itself on Sunday 11th (yea it's been a while since I updated the 'ol blog). I love it. Absolutely fantastic city, and one that I could definately see myself moving to at some point in my life. The whole place (well, the CBD) was spotlessly clean, and there was a general buzz about the place that made you feel relaxed and included. The city is beautiful too - they've managed to strike the perfect balance between modernisation and traditional buildings, and it's all surrounded by tropical plants. They must have some policy on the locals as well, some kinda attractiveness exchange or something. It's like they bus out all the munters and swap them for good looking people in the surrounding areas. There must be some very ugly suburbs nearby...
Brisbane is the type of place where a simple Englishman can be tempted to spend massive amounts of money without thinking about it too much. You walk into a brissie shop and a 'fog of spending' descends upon you and you suddenly lose all control of your credit card. Well at least I did. So I left Brisbane with two stupidly expensive shirts (you can guess what I just typed instead of shirt) and some CDs. At least the CDs were reasonably priced. I got hold of the Go Team's album (which does sound as bass-less in real life, Daz), plus a couple of others:
- Triple J Home and Hosed: Ripe 'N' Ready
- Benard Fanning (Powderfinger lead singer) - Tea and Sympathy
- Xavier Rudd - Food in the Belly
- Regurgitator - Jingles (the best of)
- Regurgitator - Eduardo and Rodriguez Wage War on T-Wrecks
- Spiderbait - Greatest Hits
On Wednesday 14th I flew up to Cairns with my mum, and met my mamie (who'd flown from Sydney) there for a couple of days in northern Queensland. Since I'd not seen my mum in 18 months, she decided to spoil me and put us up in the Bellevue apartments at Trinity Beach. Man, these things were posh. I had the master bedroom suite, which overlooked the ocean. It had aircon that was independent to the main apartment, which had mixed blessings. First night I was too cold, second I was too hot, then on the final night I managed to get it right. I'm a regular Goldilocks me.
On the Thursday we went up into the rainforest on the Kuranda Scenic Railway [there's some photos on my DeviantArt site] and to the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary [more photos on my DeviantArt site]. The sanctuary was amazing, and I went snap happy with the 'ol Nikon (well you would, wouldn't you?). It was a stupidly hot day though with the temperature around 37 degrees, and the humidity up in the 80s. We left Kuranda and took the SkyRail back to Caravonica (which is near Yorkies Knob [smirk]). Whilst in Kuranda I happened across some of Steve Shepherd's work, and of course I had to indulge and buy another piece. This time the piece I got is in Purple Gidgee, which is a very strong and hard to work timber, that turns purple where the bark meets the wood when exposed to light.
Friday saw us up at 6.30 to catch the coach to Cairns so we could board a catamaran to Michaelmas Cay for a spot of diving and snorelling on the Great Barrier Reef. It was brilliant. Did a bit of scuba diving (though couldn't get the hang of equalising my ears properly - ended up evacuating the mask every time as well!) and loads of snorkelling. Saw some clownfish, which was great, and got to swim with a school of about 200 fish with electric blue along the tops of them. Also managed to burn the crown of my head where the the hair parts, as it was in the sun all day whilst my face was underwater.
On the Saturday I went into Cairns and had a mooch around, before boarding possibly the most turbulent flight ever from Cairns to Brisbane. It was like riding a wooden rollercoaster full of drunk chinese businessmen that was belting along at 500mph. I actually thought the plane was going to disintigrate midair. As it turned out, we were flying through storm clouds. We realised just how powerful this storm was when we were on our way back to Buderim, as the storm had felled trees bloking roads (so mum's wee car saw some off road action), and the power was off for 10 hours. No wonder we almost got whiplash midair!
Sunday was much more sedate, spent by the pool relaxing, and on Monday we braved Sunshine Plaza again for some Christmas shopping. Currently I'm trying to find an iPod nano for Jodie (don't say a word, mister Scott-Langley!).
Am gonna update the DeviantArt photos tomorrow (Monday night in the UK), and will post an update when they're available.
Music of the moment: Spiderbait - Four on the Floor