Posted by: The Starfish Dancer | November 2, 2014

Adventures on the Other Side of the World #17

We started our morning shopping the little stalls in the Townsville Sunday Market.

We started our morning shopping the little stalls in the Townsville Sunday Market.

It is very counterintuitive for me to think of the North as hot, but this is what I have definitely been experiencing here in Townsville. Today was another day that hit 31C, and I’m even starting to get a little colour. Not red, yet, thank goodness, and I’m vigilant with my sunscreen and shade time to hopefully keep that at bay anyway, but a little tan that takes me from pasty white to plain white. I might actually come home looking like I’ve been on a little holiday. Not much of course – I’ve never tanned well – but a little is still nice.

I started the morning a bit early; I was dreaming when I heard Gerry ask his son if he was up, and woke thinking it was me who was needing to be up and at ’em. It wasn’t, but I got up and sort of at ’em anyway, by which I mean I made myself a coffee and read on the veranda for a while, including a nice rock in the hammock, while Liz, Gerry and their youngest son did running training and their daughter slept in.  I also took the opportunity to try Milo, as I was told my Australian experience wouldn’t be complete without this malted barley drink.  I like Milo MUCH better than vegemite, and will likely have some for breakfast tomorrow.

After coffee and breakfast (which also included eggs made on the barbecue, which I’d never even thought of doing) and getting dressed for the day, Liz and I headed to the Sunday market.

The Magoos live not far from this high outcrop of rock called Castle Hill, and you can see for ages from the lookouts.  Too hot for me to attempt following the goat trail to the top, though!

The Magoos live not far from this high outcrop of rock called Castle Hill, and you can see for ages from the lookouts. Too hot for me to attempt following the goat trail to the top, though!

It was very cool – lots of different fruits and veggies, plus breads, sweets, jewellery, baby clothes, smoothies, and even wine!  I bought a bottle for tonight after dinner, along with a gift for my yet-to-be-born nephew or niece.  Very excited to give that little souvenir! Liz picked up some fresh produce, including some different types of bananas, which I had for lunch. One is very like the apple banana I had in Hawaii; they call it a sugar banana, and I like it very, very much. We also met her friend Carly and Carly’s daughter for coffee, where I tried a “flat white” which is like a latte, but with micro bubbles so it is more dense.

After coffee, we stopped in Mary Who?, a lovely little bookstore. They didn’t have a copy of the Australian book I was specifically after, but I did buy two, so I have some new books for my collection as well as reading material not on my kindle for the long voyage home.  Then we took our purchases and came back to the house, with a quick stop at Woolworth’s where I bought some Australian candy to try (Jaffers taste very much like Terry’s Chocolate Oranges, but with a candy shell, in case you were wondering) and then up Castle Hill to take in the view.

Driving to the beach, we passed a woman working on a ribbon routine outside in front of the ocean. How cool is that?

Driving to the beach, we passed a woman working on a ribbon routine outside in front of the ocean. How cool is that?

Gerry had very awesomely gone back to Billabong to get my wombat photo, so I don’t have to go home without it. I’ll have quite the collection for my walls – two koalas and one wombat photo, to go with the dolphin photo I have as well!

Since it was once again much hotter than I am used to, I spent some of the afternoon in the pool, then a little time outside it reading, getting dry, and getting a little colour.  I sprayed on lots of sunscreen before and after the pool; the sun is very hot here, and the hole in the ozone may have a little something to do with that.  I really, really do not want to sunburn like I did on my two cruises. Then I changed back into real clothes and went to the Pallarenda Beach with Liz and Gerry. Another place whose name rhymes with my own! I should start a collection.

They went for a short run.  I waded into the warm water over a very young beach (lots of shells, sand very gritty with them and not yet worn soft), then sat in the warm sand and finished my book on my kindle.  It was by an Australian author and good and charming but also sad. I’ve started another book now, but light and fluffy this time to give my heart a break. It’s called “The Night Guest” and is by Fiona McFarlane, and I’d seen it in a store in Melbourne and bought it on my kindle, as the  book was nominated for the Miles Franklin Literary Award and looked very good.

Liz and Gerry run down the beach on this beautiful Sunday afternoon.

Liz and Gerry run down the beach on this beautiful Sunday afternoon.

After the beach, we went home to shower off the sand, then the four Magoos and I went out to dinner. We were going to eat at a place called the Pier, but the reviews for it have not been good, so we went to Jupiter’s, the Casino in Townsville, and ate in one of the restaurants. It was very hard to pick what to have, since everything sounded delicious, but since they specialize in kobe beef, I decided on a steak with red wine sauce, and as my side I chose a beet root salad. It was an excellent choice. I think everyone was happy with their meals.  Dinner was great, as was the conversation. I think the highlight for the Magoos, though, might have been the laugh they got at my expense (though not meanly) because I thought the diesel trucks with the snorkels for the exhaust actually drove underwater.  They say snorkel, after all, and I really thought it could be a snorkel car, where you could drive into the ocean a little ways and watch the fish swim by your window.  It does seem ridiculous now that I know it isn’t what the snorkel is for, but at the time, it seemed perfectly reasonable and achievable.  I’ll have to try and get a picture to demonstrate my silliness.

Now the day is over, the market wine cracked, and everyone settled in bed save me. So I’ll wrap things up so I can go to bed, get a good sleep, and have all the energy in the world for tomorrow’s adventures on Magnetic Island with Liz.  Looking forward to it!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: