Food Travel

Cell phone coverage & crocodiles

Tropical Paradise?

In case it had escaped you, I’m an extrovert. Contact with people is important to me & I love nothing better than sharing my fun experiences with friends, even if they can’t be with me. (translates as: how much fun I’m having in the searing heat & sunshine while you’re freezing back in wintry NZ)
Basically that means I need to stay connected at all times – Facebook, Twitter, phone & texts being my 4 mainstays.
When flying solo to Mission Beach, Nth Queensland recently for a family wedding therefore, I sought Gordon’s advice on what I should do to ensure my connect-ability – I wanted to be able to ring home everyday to chat since he couldn’t come with.
When we travel we like to slip a SIM card from that country, into our phones to avoid the high rates charged for international roaming. But usually I’m with Gordon, & as someone who revels in all things teccy, he salivates at working out the best rates, deals etc. I usually just hand over my device as soon as we step into the arrivals lounge, order a flat white, & wait patiently for the return of said device ‘all up & running’.
So on arrival at Brisbane Airport & confident I knew what to do, I surveyed the various deals on offer. I’m a bargain hunter, I like nothing better than a great deal so when a certain flashy ‘mobile provider’ screamed at me offering Starter SIM Packs for $35 down from $50 they had me – hook, line & sinker.
What the sign omitted to tell me however was that ‘this particular provider’ at times has extremely poor coverage and given where I was going, this very flaw would be the reason I nearly got eaten by a salt water crocodile…….

Sisterly Love

The day the croc came into the picture dawned like every other in that tropical paradise.With no cell phone reception at the resort & determined to chat with Gordon after a 4 day absence, we  headed down the leafy forest track to the golden sands in the hope of finding coverage away from the cliffs.

Knowing our penchant for beach walking, another guest, the day before, had asked if we’d seen the warnings about salt water crocs & to take care. Such was my desire to speak to my beloved, all thoughts of man eaters (I’m from NZ people, the worst things we worry about are skinned knees) left my head. I waded further out into the water until -Houston we had contact!

Do you ever get the feeling sometimes that you’re being watched? That happened to me, right there, thigh deep in water. The croc warnings came back to me vividly as I realised we had wandered to the far end of the beach where the mangroves were. Slightly panicked I called to Pauline & Geoff to see if they were concerned about the threat – even though it remained unseen at this stage.

Both agreed that maybe being in the water wasn’t such a good idea. As we scanned the beach for slide marks all courage left us & we mutually picked up the pace & headed pretty smartly back. With a more than uncooperative leg I only have one speed & it’s not fast. As the other two briskly pulled away from me I voiced my dilemma at keeping up with them. It was then I realised the depth of our sisterly love when Pauline threw back over her shoulder “ That’s good, you can keep him occupied it will gives us more time to get away.”

Mission Beach

Despite the indigenous inhabitants I can only say, if you are up in North Queensland, take the opportunity to visit- the scenery is breathtaking and the location unforgettable.As Mission Beach  is placed midway between two main towns, from Brisbane I flew into Townsville ( & out of Cairns). I then met up with family and carpooled, however I know some guests came by bus and others by overnight train which stopped at  a nearby township. (They LOVED the train journey) A lunch stop at the Waterfront Restaurant & Bar, Hinchinbrook Harbour for us was delicious, atmosphere breathtaking, food superb!
I’ve never been involved in a destination wedding before – I’d highly recommend it. We spent 5 days together and by the time the wedding took place the guests all knew each other and already felt like family, even though we came from all across the globe.
Mission Beach boasts loads of fun if you want it. We took a boat trip to nearby Dunk Island and was amazed to see the devastation still obvious from Cyclone Yasi. The young ones in our group went white water rafting for a day and came back bouncing with adrenaline. We saw others para sailing, sky diving and kayaking.  If we’d had time I would have loved to visit Charleys Chocolate Factory -Australia’s only Cocoa Tree to Chocolate bar Experience. The small seaside township was buzzing with lovely opportunities for shopping at great prices. I always love to come away with local ware and this time collected a gorgeous pair of red coral ear rings.

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