This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

2009 Travels August 1 to 5

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SATURDAY 1 AUGUST TO WEDNESDAY 5 AUGUST    FORREST BEACH

SATURDAY was a quiet and relaxing day.

I walked to the shops for the paper. Read that. We walked on the beach. I made salads for tea.

With the very windy weather easing off, the sea was not quite as rough as when we arrived here.

I was now noticing regular “tinny” boat traffic, from Palm Island in the distance, to the beach here. The boats came into the shallows, the indigenous occupants – one or more – would stick a bit of an anchor into the sand, or tie a rope around a chunk of breeze block lying on the sand. Clearly, those had been put there for the purpose. They would then disappear up to the hotel. After some time, they would re-appear, carrying boxes of beer and sometimes cartons of who knew what. They would then motor off back into the distance, across to the island.

I had been under the impression that Palm Island was “dry”, but maybe I was mistaken. The island communities had a lot of issues, the place had a dubious reputation and was sometimes compared to Doomadgee and similar.

The sea was still quite rough, at times, but that mostly did not deter the regular traffic. We counted four separate boats arrive today. Good extra business for the hotel!

Palm Islands from Forrest Beach

SUNDAY: was another windy day.

After an early lunch, we drove across to Macknade Mill, to bowls.

This was such a unique setting for a bowls club!

Bowls Club at Macknade Mill

I kept being distracted by the cane trains clunking by, not very far away at all, and by watching the shunting activity of these at the mill. The mill itself was not too noisy – just kind of faded into the background. We have bowled in some out of the way and unusual places, but this one really took the award!

I played alright. John was not really happy with his game. Nothing new there!

Tea was sausages, fries, egg.

MONDAY: another windy day.

We relaxed at camp; it is that sort of laid back place where sitting about doing not much is perfectly respectable, even expected.

Went for a walk along the beach. Our beach walks were usually about 5kms, sometimes more, sometimes a bit less. But a decent exercise. Our preference was becoming to walk to the south, because that way we did not go past the more frequented (slightly) of the village foreshore. But either way, there were lovely long sandy expanses.

Yesterday, the pseudo-schooling lady across the way told us that she had been hired by management to clean the ablutions block, once a day. Since we had been here, the cleaning of same had been erratic. It didn’t happen at all on weekends, and not every week day either. So, to have someone supposed to do it every day, should be an improvement. Nothing short of a major refurbishment would change the tired, worn out and broken things – chipped cement, broken tiles and the like – but it would be an improvement to know the place was cleaner, at least.

She started today, and did a good job. It was not possible to get off the ingrained staining and wear, from time and the tropics, but we could be more confident now, that the surfaces were reasonably hygienic.

Garlic prawns for tea.

TUESDAY: was still windy. Guess it was that time of year on the north east coast.

Another day of relaxing: reading, sewing, computer use, beach walk. Wished it could go on longer, and become our way of life again….

Outlook from the front of our site – the beach was not far away….

Had an email from the former boss in my main career. He had been working on Groote Island, in the NT, doing community safety audits. Well, that was something new for him. He had really fetched up in some unusual places since his “retirement”, most of them to do with indigenous education and welfare, in some way, or environmental issues.

Tea was pasta with chili, smoked cheese, garlic crumbs. It was different using smoked cheese, which the original recipe called for, instead of the tasty cheese I usually resorted to. Yummy.

WEDNESDAY: a fine day with a bit less wind.

John went to bowls in the afternoon.

I walked on the beach, did my usual leisure activities. Started playing the Share Market Game, run by the ASX, twice a year. So that provided some mental exercise for the day.

Tea was salads and tinned red salmon.

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