Thursday 9th July
We’ve taken the ferry from the mainland to Magnetic Island, where it is absolutely beautiful! As always! Most of our day was spent on Horseshoe Bay, sunbathing on this amazing stretch of sand, the sea gently lapping at our feet, and seals occasionally poking their heads out of the water just in front of us. Idyllic. What could be better than lying there, listening to the ITV podcast of the Tour de France, Radio 4’s Drama of the Week, then followed by a huge amount of Led Zeppelin, roasting in the sizzling sun?? How can I ever be expected to work again?? I sleep all night, and then snooze all day on the beach! I’m in no state to do any form of employment!
Our hostel is a very very chilled affair, looking directly onto the Arcadia Beach. Lovely hosts, great rooms (our bed is probably the biggest bed I’ve ever seen!) and nice guests (older than your usual backpackers). We’ve cooked last night’s and tonight’s dinner on the barbie which is built into an old boat, and nobody has stolen any of my beer! A result!
Within 5 minutes walk we have a colony of rock wallabies. They’re like massively enormous rats with huge back legs and tiny pathetic arms! But very nice! And a couple with babies in their front pouches. Great to see them in the wild, and another first for me. Also, on our walk up to the fortress area we saw koala bears! Three of them, in the wild! Although, they don’t seem to do much apart from cling on to the trees while asleep. A bit like myself really.
Tomorrow me and Josh are going to have a couple of hours sea-kayaking, and hopefully meet some more of the marine wild life – we’ve seen “something” playing in the water the last couple of days, it’s either, seals, turtles or dugongs. Or sharks.
Friday 10th July
Yet another beautiful day, so after bacon and mushroom sandwiches, we headed first to Florence Beach where me and Josh had the very entertaining spectacle of watching Charlotte going snorkelling. It wasn’t the actual snorkelling, but the preparation that had us in stitches, as she donned her flippers and headed into the sea like Coco the Clown on acid! We were on the floor laughing and desperately hoping that she’d trip over (because we’re very supportive!)
In the afternoon we moved on to Horseshoe Bay, our favourite, where me and Josh had a very pleasant time kayaking, although to be fair, Charlotte’s video showed that we were pretty crap at it! Timing was not our forté!
And, then, in the evening, it was the big one!!!!! “The World Famous Toad Races”!!! Very very difficult to describe this event, but I’ll try. Imagine a holiday park, a bit like the worst Butlins you’ve ever been to, but in the sun and on a beautiful island. Imagine lots of drunken Aussies at this park. Imagine an old one legged man on a Mobility Scooter (let’s call him Mo-Sco Pete) who owns lots of toads. Imagine a huge crowd of these drunken Aussies firstly bidding to “own” these toads for the race, and Mo-Sco Pete being the ringmaster. Remembering also that these toads give off a toxin which has a similar effect on people to LSD, and that Mo-Sco Pete has been licking these toads! My god! What a bizarre happening! And then the toads are caged in the centre of a large circle on the floor, and when the cage is released, the first one out of the circle wins, and the owner wins £100! We’ve never seen anything like it! This could only be Australian!! Completely mental!