Weekend in Manly & Whale Beach

Friday was the hottest day in Sydney for years, reaching a high of 45 degrees, I made my way to Circular Quay & within a few minutes I was sitting on a wonderful ferry that was taking me across the Sydney Harbour to Manly (30 minute ferry ride) to spend the weekend with my cousins in Whale Beach, Northern most point of Sydney Harbour. It was a beautiful day & I certainly felt so content & at “home” when I was riding along the ocean. Amazing what certain things can do for our soul. Passing the Sydney Bridge, taking photos at every opportunity I could, I battled to take in everything I was seeing. It was great seeing such iconic buildings from the water side, such as the Sydney Opera House.

Cruising past us were yachts, recreational boats & various types of  other water transport. I soon realised at how busy this water way was, in fact similar to a highway, that was for sure! Passed a kayak-er, who very daringly was paddling in and around the harbour. Something I certainly wouldn’t do given the fact that a ferry or speed boat may not see you paddling & ride over you!!

Arrived in at Manly, a beautiful sea side town. I browsed around & then waited for my cousin to arrive and take me through to their home in Whale Beach. Winding along the peninsula and coastal road, my soul was immediately made at home when I smelt & saw the sea. So very different to what I was used to at home, yet at the same time very much the same to home! Wild & rugged cliff faces curved around the coastline dropping into the side of the ocean, leaving it to the imagination as to what lies beneath the surface! I was getting very excited for my weekend ahead!

After opening up a beer & relaxing on the lawn at my cousins house, it was time to put my feet in the water. We all duly walked down to Palm Beach . The sea calm & flat like glass. Temperature about 22 degrees, heavenly!  We splashed around, jumped off high rocks, laughed & made many great memories together seeing as it was about 10 years since we last saw each other.

Saturday was Avalon Market day, taking place on one day once a year, the entire town comes to a stand still & four roads are closed for the stalls, which were setting up the night before. Fantastic day browsing around all the stalls and buying odds & ends that were once off items, making them unique gifts to family back home.

After spending the entire day just about wondering around the market we made our way home for some delicious dinner, steak & chips.

Sunday I booked a day of scuba diving at Shelly Beach, Manly . I started my day at 09h00. After preparing my equipment we were finally ready to set off down to Shelly Beach, where upon arrival I was shocked to see how many divers were there already. Clearly a very popular spot to go diving! I was very excited & nervous at the same as I hadn’t been diving in a couple of months. However I managed to set up my equipment successfully  with no hassles or hiccups. GoPro in hand I was ready to hit the water. What a great sight it was indeed. I felt so free and happy under the water, enjoying every minute of it & really trying to absorb all the sights and environment that was surrounding me.

My photos are not the best, however I just had to put them up to share them with you all. So do excuse the quality! I finally got to see a few Wobbegongs all of which were hiding under the rocks & so well camouflaged. Caught these fascinating creatures on video. (Australian video will follow once I return home). On the fish species side of things I saw Crimson Banded Wrasse, Striped Catfish, Blue Grouper, Leather Jackets, Maori Wrasse, Goat Fish and so much more. My first dive went to 12m. Visibility was about 5-7m all round. Because of the incoming low tide, my second dive was a bit shallower, going to a maximum depth of 9m, but still there was so much to see. Really beautiful indeed.

Diving in Australia was a great experience, however it definitely made me more aware of how grateful I must be of where I live in Cape Town, being able to snorkel every day & to see the life I do beneath the surface is certainly very special. I constantly tell myself how lucky I am to live 5 minutes

away from such fantastic waters and marine life.

I spent Monday with my cousins at Palm Beach, browsing the shops and exploring all the sights and sounds it has to offer like a real tourist, before making my way back to Bowral on Tuesday morning!

Fantastic weekend, I certainly loved every minute of it.

 

Cheers Fi 🙂

Day at Tinbinbella

I spent the better part of my day wondering around the beautiful walk ways of Tinbinbella in Canberra, taking in the majestic space that surrounded me the thick bush and immense wildlife. Although I must admit I was not able to see all of the wildlife it has to offer purely because of great camouflage on the animals part, of perhaps maybe my poor animal finding eye sight, I am not sure!

However we were able to see Koalas in the Eucalyptus tree, sleeping whilst another one was quietly eating. After doing a loop walk called the Koala path , I quickly spotted a Wallaby eating food outs the trays provided by the park, who simply stared at me, the food clearly too good to give a miss. The bird life here is truly amazing and to think they are all wild. Cockatoo’s are a plenty breaking off the bark of trees & eating loads of flowers, leaves and pretty much anything else they think they can eat they will!

 

The Gippsland Water Dragon is a beautiful lizzard which we spotted sun baking on the banks of a little pond. Such a beautiful lizzard, gives our one’s back home some competition both in colour and size.

Taking a walk around various ponds not only did we hear the calls of Kookaburras along with various other bird species, we were lucky enough to keep our eyes focused on what was a stream of bubbles going around one of the ponds. Up popped a Platypus! I was delighted, despite not knowing much about these prehistoric looking creatures my instant reaction was not only to take a glimpse of this animal as he/she surfaced but to snap an image off on my camera at the same time. A success it was! To add to our growing list of spotted animals we saw two Pelicans, once again I was in absolute awe and amazement of how beautiful these birds truly are.

Lunch was calling and we stopped by a shady bench which was in the echo of a valley and had our picnic which we had assembled before departing this morning. Filling our tummy’s with great food and our souls with the silence yet fullness of the nature that surrounded us I was now in heaven! Being surrounded by nature is absolute bliss for me.

Lastly while heading home we came across a Red Belly Black Snake carefully maneuvering across the busy road, trying to avoid contact with a car’s tyre, it successfully crossed the road where it disappeared into the grasses. Magnificent sight and great way to end the trip home.

I truly enjoyed wondering around, spotting and keeping an eye open for the unexpected to pop up. A day spent with nature is a day not forgotten.

Going Down Under, but wont be returning as a Sheila!!

I left Cape Town on 14 November at 14:30 after being delayed by 30 minutes without an explanation as to what the cause was. I boarded my flight to Johannesburg along with a couple of hundred of people all packed in and herded like cattle. I was seated next to two seemingly young & sweet ladies, however I should have realised that you never can judge someone by their external appearance. They must have been what I can only describe as the two World’s Bitchiest girls Earth could have produced, from demanding a seat change next to the fire exit to trying to pay for in flight food with Euros which is not accepted. All of this because they are flight attendants for an European Airline. I bit my tongue for the 2 hour flight hoping I was not going to be put in  similar situation for my Australian flight to Sydney. I breathed a sigh of relief when I checked in, passing all security checks without a glitch! 11 and half hours later I have successfully landed in Sydney & am now in Bowral.

The Chicken egg is the Key (continued)

Yes, its true my last blog was in fact a riddle, a message hidden in plain sight.

I am dyslexic not to mention, I have a terrible grasp on spelling. In this strange battle of backward sentences that mostly have been incorrectly spelt, I used to try improve my skills and have a little fun  by  passing  hidden messages that anyone could read and apart from thinking that I had totally lost the plot or had become deeply philosophical my hidden message would be safe from prying eyes. Only the intended recipient who understood my warped mind would see the true meaning. I have used a multitude of different keys and clues to show there was in fact a hidden message or double meaning.

The things we do to amuse ourselves at times!!!!

I have learnt the hard way to read between the lines at times, not to mention even though it is incredibly tough for me to write a blog or even something as simple as text people. The written language is in fact a fun and immensely powerful tool.

The Riddle:
The age old question what came first the chicken or the egg…..
With regards to evolution this is a easy question indeed hence I made it the key. Chickens , in fact all birds for that matter evolved from reptiles. Reptiles lay eggs so it is clear that the egg came before the chicken.
If the egg is the key and its the third word in the sentence (THE CHICKEN EGG IS THE KEY) that should mean that it is possible, it is the amount of letters in the first word of each sentence will give you the keywords in order (making  up a complete sentence) . Wow, I hope this is clear.
If you apply this you should land up with…If.u.can.read.this.u.should.leave.me.a.comment.

Congratulations Petra you cracked it. Well done indeed.
For all our sakes I wont do this again as it has been a trying few days.
I apply this type of thinking to all my challenges in life. If you start with a good positive mindset then make it a challenge. I find that what seems like an  impossible task can be made much more achievable and pleasant. Who knows it could even be fun!

Dan

The Chicken egg is the Key

Life is short if you waste moments.
U will never be able to appreciate the extraordinary if you can’t embrace the mundane.
Only if you can truly believe it is impossible is it worth the effort.
What if you read that which is immediately apparent to only be left wanting.
Give up on this existential rat race.
If u don’t stand for something you will fall for everything.
We should all make the effort to effect change.
We leave no stone unturned in the quests ahead.
Never give up on me as I never will.
A question is not a dirty word or a personal slight.
Pure focus and a bit of understanding will relinquish us from the shackles of inevitable self-destruction.
If comment is necessary let it at least be constructive.

Dan

Cryptozoology: The Study of “Hidden” Animals

Why? Because Science.

cryptozoology chupacabra

What whiffles through the tulgey wood? What serpents glide the ocean deep? Is there a monster in your loch? Is the creature leaving unnaturally large offerings in your pussy’s litter tray a phantom cat? According to cryptozoologists, it very well may be!

That or your husband got blind drunk again…

The Study of Hidden Animals

beware of bigfoot

The field of cryptozoology is a fascinating one because it involves the not-so scientific study of large animals that are so elusive, only a couple of rednecks have reported seeing them. Each country in the world has its fair share of folklore and myths, yet some of these legends transcend idle chatter around the dinner table… some become the lifelong pursuits of people whose ambition it is to provide real evidence supporting them.

There are many organisations around the world that are dedicated to the collection of evidence, anecdotes and hundred dollar bills for the study of…

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