Travelogue: October 2007 Archives

Our last day was a bit of a nothing day.

We got up and got ready, packed everything up, paid the bill, and moved our stuff to the games room.

Headed down to Humpty Mick's for a long big breakfast, then came back and played some pool in the games room.

Irises at the airport

Around 11:30am they took us to the airport. For a 3pm flight. (!!) Even though the dude made two separate other trips to the airport that we could have come along with. Oh well. We watched two other flights come and go.

Qantas Dash 8 taking off from Lord Howe Island

Apparently at least one of them was to Sydney. Even though the booking dude had said the day before that our one was the first Sydney flight. sigh. After finally checking in, we went for a walk down to the lagoon.

And then it was onto the plane and home. It was rainy and cloudy so the takeoff wasn't very exciting.

Lord Howe Island from the air

Pretty clouds over the Tasman Sea

And we came straight in from the south on the main runway so the landing was even less exciting.

Botany Bay

Then a mission to get to my parents place. Walked straight onto a 400, but *just* missed the train at Rockdale, so a half hour wait. When we'd been there twenty-five minutes, they announced our train was leaving from the other platform, so it was up and over. Then that train got terminated at Hurstville. So it took an hour and a half to do what should have been a half hour trip.

Dinner was a nice roast beef. Showed the parents the photos on the laptop. Then it was home. Except "going home" from my parents which usually takes fifteen minutes, took three hours. Still doesn't really feel like home though.....

This morning we decided to have breakfast at Humpty Mick's - bacon and eggs yummmmm.

Had a meandering morning, wandering down to the Environmental Tours mob to go on a glass-bottom boat tour. They took us to a couple of the "holes" in the lagoon. The dude fed some fish at one point which caused somewhat of a frenzy. When we go out further we got to go snorkelling with lots and lots of fish, and lots of very pretty coral. Well worth doing.

Glass bottom boat tour

Fish feeding frenzy

Came back and picked up our bbq chook for lunch.

Had a bit of a rest. We were going to go out snorkelling again at Ned's Beach, but I was not feeling like getting cold and wet, so we decided to just wade in and feed the fish. Got some pretty cool photos of them.

Feeding the fish at Ned's Beach - those Kingfish are enormous!

Feeding the fish at Ned's Beach

We ran into Sue and Keith again and we all wandered up the beach to see the sooty terns. So much fun those little birds.

Agro Sooty Tern

As we were wandering back I saw a sooty tern hobbling up the beach looking not too healthy. I went over to it and it didn't fly away, so I picked it up. It was trailing its right wing and was quite weak. Decided we couldn't leave it there to starve to death, so decided to take it back to civilisation to see if someone could take care of it. Part way up the road we found a couple in their ute, who turned out to be locals, and they said they knew where it could be taken, and said they'd take it for me. So hope it'll be all right. Or if not, it could at least be put down quickly.

At this point I have to mention Stu's pun .. he said the dude I gave the Sooty Tern to probably used it to make sausages - he took a tern for the wurst .. get it?? ;)

Mt Gower and Mt Lidgbird in the setting sun

Went to have a look at the sunset, but there were too many clouds, so it was back to watch the mutton birds come in. Lots of fun. Got to touch a couple of them. So soft!

Mutton bird

Yet another meal at Humpty Mick's - this time the Jaques Del Mer pizza, with a great big salad. Was all very delicious.

And so ends another day.

Oh, one tragic thing about today - the arrival of the A380 in Sydney for its first commercial flight for Singapore Airlines. This is one really sucky thing about living in Canberra - not getting to see this sort of thing. Not that I could have seen it even if I had been living in Sydney, being off the mainland and all. They're doing daily flights from Monday, by which time I'll have gone home - doh!

Today was another mission to torture Stu ...

First we made our morning pilgrimage to Humpty Mick's for coffee.

Then we got ready and headed up to Malabar. It was a tough (hot) as I remembered it. But the view at the top was the whole point of going, and it didn't disappoint.

View of Lord Howe Island from Malabar

Had some morning tea there, next a nesting Sooty Tern, which we wouldn't have even known was there had it not squawked at us.

Sooty Tern in front of the Admiralty Islands

Then headed across the top to Kim's lookout where we had lunch.

Lord Howe Island from Kim's Lookout

Finally started down the hill and back to civilisation.

View over Old Settlement Beach

Had a bit of a break and did a load of washing.

After the rest we biked over to Old Settlement Beach to go snorkelling. There is a deep gouge in the bay where coral grows and fish congregate. These cute little black fish were curious and came up and nibble on our fingers. There were tonnes of other awesome fish. We also saw numerous butterfly? lion? fish, two stingrays, and probably the highlight - a huge sea turtle. It was seriously as big as my body. Stu saw it first and we swam behind it for a while. Exceedingly cool. After I started getting numb fingers we headed back.

For dinner we decided to go to Garden Court up the hill. We had sizzling pepper beef and satay chicken and nasi goreng (to keep the rabbits out) and it was all delicious. Oh yeah, the entire caraffe of wine..! The waitress was the same one from the Coral Cafe at the museum the other day. Pretty funny, but she was lovely.

Obligatory Blogography t-shirt shot :)

The dude that took us back here took us down to Ned's Beach to see the mutton birds all over the road, so I got out and touched one, very cool :) Came back thinking we might get to see House on Imparja (they mix channel 9 and 10 - outback television), but they were showing "The Farmer Wants a Wife".. oh well. Saw some of the New Inventors though.

So after brekky we headed down to Humpty Mick's for a coffee and to try and decide what to do today. Which was somewhere between wanting to *do* something and wanting to *sit*. Which proved to be frustrating for both of us. We ended up doing more sitting than doing.

The view we had at Humpty Mick's - not bad hey? :)

Eventually we headed off to the island museum which was very interesting.

Ansett Flying Boat

They had an internet kiosk there for $2 for twenty minutes which wasn't too bad, but it was very slow, especially for cia mail. We had lunch at the Coral Cafe.

Came back here and did some more nothing. Well Stu did. I went down to Ned's beach to photograph the Sooty Terns which were nesting. Well nesting is exaggerating it a bit. They just lay their eggs on the ground. And chirp agitatedly at you when you come near. Very cool. Took an awful lot of photos of them.

Sooty Tern on an egg

So close I could see myself reflected in its eye!

Next we wandered down to the lagoon and dodged some raindrops to go out snorkelling. Completely spectacular. The coral was a little dull in the bit of the lagoon we went to, but we saw plenty of amazing fish.
We stayed out for nearly two hours and only came in when my fingers started to go numb from the cold. I'd like to go out on one of the cruises that go out to the outer reef where the coral is more spectacular.

Then had another go at getting my card-reading cd burner working. It's an Apacer Steno, and is a great idea in principle - a stand-alone cd burner with inbuilt 6-in-1 card reader. Except that it doesn't read two out of the three brands of memory cards I have. Not particularly useful. Maybe that was why it was returned to Ted's and why I ended up with it second-hand. blah. stoopid thing.

So off to dinner - this time at the bowling club for their fish night. We sat with Sue and Keith, who we kept seeing - first on the plane, then outside Thompson's Store, then at dinner last night. So that was quite pleasant.

And so ends another day .. must be about bed time :)

Well woke up and it was all cloudy, so lay in bed for another hour or two.

Eventually we got up and had breakfast, then went down to Humpty Mick's for a coffee. Then we wandered up towards Old Settlement Beach and had a look at the Catalina crash site, and said hello to all the cows.

Catalina engine on Lord Howe Island

Wandered down to the beach and decided we wanted to come back to do some snorkelling later. Then went up to a bit of a headland which has a nice view of the lagoon and a little park area.

Flowers by the lagoon

Went on a mission to Joy's Store to gather supplies and wandered back to our room to have lunch.

You cycle everywhere on Lord Howe Island

Then it was on to the base of Mt Lidgbird to do the Goathouse walk.

Via a nice view of the lagoon..

Lord Howe Island

Oh. My. Goodness.

It was very hard work. We got very hot. And sweaty. Took about two hours of intense and not so intense climbing, some of it with ropes.

Cool looking tree roots

Ropes up the side of the cliff

The view from the top was pretty impressive. Although Stu didn't go to the Goathouse itself as it was literally on the side of a cliff. Took a whole stack of photos.

View from the Goathouse on Lord Howe Island

Ropes on the side of Mt Lidgbird

Then headed back down again. On the way down we got some cool photos of some woodhens. One of them was happy to scratch around us, letting us take lots of photos.

Lord Howe Island Woodhen

Just when we thought it was all over, we still had a half hour bike ride back :( I actually stopped on the way back to take some sunset photos.

Sunset over the lagoon

Sunset over the lagoon

Then it was off to dinner, once again at Humpty Mick's. We still haven't been anywhere else :) I had a vegie lasagna (I was having veggie cravings) and Stu had salt and pepper squid. We also had a couple of beers each. It was all very yummy. Then back here to crash.

So our day started *very* early. We were up at 5am for a 7am flight - ouch!

Stu waiting in front of our plane

We caught a little Dash 8 100. The plane wasn't full, and was a bit late because they'd decided to use a different plane. We were in the second back row (eight of nine). So the flight was relatively unevenful. But when we came into land we circumnavigated the island anticlockwise. And we were on the right side of the plane. I really really should have swapped sides and taken the unoccupied seat on the other side of the plane. I didn't. I was stupid. Bumheadfull. So that was very upsetting. Can't believe I didn't do it. *sigh*

So we got picked up by a minivan from Blue Lagoon and had a mini tour of the island. Our room is very nice. It's quite basic, but it's relatively modern and spacious.

Our room at the Blue Lagoon

We had a look through the island information and then went for a walk down to the lagoon.

Lord Howe Island postcard image

Walking around some of the rocks we found a little puddle of water with some baby fish and crabs in it. There were some catfish-looking fish, and some cute little green fish about 4cm long.

Mystery fish

On the way back we got some lunch - toasted sandwiches from Humpty Mick's. After lunch we went on a mission to find our bikes. In the grounds of the resort we saw a Lord Howe Island Woodhen!!! Too cool! It was just scratching around under the palms. Then the bike dude came and we hired a couple of bikes.

First order of business was a trip to Ned's beach to go snorkelling and feed the fish. There were plenty of sand mullet, but heaps of bigger fish too. It was amazing to swim with them. We also swam over some of the reefs to see other tropical fish. After feeding and touching the fish, we went for a walk down the beach and found plenty of sooty terns nesting with their eggs on the ground. Entirely too cool.

Then it was back here for a shower and an afternoon siesta, before heading out to watch the sunset (it was a bit too cloudy) and then watch the mutton birds come into land. Absolutely crazy.

Next to find some dinner. We first tried Garden Court at Lorhiti, but it wasn't open Sundays, so ended up getting a pizza from Humpty Mick's. It was a really good pizza (Leiutenant Henry) but I've got salad/veggie cravings now..

After dinner we went to Ned's Beach to see the mutton birds come into land. While brilliant in the air, they're not to good at landings. They kinda skid to a halt then skidaddle off into the bush. Quite amusing to watch.

Mutton bird

My blackberry is a brick here. There is no mobile phone coverage. There are no phones in our rooms. Apparently there is an internet cafe somewhere. We really are cut off from the world.. woot!

Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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