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In The Nick of Time

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 31 January 2020 | Views [200]

Behind the mask, Sydney Airport

Behind the mask, Sydney Airport

AUSSIE KIDS ARE BACK IN SCHOOL FROM THEIR Xmas/Summer vacation.  The sugarcane, ankle-high when we arrived, is now taller than I.  And the occasional rain showers have become a daily deluge.  We have been in Australia for ten weeks and it’s time to be pushing onward. 


             Sorry, Ladies, but the masks don't help  Sydney Airport

We had booked the cruise from Sydney to Auckland shortly after arriving in Australia.  We didn’t know at the time that we would be escaping just ahead of the Coronavirus scare.  The WHO announced yesterday that Coronavirus is “a global health emergency” without explaining what that means to you and me.  Ten percent of the travelers in Sydney were wearing masks — and not all of them were Asian.  We received an email from Holland America this morning telling everyone not to worry about the virus — and by the way, if you are coming from mainland China, we’re not going to let you onboard!  Talk about mixed messages and forewarning.  We are sailing on the same ship, MS Noordam, that ferried us to Oz from Hawaii.  Surprisingly, the cost for the 14-day cruise is actually less than we would spend traveling for two-weeks on land, making it a bargain if you have the time.  Which we do.


           Deserted Mission Beach

You may have noticed that despite Queensland’s attractive beaches, we haven’t mentioned swimming in the ocean in our posts.  That’s because we haven’t!  We could blame it on the weather or on “Stingers” — this is jellyfish season.  Blue Bottles, or Pacific Man-o-War, can give you an uncomfortable time and if the deadly Box Jellyfish doesn’t take you out permanently, you may wish it had.  But the truth is I am no longer a beach person — and Connie never was one!  Even so, we are both sporting pretty good “farmer tans” from our time out birding and such.  

nn      nn

            "Blue Bottles"                            Box Jellyfish

We will probably be out of touch for the next two weeks but may be able to post some photos and stories from Hobart or one of the New Zealand ports-of-call but don’t be surprised if you don’t see anything for a while.  I promise we’ll catch up once we reach Auckland.

ADDENDUM: It's 15 months later, more than 500,000 Americans have died from Covid-19 and masks DO work! I apologize formthe comments above. It wasn't the first time I've been wrong—it won't be the last.



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