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Photos: North Island

NEW ZEALAND | Saturday, 15 Feb 2020 | Photo Gallery

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Auckland Forecast: Hardly Sunny

NEW ZEALAND | Friday, 14 Feb 2020 | Views [124]

BARELY A DAY HAS PASSED AND THE CRUISE seems a distant memory.  We hopped on the airport bus, picked up our shiny black Suzuki Swift and went in search of Sunny Holiday House, only about 10K from the harbor.  We waited out the three hours ... Read more >

Cruise Recap: Don't Mess With Mother Nature!

NEW ZEALAND | Thursday, 13 Feb 2020 | Views [143]

NEW ZEALAND IS SURELY ONE OF GOD’S BETTER EFFORTS.  While the country is always beautiful, if the sun is shining New Zealand can be freakin’ spectacular.  When a 20 th Century edition of Lonely Planet from our first visit ... Read more >

A Rare Visit to Stewart Island on Waitangi Day

NEW ZEALAND | Friday, 7 Feb 2020 | Views [140]

A FRIEND COMPLAINED AFTER TAKING THE SAME NOORDAM CRUISE (in reverse) that he didn’t get to see enough of New Zealand.  Lack of time is my major gripe with cruises in general — that and the fact that ports, like railroad stations, seldom ... Read more >

Sydney to Tassie

AUSTRALIA | Monday, 3 Feb 2020 | Views [139]

THIRTY-KNOT WINDS WHIPPED SPUME from the waves — White Horses JRR Tolkein called them — and forced Noordam into a port-side list.  Luckily, the swells were moderate so the rockin’ and rollin’ was minimal as we cruised ... Read more >

Photos: Cruising from Sydney to Auckland

NEW ZEALAND | Saturday, 1 Feb 2020 | Photo Gallery

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In The Nick of Time

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 31 Jan 2020 | Views [185]

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 ... Read more >

The Joke's On Us!

AUSTRALIA | Monday, 27 Jan 2020 | Views [133]

I EXPECTED MISSION BEACH TO BE HOPPING on this Australia Day weekend, something like Seaside Heights, NJ on the July 4 th .  The town isn’t just quiet, it’s dead.  And we like it!  You see, we are mostly passing time until ... Read more >

Australia — Ya Gotta Love It, Mate!

AUSTRALIA | Sunday, 26 Jan 2020 | Views [176]

ON THIS AUSTRALIA DAY I WANTED TO SHARE a story we heard about how some Aussie towns got their names.  A white “explorer” asked an Aborigine “What do you call this place?” The answer — in the local language, of course ... Read more >

Platypus — Right Time, Right Place

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 24 Jan 2020 | Views [127]

AUSTRALIA IS KNOWN FOR ITS STRANGE ANIMALS and none is more strange than the platypus.  It appears to be an evolutionary afterthought, a hodgepodge made from spare parts — the bill of a duck, the tail of a beaver and the feet of an otter.... Read more >

Atherton Tablelands: Yungaburra

AUSTRALIA | Thursday, 23 Jan 2020 | Views [134]

CHAMBERS WILDLIFE RAINFOREST LODGE certainly lives up to its name.  It is in the forest smack-dab inside Crater Lakes National Park on the Atherton Tablelands, and, yes, it rains.  Our cabin is smaller than some of other places we’ve ... Read more >


AUSTRALIA | Saturday, 18 Jan 2020 | Views [351]

FOLKS SAY, “IT’S NOT THE HEAT, IT’S THE HUMIDITY.”  Cooktown has both heat and humidity— in abundance! — and a bit of rain to keep things interesting.  But not much else, at least not the birds we were seeking.... Read more >

Port Douglas and Daintree

AUSTRALIA | Monday, 13 Jan 2020 | Views [136]

PORT DOUGLAS IS PROBABLY MY FAVORITE TOWN in Queensland.  From the cute main street to the glitzy marina and tropical Four Mile Beach, it is nearly perfect.  And Lychee Tree Holiday Apartments is a wonderful place to stay, thanks to hosts, ... Read more >

Cassowary Country

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 10 Jan 2020 | Views [136]

WHILE VICTORIA AND NSW ARE IN FLAMES, it’s the beginning of “The Wet” here in northern Queensland.  Granted, the lakes and billabongs are still low and the waterfalls are mere trickles compared to what they will be later in the ... Read more >

Safely in Cairns

AUSTRALIA | Monday, 6 Jan 2020 | Views [294]

THE BRISBANE AIRPORT SEEMED FILLED WITH Queensland Fire and Rescue troops on their way to Victoria where the bushfires are out of control, just like Victoria's firefighters recently helped with Queensland's blazes.  The seasonal “Wet”... Read more >

Photos: Queensland — Cairns and Around

AUSTRALIA | Wednesday, 1 Jan 2020 | Photo Gallery

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There Will Be A Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight

AUSTRALIA | Tuesday, 31 Dec 2019 | Views [137]

WE ARE ENDING THE YEAR IN THE BRISBANE at the Balmoral Queenslander B&B.  For a straight guy, Brian has done a wonderful job of decorating this traditional “Queenslander.”  We are 20 minutes from the airport and within walking ... Read more >

Connie's Koala

AUSTRALIA | Monday, 30 Dec 2019 | Views [118]

LAKE SAMPSONVALE REMINDED US OF FLORIDA’S Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge yesterday morning but instead of crossing the Sanibel Island Bridge we had to walk through the Sampsonvale Cemetery.  No ghosts, though.  Silhouettes ... Read more >

Red-Necked Avocets of Lake Dyer

AUSTRALIA | Saturday, 21 Dec 2019 | Views [117]

AVOCETS ARE SOME OF MY FAVORITE BIRDS.  I have taken so many photos of American avocets that Connie has placed a moratorium on any more.   But Red-necked Avocets are a different story and today I took dozens of shots of hundreds of avocets, ... Read more >

Room and Board — and Bird

AUSTRALIA | Thursday, 19 Dec 2019 | Views [149]

ON OUR FIRST TRIP TO AUSTRALIA BACK IN ’04 we drove around New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia for 3 months in an old Ford Falcon and camped in a tent.  And we loved it.  In 2012 we graduated to a series of Toyota campervans ... Read more >

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