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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Sept. 21 - Oct. 4, 2011 - Mooloolaba - Tangalooma - Brisbane and Visits From Friends

We were excited to return to Mooloolaba and its upbeat trendy atmosphere. There is something magical about this place that just feels good. It doesn't hurt that the beaches are world-class and the eateries and shopping are good here. Scott and Muriel Spencer had driven up from Brisbane for a short holiday in Mooloolaba at the same time. We dined with them at the Surf Club and at Thai Seasons and then one day they drove us up to beautiful Noosa where we spent a few hours on the beach. They left a few days later and then on Sept. 28th, Jan and Russell Meggitt came to stay with us. We had arranged for them to sail with us back down to Brisbane.
Jan's sister Kerri Scholmm lives in nearby Buderim. Kerri and her husband Erwin joined us that first night for happy hour on Destiny and then Thai Seasons for dinner. Kerri and Jan are like a vaudeville act when together, and Erwin is full of life. Fortunately as in-laws the four of them get along famously making it a great evening of laughter and friendship. Jan and I met Kerri the next two mornings for an invigorating walk along the foreshore, followed by coffee at a local cafe and then either shopping or heading to the beach, or both. Frank and Russell made several trips to the hardware store and to the Mooloolaba Surf Club bar. We always knew where to find those two. Poor Erwin had to work. I'm sure is liver appreciated that. On October 1, we sailed back to Moreton Island, eager to share it with Jan and Russell.
As we entered the bay we joined the whales that we had been observing from shore moving along the coastline all week. This is the time of year they migrate into warmer waters with their young. Moreton Bay is not very deep between Moololaba and Moreton Island, so whale spotting was easy. Getting photos was not. They put on a real show stopper performance for us tossing their babies up into the air and pirouetting up out of the water, frolicking like children all through the bay. This must be a popular playground for them, it sure was a treat for us.
We arrived at Tangalooma with plenty of daylight to head to shore. Jan and I packed up books to read and beach paraphernalia. Frank and Russell went on their own hike to find a cool beer. That evening the anchorage became extremely rocky, and by the next morning winds had shifted around from the southwest bringing thunderheads and gray skies at mid morning. This is not good. The bay was chopping up such that we realized we had to get the heck out of there. Smaller craft were bobbing and tossing about violently. We weighed anchor and beat into the bay. It was not a good ride into Brisbane. The water churned, the grey sky turned black as thunderheads built into a storm that slammed us all the way to Brisbane River. Fortunately this is not Jan and Russell's first rodeo. They are power yacht owners and no strangers to this kind of boating. We happily snugged up to the berth at Dockside and breathed a huge sigh of relief that nothing and no-one was broken. 

Monday, October 3, we awoke leisurely, then strolled down to Southbank. Kerri's daughter, Inga lives in Brisbane. Jan phoned her, found that she was free for lunch so we invited her to join us at Frank's favorite pub The Plough Inn. After lunch Jan and I took a walk leaving the boys to their cold beer and Bloke talk. We walked through the lovely gardens and exhibits around Southbank then past the Maritime Museum where Jessica Watson's Pink Lady is now on permanent outdoor display. We eventually ended up back at Dockside and settled aboard thinking about what to do for dinner. They guys didn't show for a long while. It was dark when they returned so dinner was a casual affair.
Tuesday, October 4, we awoke at 4:35 AM to see Russell and Jan off. Frank stayed awake after that but I returned to bed until 8:00. We then tidied up and I mentioned going for a long walk, but Frank said that he had hit his toe the previous night while he and Russell were out and about visiting on another boat. It was very swollen and looked as though he had broken it this time. He could not possibly get a shoe on it so he taped it up and he took it easy for the rest of the day.

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