Visiting Botany Bay for the Annual NPS Facilitators Conference

I have just returned from the annual National Prescribing Service facilitator conference which was held down at Brighton le Sands on Botany Bay. The conference was held over two days and included a number of workshops, informative talks and lots of networking. On the Friday I managed to go downtown to do a little shopping and also visit the Sydney international boat show on Darling Harbour.

Business in Brisbane

I have just returned from a couple of days in Brisbane. I spent a day doing some training with the Pharmacy Guild of Australia (for Home Medicines Review Facilitation) and a day with the National Prescribing Service learning about the latest topic ‘Selective Use of Antibiotics’. Back in Mackay it continues to rain (unlike in Brisbane where the continue to have the worst drought on record). I have however managed to restore our wedding path to its former glory. At work I have been concentrating on getting the new website up and running whilst I wait for the next round of visiting to start. Lisa is now on school holidays. I celebrate my birthday in a couple of days!

Trying out the Hydrophone

The last few weeks have been pretty quiet with the temperature getting down to about 5C at night. I am in the final stages of finishing our latest website. I have been out a number of times on the kayak with my latest toy – a hydrophone,  although all I have managed to hear so far is the tug boat engines at the port of hay point. We hope to get some decent recordings of the local dolphins and maybe even the Dugongs.

The Rain continues in Mackay

It is June and it is still managing to rain here in Mackay. The workmen have just finished fixing the road in to Mackay and two days later the pot holes are reappearing. This week I have just about completely rebuilt this site to take full advantage of cascading style sheets. I have also managed to fix the problem of the menu disappearing under the Google Maps maps.

Riding on the Mighty Tully River

In April 2007 we headed up to Tully in North Queensland. We stayed a couple of nights at the Treehouse hostel in Mission Beach before joining a trip down the mighty Tully river in a whitewater raft. The Tully is a spectacular explosion of bubbling white water in a spectacular setting – thoroughly recommended!

Tully River White Water Rafting Photographs

Lundy Island Photographs

Lundy island is a beautiful granite island rising out of the Bristol channel approximately 30 kilometres off the North Devon coast. The island is rich in wildlife including several rare birds and seals as well as history – many of the islands distinctive buildings are in the process of being restored by the landmark trust. The island can be reached on the MS Oldenberg which sails from either Ilfracombe or Bideford depending on the tide. Crossing the Bideford Bar can certainly be quite an experience when the sea is a llittle rough! I visited the island on April Fools Day in 2006 whilst working in Barnstaple.

Lundy Island Photographs

Lundy Island Map

Life at the Beach: Sarina Beach Photographs

I arrived by kayak at Sarina Beach in the last few days of 2004. I planned to stay for a few days camping out the front of the Surf Club, made some friends and ended up staying for a few months. That however is another story 🙂

If you are ever in the area then head down to the surf club and pass on my regards to Chief.

Sarina Beach Map

Percy Island Photographs

In July 2005 I set out from Sarina Beach and headed out to the wonderful Middle Percy Island in a small sailing boat called Blue Moon with my friend Luke Benes. After a stop over at the beautiful Curlew Island we arrived at Middle Percy Island on the 16th of July, bringing some gratefuly received supplies for the islands caretakers – a young couple with a dog named ‘Zee’ We stayed on the island for the next two weeks – this was much longer than was originally planned due to the gale force winds that lasted all most a week. I had a wonderful time exploring the island and sleeping in the tree house down near the beach. I spent hours in the A-Frame looking at all of the signs that had been left by passing boats – some from as far away as Scotland, Norway and America. The Homestead on the island was in a sorry state of affairs, as was the historic ship ‘Islander’ which had been build on the island. Percy Island has an amazing history and is definately worth a visit if you are lucky enough to ever be passing that way. Flinders certainly thought so when he stopped at Percy Island.

Middle Percy Island Photographs

Trip Map

My Boating Accident

The following Photographs were taken in the days after my accident at Sarina Beach near Mackay.

In February 2005 I was staying at Sarina Beach down under in Queensland. I had spent the afternoon drinking down at Mackay Harbour with some friends. On returning to Sarina Beach I decided to join the boys on a midnight boat trip. We all piled into the tinny and headed out into the darkness. Unfortunately I decided to sit on the Bow of the boat wearing my headtorch with my feet dangling over the front. Due to being intoxicated I was pretty relaxed and was probably not holding on very tightly.

Heading out across the moonlit inlet we suddenly turned (for one reason or another) and hit a wave. I went flying out of the front of the boat, smacking my head on the boat, before having my knee, wrist and armpit mangled by the outboards propellor. The boat continued on before realising I had disappeared. Luckily my headtorch continued to shine and I was promptly pulled back in to the boat. Numbed with shock and too much Bunderberg rum, I thought I was fine, not aware of the blood pouring out from my knee, arm and armpit. We hastily headed back to shore and managed to get me a lift down to Sarina where I was stitched up by the on call doctor.

A couple of days later a large tiger shark was caught in the area, which also has the occasional visiting crocodile. It took a couple of months to get back in to the swing of things and I have never lived the incident down. Everyone in Sarina Beach remembers the day when the Pome was run over by the boat and I do enjoy telling the story of my fight with the ‘propadile’ and showing off my scars. I was extremely lucky to escape with relatively minor injuries; a timely reminder that boating and alcohol definately don’t mix.

Kayak Trip Photographs

The following photographs were taken during my 2004 solo kayaking trip down the east coast of Australia. Over the three months of October, November and December I made my way down the coast from Cairns, visiting as many beaches and islands as possible.