Thursday, December 3, 2009

Recent Adventures

So, I've been keeping myself busy of late, hence the lack of updates. My most exciting bit of news is that I got the part of Olive in "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" with the Phoenix Theatre Ensemble, which is based in Beenleigh (just South of Brisbane). They did an excellent production of "The Last 5 Years" which Pat and I went to see, so I feel like I'm in good hands. It's a great cast with a lovely director and I'm doing what I love the most, which is singing with a group of people who also love to sing!

In other news, those of you who follow Pat's blog will know we went to the Moreton Bay Research Station on Stradbroke Island to do some volunteer work for their once-a-year Open Day. We made some new friends (aquatic and human!) and had a great time on the beautiful little island.

Pelicans on the beach!

The beach itself. The texture of the sand is due to millions of crab and clam holes! It was very cool up close.

Sunset as seen from the outdoor bar. Yes, an outdoor bar. I would go back just for that, honestly. You come in through the front door and there's an open room with one wall (where the drinks are) and then it just opens out into a field with a beautiful view.

I've also been volunteering at the Australian Cavy Sanctuary in Cashmere, just North of Brisbane. I get my cuddly little animal fix and I get to feel like I'm helping out as well. There are so many little guinea pigs! I know you don't need a hundred pictures of guinea pigs, so here is just one:

There were also two cats and a dog on the property, not to mention this little guy, who showed up around feeding time (hard to resist those fruits and veggies) and shamelessly entered one of the cages for a snack:

A possum during the day! Well, that's Australia for you.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Yesterday we went to the Botanical Gardens at the bottom of Mt. Coot-tha. There was so much to see and it was a gorgeous day. Needless to say, I took a lot of pictures. Below is a small selection of them. I apologize for not knowing the names of most of the plants.

Patrick with some gigantic flowers.

An ibis by the water.

There were so many ducks bobbing for underwater treats! I caught one in the act.

There was a little fenced off section where the ducks could rest in the shade.

A pomegranate tree! They all sorts of fruit trees, including quince, carob beans and olives.

Pat had a close call, but managed to escape from the man-eating plant. Phew!

Some sort of gigantic aloe or cactus. Apparently no one has ever figured why the giant tree/flower grows in the middle, especially since the plant dies from the exhaustion of growing it.

A view from a little bridge in the rainforest section.

More strange and beautiful plants!

The view of Brisbane from the top of Mt. Coot-tha. It was a nice hike up and we got there just before sunset, which was unfortunately blocked by trees. Still a great view!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Interesting Places

I thought it was time for a little update, since it's been a few weeks! I've got some nice pictures from places I've been, so here we go.

This is in Morayfield, which is about an hour North of Brisbane by train. Patrick and I went to visit my Auntie Rose's Australian family. The property is about 40 acres, complete with chickens ("chooks"), sheep, 5 dogs and a mini-lake. Apparently wallabies lived in a small forested area on the land, but we didn't see any. It was a gorgeous day and they were all super-nice people, lots of them couples our age, so we had a great time.

This is Jazz, the oldest of the dogs, the "queen bee", enjoying a rest/dry off in the sunlight after a tiring swim.

This is a lovely little area I walk past when I come home from Greenslopes (which is right by Annerley, where we live). There was a water dragon, but he'd already jumped in by the time I got my camera out.

This is on one of the lakes at University of Queensland, where the water is covered in algae. There are so many birds there I'm going to have to devote an entire post to them. Also, I need to remember to bring bread so we can experience the feeding frenzy. All in good time.

A sailboarder enjoying the insanely windy day at Surfer's Paradise beach. There was sand in everything, pretty much from the get-go. It was a great day, though. Wave-jumping was ridiculous fun. It took a few hours to get there by public transport, but I really would like to go back, perhaps spend a weekend. It reminded me quite a bit of Honolulu.

It's been raining a lot, here, though I'm sure not as much as Vancouver. We've had some pretty epic thunder/lightning-storms which are fun to just sit on the porch and snuggle up with some tea and watch. The hot days are hot and humid, but it's what I expected.

That's all for now. Stay tuned!

P.S. You can make the pictures bigger just by clicking on them! :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

My favourite day here so far was definitely me and Pat's anniversary (October 10th). We went to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in Fig Tree Pocket. Not only do they have over 100 koalas (which you can cuddle for a fee - and we totally did as you can tell by my user pic), but there were all sorts of other wild and crazy critters! Here are just a few!

I have no idea what this bird is called. But he's so poofy!

Mama and baby koala!

Sleepy little koala... most of them are like this, just sleeping in the trees, content and fat.

There was a huge fenced field filled with kangaroos, wallabies and emus. The marsupials were very friendly and you could pet them and feed them the special kangaroo chow they sold at the little cafe. The emus ... you kinda want to steer clear of the birds that are taller than you, with their beady eyes... not to mention the stories I've heard of them chasing people. 

Pat petting a wallaby

a mama wallaby and her joey!

Pat feeding a friendly kangaroo.

He was a cool 'roo, very chill.

I like this picture very much, if I do say so myself!

Aw, a rainbow lorikeet! Pretty, no?

So many kangaroos!

So many lorikeets!

Aw, tired little Tasmanian devils.

Goodnight, little koala, even if it is only the middle of the afternoon!

Saturday, October 24, 2009


So, I've been in Brisbane for 20 days! I had better start keeping a blog or something. 

It's beautiful and sunny here, pretty much every day. I've been spending my days out exploring and looking for a job, enjoying the scenery and the weather (and wearing lots of sunscreen).  Our house is very cute and surprisingly cool for having no AC. We have 2 fans so that's keeping us comfortable. The temperature's been very agreeable; I don't think it's gone over 30 degrees since I've been here. 

The busses are air-conditioned! I like the transit system here - you can just get a card and fill it up with money and the scan that on and off on whatever bus/train/catamaran you take. They call it "touching on & off". The transit system here is great, except for how infrequent everything is. Luckily, for any place you need to go, there are at least 4 - 5 ways to get there, so it doesn't always take forever. I'm starting to find my way around pretty well. There are so many suburbs, but I don't always need to take a map with me now.

I've seen plenty of wildlife - possums here and there, oodles of geckos (they crawl on the windows and hunt moths, it's really fun to watch!), magpies and ibises and lots and lots of ants. Of course, we went to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, which you might have read about on Pat's blog. I have lots of pictures and videos from there, so I'll dedicate my next post to that. 

Alright, see you on the other side!