Tuesday, March 11, 2014


Until my dying breath I will proclaim that Queensland is the quintessential Australian state, and that Queensland is Australia.  A big reason I feel this way is because of the myriad islands dotting the coast, which stretch untold hundreds of miles to the far north of the country.

We've done a bit of island going, because in many cases it's easy and affordable to get to them.  In other cases, not so much.  Since we can go from our apartment to an island in less than two hours, we have no excuse not to enjoy the tiny land masses of the Sunshine State!

Stradbroke Island
We've been to Straddie before, and unlike last time we got to sleep in a proper bed.  Exactly like the last time, however, it has pissed down rain on us.  I swear that island has its own heinous weather system, as all three times I've been there I've gotten rained on.  It's a beautiful place:

You just need to be prepared for some sucky weather.

We went for a friends birthday weekend.

So when the weather got too foul we entertained ourselves indoors with booze.  So the crap weather wasn't a total loss!

There are 'roos on Straddie, which I think is kind of rare for an island.

I wonder how they keep their population from becoming horribly inbred?  I guess we could just ask Alabama (ziiiiiiiing!).

We did some swimming in the ocean.

So much fun riding the waves!
Unsuccessfully tried fishing...from the shore (this is not the first unsuccessful fishing attempt).

And watched a surf competition, while Martin creepily took pictures of the competitors in bikinis.

Coochiemudlo Island
Coochie is where we took Martin's parents for the first week of their stay here over Christmas.  But the family vacation wasn't the first time we'd been to The Cooch.

Our Australian friend BJ's parents have a house on Coochie.  A house with a denim couch!

We went over Labour Day long weekend and hung out with the owners of this fine couch, BJ's parents.  This is his dad:

And those are the fish heads we used to try and catch crabs...in fetching footwear!

Alas we didn't catch any crabs we could keep, as only male crabs can be taken/eaten.  The lady crabs carry the future of the species in their wombs (do crabs even have wombs?) so they had to be put back.

I can't find what the circumference of the island is, but Martin kayaked all the way around it with his big muscles.  While I relaxed on a floating noodle (funoodle!) and enjoyed a few of these:

Because we had a few couples staying we wanted to spread the task of feeding eight mouths equally.  I was assigned a lunch, so I thought long and hard about a tasty, portable dish that could preferably be eaten at the beach.  And you know what I came up with?

Taco in a bag!

Surprisingly nobody had heard of this fine delicacy before, and there were 3 other Americans in the bunch.  Tacos in a bag were a staple at my high school basketball and football games.  Give everybody a crushed up mini bag of Doritos, scoop in some taco meat and let everybody add their own fixings like lettuce, salsa, etc.

Pro: Super easy clean up.  Once the bag contents have been consumed, into the trash it goes!  Also, delish.

Con: In Australia, mini bags of Doritos have about one fourth the amount of Doritos in them as American ones.  Had I known so few chips were in each bag I would've budgeted 2 per person.  I guess this explains a thing or two about America...

Taco in a bag was a huge hit, and I'm chuffed for coming up with such an easy, tasty, convenient, fun lunch.  Go forth, my people, and spread the gospel of the taco [in a bag]!

Final Coochie comment: Go to their official website.  Trust me, you won't regret it.

King Island
Can an island still be called an island if it's accessible by foot?  Indeed it can.

Those trees are on King Island, which you can walk to during low tide.  You'll still get wet up to mid-calf, and also tear your feet up in the process.  Man, that sand was the rockiest, most painful sand I have walked on here!  Usually it's soft and fine enough to polish silver in (for reals).

We watched some dudes kite surfing, which looks like the most fun sport ever!

I told Martin I wanted to take lessons, which he promptly shot down.  He said that you have to be a really good surfer in order to kite surf.  I've never even tried surfing, and know if I ever do I will fail at it epically, so...kite surfing is probably not for me.

But what does Martin know?!  I might be a professional level kite surfer, which I'd never know if I never try.

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