Location: Airlie Beach & Whitsunday Islands
Last Night some of us attempted to sleep under the stars, but it got too cold, and everyone except for Joe went back under. This morning we woke up in the Airlie Beach Marina to a nice breakfast of cereal and toast prepared for us by Frenchie and Mal, the captain and first mate. Once breakfast was cleaned up, we went through a brief safety talk and life jacket fitting session. Then we motored out of the marina and began our journey to the first snorkeling location. Once we arrived at the reef, we were issued a mask, snorkel, and stinger suit and were shuttled to the drop-in point via the banana boat, aka the yellow dingy. As we jumped in the water, we engulfed by marine life. Inquisitive fish swam up to us, and we marveled at the diverse corals and massive clams. After we were all done looking at the gorgeous wildlife, we returned to the boat where Frenchie and Mal had warm drinks and cookies waiting for us. This was our first exposure to Tim Tams, a popular Australian cookie comprised of a chocolate-covered wafer with chocolate filling on the inside. In addition to the Tim Tams, we sipped on some Milo, which is sort of like hot chocolate. We then learned about the Tim Tam Slam. The Tim Tam slam is where you bite off two opposite corners of a Tim Tam and use it as a straw to guzzle up the Milo and saturate the cookie (aka chocolate on chocolate on chocolate). With Tim Tams as fuel, we raised the sails and began another passage. While underway, we were healing at 26.87 deg and making 14 knots! 26.87 degrees might not seem like much, but objects, as well as people, were flying across the cabin (all loose objects and people were promptly secured). Once we reached the anchorage, we had a nice dinner of chicken and potatoes. To close out a fantastic first day aboard, we watched a movie about the Great Barrier Reef and all of the wonders it beholds.
Special thanks to sailor-in- training Berend aka “Dutchie,” aka “The Flying Dutchman” for the video!