It’s been a busy couple of months. I had a job approach me that ticked all my boxes of experiences I wanted but did not have, and that made me uncomfortable. I very nearly sent a ‘no thanks’ email, but something stopped me. Something made me unable to hit send. So now I had a job lined up, and an end date to farm life. This end date (as they usually do), made me decide to make the most of my remaining time in Queensland.
I decided to drive north to Cairns, stopping along the way at a few towns I’d heard of but never visited, and stopping in to check out the dairy farm where our dairy cows had been purchased from. Beautiful green rolling hills and happy, healthy, well behaved dairy cows. It was lovely.
I then rolled further north and hopped on a dive liveaboard for four nights. The boat went out to the northern, less touched areas of the Great Barrier Reef – the ribbon reefs. I lucked out and found a diver similar to myself onboard. It’s always a dangerous roll of the dice to go on a liveaboard boat without knowing anyone. You could get stuck with a strange dive buddy or room mate that makes your trip less pleasant. So the trip was amazing, I saw some beautiful reef, goofed off underwater with my dive buddy, and even had my teeth cleaned by cleaner shrimp (see: Jacques from Finding Nemo). Some new and exciting experiences.
Back on land I then travelled to Townsville and did two days of diving there. One on the SS Yongala wreck (a shipwreck from 1911 that is beautifully grown in and has a lot of history), and the MOUA (Museum of Underwater Art, recently erected to grow reef on). Seeing how nature claims human structures underwater will never cease to amaze me.
Back to the farm for some final days to collect my things and pack the car, I remembered how much I truely feel at peace in the country and with cows, so decided to stretch my stay and extra day…
That night, torrential rain started, that didn’t stop for 24 hours.
I was cut off. I couldn’t leave.
We ended up having to wait another 24 hours for the creek to go down (with regular inspections. It started off the full depth of my leg 12 hours after the rain had stopped, going down to 30cm another 10 hours later when I decided to drive through it.
So, sometimes you make plans.
Sometimes you change your plans.
Sometimes external forces change your plans for you.
Rather than stressing, I rang around to the dive shop and accommodation I’d booked and asked them if they’d mind cancelling. They said yes no worries.
This happened again later in the journey south when a dive was postponed due to bad weather. I rang the accommodation I’d booked in that area for the night, despite it already being 2:30pm, and asked if they’d mind postponing it a night. I wasn’t hoping for much, but figured it was worth asking the question. They said yes, no worries.
How good is that! (Shout out to Heritage Guesthouse, South West Rocks)
This then allowed me to spend more time exploring the 3.5 hrs of coastline between my two locations, rather than shooting down the highway. This included exploring Yamba, which I wouldn’t have got to otherwise. So good.
So two lessons here:
Always ask the question. The worst they can say is no.
Adventure. Explore. Roll with plans changing. Make the most of what happens rather than being annoyed at changes.
Who knows what you’ll discover along the way….