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I'm going on holidays [message #587289] Thu, 13 June 2013 22:08 Go to next message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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From Melbourne by rented 4WD with the missus in shotgun and rug-rats in the back
=> Swan Hill (ye olde colonial pioneer settlement & paddle steamers)
=> Burra
(into the desert)
=> Woomera (former missile base and infamous detention centre for illegal immigrants)
=> Coober Pedy (Opal mines)
=> Uluru (Ayres Rock) and Kata Tjuta (The Olgas)
=> Kings Canyon
=> Alice Springs
=> Tenant Creek
(into the tropical Top End)
=> Katherine (visit family)
=> Litchfield Park
=> Kakadu
=> Darwin
=> Fly home

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Re: I'm going on holidays [message #587290 is a reply to message #587289] Thu, 13 June 2013 22:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
BlackSwan
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I have visited a few of those places.

How far from one end to the other?
How many days to complete the transit?

Be sure to walk to the top of Ayers Rock.
Does Alice Springs have more the 1 traffic signal now?

Re: I'm going on holidays [message #587295 is a reply to message #587290] Fri, 14 June 2013 00:24 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
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We're taking 22 days for the trip. It's about 4000km

I did the same road trip as far as Alice Springs 20 years ago. I climbed Uluru then, but won't do it this time.

Climbing Uluru is now considered culturally insensitive. It is considered a sacred act by the local Aboriginal tribe. Tourists climbing the rock is kind of like drinking in a cathedral or yomping through a Buddhist temple in your boots - although they're not great analogies.

Ownership of the national park area was handed back to indigenous tribes by the Australian government in 1985 but they attached a condition: that the rock remain open to climbing. The owners would dearly love to ban it but they can't. Australians generally understand the sensitivities, although it doesn't stop very many from climbing. International tourists generally have no idea because it is in the best interests of tourist operators to keep it a secret.

I'll count the signals in Alice, but I don't expect much change. I had a friend at Uni who came from Alice; he used to claim that he could give directions to his house: "Turn right on Stuart Highway in Port Augusta, right again at the next traffic light, and we're 3rd on the left". The joke works better if you know where Port Augusta is: 2 days drive from Alice.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #587299 is a reply to message #587289] Fri, 14 June 2013 01:06 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Watson
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The total of my knowledge of Australia comes from reading Nevil Shute's A Town Like Alice, and one week in Sydney (on contract to Oracle). That was enough, though: I wanted to live there. I was actually offered a job (by Oracle) with relocation, but when we looked into into it I found that I could import the wife, cats, and dogs, but not the parrots: no way were they getting past the quarantine rules. Infuriating. People move country with babies all the time - pets are a different matter. I can't understand it. Babies can carry terrible diseases.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #587399 is a reply to message #587299] Fri, 14 June 2013 09:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
BlackSwan
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>Climbing Uluru is now considered culturally insensitive.
I did not know this.
It certainly is one IMPRESSIVE rock!
It was 1988 when we visited Australia & were in Sydney for the big Bicentennial celebration.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #587470 is a reply to message #587299] Sat, 15 June 2013 07:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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I picked up a Shute ombibus (3 books) a couple of years ago at the local school fair. For a Pom he really nailed Queenslanders' language and manner with Joe Harmon - he's obviously got a good ear for language. I never saw the feature movie but Australian TV made a mini-series in 1981. It used the book for a screenplay virtually unchanged, so there was none of that disappointment you get when they mangle the book. Only problem was they got city boy Bryan Brown (remember Tom Cruise's Aussie mate in Cocktail?) to play Joe and he made a complete hash of the dialogue by talking too fast. Mini-series would have gone another episode if he spoke like a real Queenslander.

On the Beach and No Highway were the other books in the volume. Not as good as Alice but still worth a read. On The Beach is very black and surreal.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #587476 is a reply to message #587470] Sat, 15 June 2013 14:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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I prefer Bryan Brown's F/X Murder by Illusion over Cocktail. On a second thought, I don't like Cocktail at all.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588210 is a reply to message #587476] Sun, 23 June 2013 14:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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Sorry for stealing your topic, but I didn't want to open a new one just to send greetings from Venice, Italy Smile
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588211 is a reply to message #588210] Sun, 23 June 2013 14:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Watson
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"Venice, Italy" makes you sound like an American! Why do they so often say things like "London, England" and "Paris, France". Surely we can assume that Venice is Italy, unless otherwise stated?

I love Venice. Both times I've been there I spent two days wandering around enjoying the absence of cars.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588219 is a reply to message #588211] Sun, 23 June 2013 23:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Barbara Boehmer
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John Watson wrote on Sun, 23 June 2013 12:53
"Venice, Italy" makes you sound like an American! Why do they so often say things like "London, England" and "Paris, France". Surely we can assume that Venice is Italy, unless otherwise stated?


I attended Venice High School in Venice, Los Angeles, California, United States of America. The area was originally intended to mimic the canals of Venice, Italy, but it has changed a lot since then. The area is more famous for its ocean front walk and the variety of people that congregate there. Around here, if you say Venice, I think most people generally assume you mean the one in California, not Italy.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venice,_Los_Angeles

Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588337 is a reply to message #588211] Tue, 25 June 2013 03:47 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gazzag
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John,

It appears to me that a lot of cities in the US were named after their European counterparts by the early European settlers. Hence Paris, France differentiates from Paris, Texas and so on..... Smile

-g
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588399 is a reply to message #588337] Tue, 25 June 2013 10:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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I'm back*! I've already been there so nothing much changed. However, this time I visited some places I missed last time (Torcello, Burano and Murano islands, for example).

What amazed me the most were people, coming from all parts of the world. I've just been sitting on piazza San Marco, watching united nations walking in front of me, sitting besides me, listening to their voices (understanding hardly anything), trying to guess where might they be coming from.

Furthermore, it was the absence of the green color - no parks, no lawns, no trees - I've seen only two of them and have had too expensive cappuccino in their shade on a small square slightly north from the Rialto bridge, at the beginning of Strada Nouva.

Finally, I memorized a beautiful musical intermezzo played by two middle-aged gentlemen on string instruments in a passage that leads from Santa Maria della Salute towards Peggy Guggenheim Museum.
__________________
* I agree with John. When talking to people here, where I live, there's no doubt which "Venice" I'm talking about - there's only one we know and care about (because large part of Croatian coast was - long time ago - ruled by Venice). We never specify country. Everybody knows that Venice is in Italy, Wien in Austria or Cairo in Egypt. However, it appears that I was right (at least, a little bit) because people who live in Florida have Venice right there and "Venice" (just "Venice") for them means Venice, FL. Or, as Barbara said, people in LA see their own Venice, LA, CA. Therefore, I thought that "Venice, Italy" cleared all possible doubts.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588940 is a reply to message #588399] Sun, 30 June 2013 05:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Anyway, back to Australia. We're in Alice Springs tonight - close to the geographical centre of Australia. We've been to Uluru (Ayers Rock) already. It seems they've got a new approach to controlling climbing - close the climb due to "strong winds on the summit". To be fair, it is quite dangerous - one false move and you drop down 300+ metres of near vertical rock - but I also think they're happy to close it if there is a hint of a breeze. Dozens of people have died on the climb over the years and our attitudes towards "liability" today are very different to yesteryear. No problem for us - we weren't planning to climb anyway.

We went on a dawn camel safari through the desert to see the sun rising beside the rock. Our point'n'shoot camera has one of those "sweep panorama" functions where you sweep the camera through 180 degrees and it merges it all into a continuous photo. I don't know if the photos are any good but I'm having fun taking them.

The next 3 days are a long miserable run from Alice Springs to Katherine. It's 1200km of featureless desert and scrub, punctuated by the occasional roadhouse for fuel and camping. We've had enough of sleeping in a tent in 1 degree (centigrade) nights and can't wait to get to the tropics.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #588948 is a reply to message #588940] Sun, 30 June 2013 16:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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You know, I was thinking that you might do the same (well, almost the same) next year in Croatia. As you're traveling from south to north of Australia, I'd suggest you to switch direction and go from far north (where I live; I might even join the adventure) to far south (say, Dubrovnik). According to my calculations, it would take 21 days, which is almost exactly the same you are going to spend now.

Major difference is that you'd use 2FD (2 feet drive; right, you'd walk!) ./fa/917/0/ That much about your & my country sizes ./fa/1693/0/
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #589490 is a reply to message #588948] Sun, 07 July 2013 14:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kevin Meade
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Registered: December 1999
Location: Connecticut USA
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Wow! This looks awesome. Makes me want to take time to do the same in my home country. I am an American so nuts to John. Only thing I know about Australia is it has killer snakes and spiders.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #589491 is a reply to message #589490] Sun, 07 July 2013 20:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Don't forget the sharks and crocs! There's more ways to die a horrible death at the hands of nature in Australia than just poisoning.

We went for a cruise in Nitmiluk (Katherine Gorge) a couple of days ago. Tour guide was pointing out all of the crocs as the boat passed and reassuring us that they were all "freshies", which are the harmless kind ... unless of course you act aggressively towards them, or they perceive that you are acting aggressively towards them, in which case they will cheerfully tear your leg off. The "salties" are the ones you need to look out for: highly aggressive, territorial, fearless apex predators. There are a couple of traps for them and a few red buoys (salties can't resist attacking them, so a missing/mangled buoy is a sure sign that one is around). They've seen no sign of them since the water dropped this dry-season, so they're "pretty sure" there's none about.

Our cruise included a 1 hour break in some rock-pools where we could have a swim. "Is it safe", "Yeah mate, rocks all round, water coming in over the rapids, crocs won't come here". "You coming in?", "No mate, I'll stay back here and set out the biscuits for morning tea". Hmmm.

[Updated on: Sun, 07 July 2013 20:05]

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Re: I'm going on holidays [message #589492 is a reply to message #589491] Sun, 07 July 2013 20:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kevin Meade
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hahaha that is beautiful man!
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #589495 is a reply to message #589492] Mon, 08 July 2013 00:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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That sounds a lot like Black Water.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590148 is a reply to message #589495] Mon, 15 July 2013 07:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Just finished loading up all of the photos onto the computer. I was having fun with the Sweep Panorama feature on my Sony point 'n' shoot camera. This is easily the best of them - shot in Kings Canyon
https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-CPtCGtEWj-Y/UePiCUXpekI/AAAAAAAAAfg/utDzrrsHSos/w1597-h351-no/DSC00655.JPG

Anyone interested can see the rest here
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590149 is a reply to message #590148] Mon, 15 July 2013 07:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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Beautiful!
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590151 is a reply to message #590148] Mon, 15 July 2013 07:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gazzag
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I lived in South Africa many years ago. A South African friend of mine took me to a rather secluded beach where we could jump into the sea from some fairly high up rocks. Just as I was about to jump I asked my friend "Are there any sharks in there?" He replied "No, mate." As I was at the point of no return beginning my jump he added "The crocodiles eat them all."

[edit: typo]

[Updated on: Mon, 15 July 2013 07:31]

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Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590276 is a reply to message #590151] Tue, 16 July 2013 09:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kevin Meade
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These are amazing. Some look alien. The colors... What was the crocks name? I can see that picture of the fammily in front of the Northern Territories as a box cover for Fallout4 (Fallout - New Territories). So cool. Thanks for sharing.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590496 is a reply to message #590148] Thu, 18 July 2013 12:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
joy_division
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rleishman wrote on Mon, 15 July 2013 08:04

Anyone interested can see the rest here


Photos remind me a little bit of Sedona, Arizona.
Sorry, I didn't see the link previously that there were more than just the embedded photo. Love 'em.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590500 is a reply to message #590496] Thu, 18 July 2013 17:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Watson
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You know, I was thinking of Sedona too. The first time I went to America, we spent three weeks in Arizona - including some time in Sedona. I thought the area had a strange kind of spooky feel to it, like Ross's pictures. The colours and contours of the rocks make you feel all kind of spiritual. A feeling that soon dissipates when you get back into town and are surrounded by shops selling dream catchers.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #590590 is a reply to message #590500] Fri, 19 July 2013 08:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
joy_division
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John Watson wrote on Thu, 18 July 2013 18:08
YA feeling that soon dissipates when you get back into town and are surrounded by shops selling dream catchers.


Hahaha, you nailed it!
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #609926 is a reply to message #590590] Fri, 14 March 2014 00:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Off on holidays again to the Gold Coast (Australia's Miami, minus the guns)

40km of almost unbroken jellyfish-free, croc-free, and pretty much shark-free beach with 5 theme parks for the kids

https://maps.google.com.au/maps?q=surfers+paradise&hl=en&sll=-32.010396,135.119128&sspn=101.252928,154.335938&hnear=S urfers+Paradise+Queensland&t=m&z=14

./fa/11758/0/
./fa/11759/0/
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #609951 is a reply to message #587289] Fri, 14 March 2014 09:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kevin Meade
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Beautiful!

And there is nothing better than those almost no sharks beaches.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #609959 is a reply to message #609951] Fri, 14 March 2014 11:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Watson
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A quick Google suggests that Oz has on average 1.4 fatal shark attacks per year.
One chap was eaten only a couple of weeks ago, so if the sharks read the news they
will know that they are nearly up to quota for the year already.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #610437 is a reply to message #609959] Thu, 20 March 2014 01:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Scratch the Jellyfish-free bit, too.
./fa/11766/0/

[Updated on: Thu, 20 March 2014 01:53]

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Re: I'm going on holidays [message #610443 is a reply to message #610437] Thu, 20 March 2014 02:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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I have difficulties in understanding what you've just said.

I know what jellyfish is, what scratch means, but I can't translate the whole sentence so that it would actually
mean something. So, what are you saying?

Is this a dead jellyfish? The ones I saw were alive and colorless; this one is blue? How large is it?
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #610450 is a reply to message #610443] Thu, 20 March 2014 03:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Sorry about that. Scratch is used I'm horse racing, it means the horse has been withdrawn from the race. From there, scratching anything, especially something you just said, means to withdraw it or take it back. So I take back what I said about Gold Coast beaches being free of jellyfish. Clearly they are not.
Yes, this is a dead jellyfish. It is about the size of a baby's fist. I think these ones are sometimes called bluebottles.
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #610454 is a reply to message #610450] Thu, 20 March 2014 03:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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Oh yes, now it makes sense! Thanks!
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #610542 is a reply to message #610437] Fri, 21 March 2014 02:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Watson
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giant jellyfish
Re: I'm going on holidays [message #610853 is a reply to message #610542] Tue, 25 March 2014 03:52 Go to previous message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Yeah, not much to worry about there. Tassie is a bit like Scotland for swimming. If they could send all the crocs, sharks and jellies down there then nobody would notice

Good news, the jellies at the Gold Coast were just washed south in a storm; they were all gone the next day.
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