|Pond view at the Cattana Wetlands.|
It’s 7:45 am as I begin here today. I have the final load of laundry going, I’m showered and dressed back into my nightshirt while the clothes I’ll wear for the next 48 hours spin in the washer.
|A huge croc was found here at Deadman’s Gully last year which was later found and moved to another less populated location.|
Packing the duffel bag for the overnight in Sydney is challenging when it already contains all of our jeans, both shorts and heavy long pants in order to lighten the weight of the checked bags. We always carry on the duffel bag. With two pairs blue jeans each, plus three pairs of jeans shorts each, its a heavy load.
|Another of Tom’s sunrise photos.|
Also, I’ve packed my large Costco beach bag, which is a temporary-for-travel-days-only handbag with a few toiletries we’ll need in the hotel: toothbrushes and toothpaste, shavers, contact lens case filled with solution for tonight only, antiperspirant and my small black cosmetic bag. No fluff. No creams, lotions or potions for us.
|An eye catching orchid found at Rusty’s Farmers Market.|
The three bags to be checked need to be arranged and weighed one last time to fit what we’re currently wearing and any last minute items. Tom’s busy in the kitchen washing our iced tea pitcher which we’ll pack with clothes and place in a bag. I just packed the half-full large grinder from Costco containing Himalayan salt.
|It was cloudy and rained almost everyday during our first month in Australia. Once it cleared, the weather was prefect day after day.|
Sleep was fleeting last night as it always is before leaving. Tonight won’t be much better when we have to awaken at 4 am and be out the door of the hotel at 4:30 am. We’ve timed ourselves and when necessary, both of us can manage our entire time in the bathroom in the morning to less than 20 minutes. No dawdling here. Efficiency is the name of this game.
|A final visit to Trinity Beach on a sunny day.|
Today, we plan to be out the door at 3:30 pm for our three hour 5:20 pm flight to Sydney. Based on what we have left to do, getting out the door won’t be rushed or stressed.
As for the expenses, there aren’t any surprises. We were very close to the amounts we’d budgeted, except for the medical exams and tests which we hadn’t originally included.
|Last week’s full moon over the bay.|
Here are our expenses for the past almost three months:
Rent: USD $7,058 AUD $10,207
Car Rental: USD $2,628 AUD $3,512 (fuel costs included)
Airfare: USD $ 477 AUD $ 690
Entertainment: USD $ 553 AUD $ 800
Groceries: USD $2,854 AUD $4,128
Dining Out: $0
Misc.* USD $5128 AUD $7,413
Total: USD $18,698 AUD $27,032
*The above mentioned miscellaneous is a category we’ll add to the future final expenses posts as we’ve done today. In this case, it included all of our medical expenses, medical tests, prescriptions, cost for SIM data, clothing and supplies we had shipped to us from the US, shipping fees, various toiletries we purchased at the local pharmacy, clothing at a local store, etc.
|Standing on the pier at Green Island, the expanse of this tiny portion of the Great Barrier Reef was breathtaking.|
We’ve always kept track of these non-rental related expenses but haven’t included them in the totals we’ve posted in the past.
|Peeking through the trees to Double Island on a cloudy day. Sunny or cloudy, we took many photos while in Trinity Beach|
Bottom line, the above totals are every last cent we spent while living in Australia. Of course, these totals do not include deposits and payments we’ve paid for future rentals and cruises while living in Australia.
|Kangaroo family resting under a tree on a hot day.|
For example, we did not include the final payments for the rental in Fiji or for the paid in full cruise to Vietnam. Those figures will be reflected at the end of each of those experiences as we’ve listed these today.
Feel free to inquire if any of you have questions regarding any of these expenses. We’ll always happy to answer any of our readers questions in regards to costs.
|Local Bluewater Marina.|
Also, please note that we haven’t dined out while living in Trinity Beach, not once in an entire 88 days. This is a first and its unlikely this will occur again. As mentioned in a prior post, we’d been unable to find suitable restaurants for my way of eating. We could have found a few options but with the beautiful organic vegetables, free range chicken and eggs, grass fed meats and fresh fish, we had little interest in dining out.
|There are warning signs at each of the beaches regarding crocs and stingers when an encounter can be life threatening.|
Also, with an enormous outlay for future venues, we tightened our belts and ate meals at home. We could easily added another USD $1500, AUD $2169 to the above totals and with the outlay of funds, we felt it was a good time to cut back.
|Each of the many beaches in the area had their own unique appeal.|
With Fiji on the horizon and many expenses behind us, we can look forward to dining out each week if we’d like, using the driver to take us back and forth. From what we’ve heard the cost of the driver several times a week will be considerably less than what we’ve paid for rental cars. We shall see.
|Many homeowners become annoyed by cockatoos who can be noisy and destructive. Many afternoons they arrived in the yard in huge flocks. The noise is deafening but it was always fun to see them.|
One odd item, we decided to try while here: Could we get by entirely usin credit cards only, never stopping at an ATM? We did! The only cash we have is a refund given to us by Woolies for bacon we’d purchased that was slimy. Not only did they replace the bacon with fresh bacon at not charge, they also gave us back the entire amount for the cost of the bacon.
|Exquisite Holloways Beach view from atop a steep hill.|
At first, I refused the AUD $12, stating they’d already replaced the bad bacon at no charge and I didn’t require more. But, the store manager insisted I take the ziplock bag of cash, explaining it was their policy to not only replace the item at no charge but also, give the customer back the money. Only in Australia! Now, we have some cash for tips at the airport.
That’s it for now, folks. Back to wrapping things up, finishing the laundry, packing the odds and ends scattered about the house and cleaning the house as much as time allows. Sylvie insisted we not worry about cleaning but, we always like to leave the property somewhat clean and definitely free of trash and debris.
|Kookaburra stopped by the yard to sit atop the fence, next to the rain gauge.|
Thanks to Sylvie and Andy, our wonderful hosts. If the Cairns area is on your mind for a future visit, you too could enjoy spending time in this lovely property. Click here for details.
Soon, we’re off to the airport to pay for our excess baggage and await our flight to Sydney. If time and wifi allows we’ll do a quick post with photos. If not, we’ll be back in 48 hours from our new home in Fiji.
Thanks, again to all of our loyal readers for staying with us during crazy, exciting and also mundane times as we slowly make our way around the world.
Photo from one year ago today, September 7, 2014:
|Standing on Omaha Beach in Normandy, France, one year ago. We were in awe of having the opportunity to visit this profoundly emotional historical site. For more photos and details, please click here.|