I learned something new yesterday. The difference between a hurricane, a cyclone and a typhoon is nothing other than where they are located. In the US we call them hurricanes, in Asia they call them typhoons and here in Australia they call them cyclones. The reason I bring this up is that one of them, a category 5 cyclone, hit the east coast of Australia, about 6 hours north of where we were staying, yesterday. We got drenched in Byron Bay as Ilise and I hiked up to the lighthouse at the top of the point. The rain was teeming down and the wind was howling. The walk was really invigorating and we had a lot of fun together. When we got back to the car it was like we had just walked out of the ocean, we were SOAKED!
We headed back to the house and showered and then packed it in, literally, for the rest of the day. The kids did some schoolwork and we spent much of the afternoon and early evening repacking. I say repacking because we keep dragging all of our suitcases into every place and we are not using everything. Each person had their own suitcase and we had stuff distributed everywhere. So, we decided to create a couple of bags that have 3 days or so of clothes for everyone and do that a couple of times. Then we took the stuff we use every day, mostly shoes and toiletries, and put them into two other bags. So, now when we go to a place for two or three nights we bring in one suitcase with all the clothes and the two everyday suitcases. This allows us to leave 3 bags in the car and not drag them with us. We are off to an island off the east coast tomorrow for 3 nights and will only need to bring 3 carry-ons with us, a big change from dragging 6 different suitcases!
So, with the storm comes a few unexpected things, like a power outage. We were in the middle of watching some American Idol auditions on YouTube and boom, blackness everywhere. The TV went off, the internet went away and since it was about 10 PM it was evident that we should go to bed, which we all did. I ended up waking up around 1:45 AM listening to a blaring TV and all the lights on in the house. After I shut everything off I headed back to bed. I awoke around 6 AM and got on the phone for some calls and realized that the sky had cleared and it was actually pretty nice out. I waited until about 7:15 and told Ilise to get everyone up as we needed to get on the road to make it to the Steve Irwin Zoo, the home of the crocodile hunter. We had a 3 hour drive and we wanted to get there with enough time to see the sites. We got on the road by 9:25 and set off for the Sun Coast and the zoo.
I looked at the GPS and it said we had 2 hours and 47 minutes but the arrival time was an hour earlier, we were about to change time zones on this drive and gain an hour in our day. Woopie, we now have more time to get to the zoo! Well, the drive through the Gold Coast and past Brisbane was miserable, rain upon rain down pouring on us and driving was not fun. Most of the roads had reduced speed limits and once we got to the exit for the zoo, the first road we took was shut down because of major flooding, the road in front of us was literally gone. So, we turned around and headed north to find another way in. It took us an extra 30 minutes to get there but we finally made it, and the zoo was actually open. This post is getting a bit long, so I will create a new post just about the zoo, it deserves it’s own post anyway 🙂
To a life well lived!