Today started at my parents place in Maroochydore. after breakfast I wandered down to the bowls club to watch my parents playing bowls, where the usual happened. I don't watch sport much, don't really care about it. However, if I actually watch a sports match and care about the outcome, the team I want to win will loose. When I got to the bowls club, their team was down 8 to 7, and won a point on that end brining it even at 8 all. They ended up loosing 17 to 8. Once I arrived they couldn't get anything to go their way, and the other team simply outplayed them. Oh well.
Then it was back home for a quick lunch and heading off to Brisbane airport. No flights to Cairns from Maroochydore so I had to book the flight from Brisbane instead, and Mum and Dad were happy to drive me down. The drive was uneventful, however I didn't realise we were close to the airport until we were there. The area surrounding Brisbane airport has changed dramatically since I was last down. The duplication of the Gateway Bridge is done, and all those weird-ass roundabouts on the way in have been removed.
Dropped off at the airport around two, checked in and headed up to the newly renovated Virgin Lounge. I have to say I don't like the renovations. It's all light and airy and hip and happening, or at least I think that's what they were going for. I just found it sparse. Weird counters that jut out for no apparent reason and waste space, and it didn't look complete to me. Anyway, the food and complimentary wireless was just as good as always.
My visit to the Lounge was a bit different to all my previous visits though. I think this is the first time I've visited when I've been going to someplace, all the other times it's been coming home. I pop into the Lounge if I arrive at the airport early and have time to kill. I doubt I'll ever do that coming from home (if I have time to kill, I'll do it at home, thank you very much) so it's only ever been when I'm leaving wherever I've been and am heading back. I think this made the visit much more relaxed because I had nothing to care about at the other end of the trip.
Flight was boring (which is a good thing) and we touched down in Cairns about 5 minutes early. For a change I didn't pull out the inflatable pillow to wedge in the small of my back (which I usually do to keep my back for seizing up during the flight) and surprisingly enough I didn't have a problem. Either the seats on the plane were better than normal, or my lower back is holding itself together better, or the week visiting Mum and Dad actually had relaxed me somewhat to begin with. I'm guessing a combination of the three.
Landed, grabbed my bag and got a ticket for the Cairns airport shuttle bus ($12 one way). I ended up sitting next to a hunky young man with one of those huge backpacks in his lap. Him and his mate (who was sitting the row behind) were probably the first ones on the bus so they spread out but when we left we had 19 out of a possible maximum of 20 passengers, so they ended up with people next to them.
I'm not complaining, as the one I was sitting next to was quite a hunk. They ended up chatting during the drive into Cairns (very short, less than 10 minutes) and the American twang in their voices was very distinct. I would probably place them as from the southern US (but not the deep south), something like southern California or across to Texas, or something like that.
Got to the hotel, unpacked, and decided to go for a walk. When we landed the pilot said it was a pleasant 20 degrees, and it was beautiful. By the time I'd finished unpacking it had gotten a bit of a chill in the air, but still beautiful. My hotel (the Mantra Trilogy) is right on the Esplanade, and I have a view of the water from the balcony. I wouldn't call it a beautiful view, as it's nighttime so I can hardly see anything, and it's low tide, so the harbour is currently a mudflat. Oh well, still nice anyway.
I walked up to the point, then back the other way to skate park (where the lights had just gone out, so I didn't hang around and watch) then back to the hotel. I bought a carton of orange juice and grabbed a whole heap of tourist brochures from the lobby before heading back up for the morning, and now I'm here.
I'm planning on leaving the curtains open so that the rising sun puts heaps of sunlight into my room (balcony is eastish facing) and we'll see if that's a good idea in the morning.
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