Yes, we took a boat out to the Great Barrier Reef. It was pretty cool. Firstly, it felt good to be out swimming around in water that is warm enough for it. The trip was a bit tour-group-ey. They would do things like scream “Are you ready to have fun?” to which we were supposed to scream in reply “Yeeeaaahhh!!!” I find such things rarely add to my actual enjoyment. The reef itself was plenty.
It was wonderful. The colour, health and variety of the coral were better than I have ever seen in Belize or the Caribbean. They also have giant clams, some of which were as long as my arm. We were actually allowed enough time to get our fill of each place we stopped. We didn’t feel rushed, although in Footprint, we would have been allowed to stray further from the boat. They fed us well and during the interim between dives, one of their crew gave a very good marine biology/dive talk. He was a young guy with lots of enthusiasm. If there had been an “awesome/wicked/cool” drinking game, tough, none of us would have made it off the boat.
Finally - the Great Barrier Reef
I discovered on the walk home that I still had quite a bit of Aussie dollars to get rid of. We had planned to go back for the $10 deal, but decided to go somewhere else to spend a little more. We found a place with really good pizza and placed our order. It turned out they were having a special, not $20, $15. Damn! Then the woman we ordered from gave us our receipt and told us to go to the bar for our free drink! Now this was a real pickle. I had managed to find a good deal, but I didn’t want one. I wanted to say “now you listen here, I want you to charge me full price for that pizza and I’ll pay for my own drink, thank you very much!”, but for some reason, I just couldn’t do it. I’ll just get it changed when we get back.