I came, I saw, I stumbled, but conquered.

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You may not be able to see them, but there are whales in this pic!!!

 

I am firmly back on Tera Firma after my grand Solo Adventure!

The fact that I made it there and back is proof that I am more capable than I thought, and nothing makes me happier than proving my doubting self wrong. Take that, negative brain!

Yeah, I hopped the wrong train, missed a bus or 2, wandered about on foot, doing my country girl best, to not panic (for Toy Story fans-“this is the perfect time to panic” was on repeat in my frazzled brain) , and caught the wrong boat, making for an 8 hour travel day. But I got there in the end!

My destination was nothing short of paradise and though it’s been 16 years, it’s just as stunning as I remember!

I almost don’t want to say where it is, out of a selfish wish to keep it secret, but I can’t do that.
Stradbroke Island Qld. If you’ve never been, check it out!

We are lucky enough to have family there and I have very fond memories of bumming around as a kid, whale watching, sliding down sand dunes and stumbling upon nudist beaches.*

I was there for a 1 night stay and thanks to my wonderful cousins, in that time I managed to see 2 lots of whales, a pod of dolphins, a fur seal and a koala! Crazy!!!

The reason behind my visit this year was the Straddie 1000, a 1 kilometer swim off Cylinder Beach. This swim has been in my radar since I started Open Water Swimming a year ago, and I was not let down by the gorgeous conditions, and challenging course. Nor by myself.
I beat my in pool PB by 2 minutes, and have raised the bar to beat it again next year.

My heart rate has only just returned to normal. It’s been an adrenal overload since Saturday, dealing with Public Transport, strangers, wearing togs in public, not being robbed, and coming in under my goal time!

My blood pressure has been sky rocketing. Passers by would have clearly seen my pulse pounding through my tensed up neck! I’d even be surprised if they couldn’t hear it.

I encountered no punks (or nudes) and was able to problem solve tricksy issues, and compete as best I could, while catching up with beautiful family and friends. Challenge conquered.

Now, I think it’s time for a cup of tea and a radox bath.

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A rare Fur Seal visit! He is supposed to be in NZ, but seems to be on a R’n’R stopover. And me, all grin! I’m in the hat.

*The image of a nude, middle aged, bearded man relaxing in the shallows, his bits ebbing and flowing with the waves, is sadly, forever burned into my retina. I’ve never looked at seaweed the same again. Shudder.

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The start Flags. My view from the shade of the headland.

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Stunning right?

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