Part 2: Olga Fizzles, but Sydney Shines

Port Douglas is as pretty a harbor town as you could imagine. There are big parks at both ends of the main street, a beautiful marina just a couple blocks from downtown and multiple cozy coffee shops and bakeries. Lush foliage was planted everywhere. The shopkeepers were all friendly. It was so hot, nobody was in much of a hurry. It was a relaxing place.

We headed back to Thala Beach after stocking up on a few essentials. The road was lined with various resorts, and field after field of sugar cane. I remember thinking parts of Hawaii must look very similar.

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Our Trip Down Under, Part 1: Large Aircraft, High Humidity and Koalas

[Kathy decided to write up our trip, both to help us remember it better as the years go by, and to share the story with friends. With her permission, and in installments, here ’tis for all.]

Joo, Kathy and Eugene

We left Seattle on a typically gray, damp day. The first flight was to L.A., where our good friends Joo and Simon and their 6 month old son Eugene met us. It was our first time to meet Eugene, who of course cried every time I held him. Simon said I shouldn’t feel bad, as Eugene cries when Simon holds him too. He is very much a velcro baby and wants to stick to Joo all the time. But he sure is cute.

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There’s Rain and then there’s


Olga was a bust. Lots of warning, lots of cancellations (including most of our plans in Port Douglas), but then … nothing.



Monday was a quiet, almost windless day. Hot and humid.

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Best Laid Plans

As part of setting up this trip, I’d booked a few activities that were to take place today (Sunday, as I write this) and tomorrow.

Note the words “were to take place”.

It turns out that 30 years ago Kathy and I got married during “cyclone season”.

How … interesting.

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Bucket List item: check!

So when I started putting together an itinerary for this trip I asked Kathy if there was anything in particular she wanted to see or do or whatever.

She had only one request:

“I want to hold a Koala.”

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