What does the last of the housewives do?

Month: October, 2012

More Cairns Attractions

“So the dog that was taken by a crocodile last week wasn’t at Kewarra Beach at all. It was further up Deep Creek”, I said. “What, the creek that borders the resort we’re staying at?” queried my sister. Well, yes.

We had been getting a lecture on the sorely misunderstood crocodile at Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures. Apparently they’re indiscriminate opportunistic (or idealistic anachronistic as the Moose would have it) feeders, so it’s not their fault they eat fisherfolk’s dogs. The crocodile park is a reptile lovers’ wonderland, with a boat ride around a huge man made lagoon offering plenty of croc sightings which make you realise how easily they disguise themselves and how quickly and silently they can appear.

There is a croc in there somewhere. There’s also a python show for those who prefer their reptiles without legs. Plenty of water dragons, skinks and geckos wander free through the park. There’s also some token macropods for those who want something fluffy to pat. The highlight is the Croc Attack show, where in our case a slightly hungover Hawthorn supporter gave us an impassioned lecture on his favourite animal while standing in muddy water with an eight foot sample in with him as two of his colleagues looked nervously on holding big sticks and dead chickens for distraction purposes. He really did seem to be in some danger as the croc tried to follow him into the cage from which he would later dangle a crab while the monster leapt into the air to snap it out of his shaking fingers. It was quite the spectacle.

Something for the older kids is the go karting just out of Cairns. It seemed to be popular with groups of morning after lads. The kids were sufficiently recovered from their Vomitron experience last week to be highly amused that a lad in the race before us managed to vomit into his helmet. The helmets are motorbike style units, and he was still washing and disinfecting it and his kart out well after we’d finished our race. The Muffet and the Horror were too small to ride their own karts, so us parents took one each. The Moose had his own, but immediately had a thirty second penalty for driving on the grass in his first lap. The helmets are quite large and tight, so all I could hear from the Horror for our eight laps was a constant “meep meep meep” sound. After we got out I asked him what it was he wanted. He said “I was saying MUMMY SLOW DOWN!!!”. I had worked out after the first lap that it was possibly to safely do the circuit with the pedal to the metal. Which meant that our average lap time was the fastest of the three family karts, as the husband got rammed and also kept taking corners too sharply and hitting the tyres around the track. Do I rule? I think I rule.

I haven’t managed to get that pedicure yet. I have high hopes for the morrow.

Easy holiday lunch

I’m trying very hard not to Google Dirty Sanchez, the name of the cocktail I had tonight, which my sister assures me has hidden meanings that I’m not sure I want to be cognizant of. Also Cleveland Steamer, which sounds to me like a clam dish. Not looking.

Anyway, today we checked out of the Lee household, and of course I’ve been all awkward for nothing. We had a great time staying there, I’m extremely grateful to Gary and Helen.
The only thing that was awkward was the stairs. Not that I have a problem with stairs, it’s just that I didn’t realise that my knees make a kind of wet crunching sound when ascending, not noticeable on anything other than carpeted stairs. My husband has injury envy and says I don’t deserve to have joints that make that kind of racket.

In an effort to use up our supplies I discovered a very easy and delicious lunch. You could possibly make it just with a bowl and boiling water if you don’t mind it lukewarm, but I had access to a saucepan. Put a chunk of butter in a small saucepan over heat and add as many baby spinach leaves as you have left over from a previous salad. Stir around with a fork until wilted. Tip in about two thirds of a cup of instant couscous and about three quarters of a cup of boiling water and stir it again with a fork. Add about a third of a cup of finely grated cheese, it melts quicker the more finely you grate it. Stir again and eat.


I can’t eat fast food every meal on holidays, so I’m always pleased to find something easy to make that isn’t a sandwich. I think that the rest of the holiday is going to be less activity based and more of the lead up to the wedding we’re actually here for, so there’ll be a bit more eating at home. I really hope that there’s a pedicure in my immediate future. I wonder if I’ll have to do more than cross my fingers to make that happen.

A Better Snorkel

“Where’s the shark?” asked the Horror from Outer Space through his snorkel. “Where’s the shark where’s the shark where’s the shark AAAAARGH!” he said, while executing quite a fine example of an underwater leap. The Casey family snorkelled with a shark today and it was exactly exciting enough. It was almost the same length as the Horror, and kept swimming in figure eights under us, but didn’t go snapping at our fins or tearing any marine life apart.

We got the kids on board the Silver Sonic this morning after some very fast talking and extreme applications of the placebo effect. They were worried that they were going to be sick again if they got on a boat. Of course, so were we, but we weren’t telling them that. I went to the trouble and expense of brewing some ginger tea with local ginger purchased at Rusty’s Markets in Cairns and some palm sugar I found at an excitingly comprehensive Asian supermarket. For a sample recipe, please see my previous blogs. This morning we all had some, though the kids complained it was too strong. Of course, I told them, medicine has to be strong to work properly. I thought it was excellent, and believed my own propaganda. Just in case, everybody except me took some Travacalm as well before boarding the rather swish Silver Sonic at Port Douglas.

The promised rough ride (shut up! I kept thinking) wasn’t at all, but the kids rode outside at the front just in case. As an additional precaution, the Moose danced Gungnam style the whole way too. Whatever, it worked. It was the best snorkel yet. We stopped at three different reefs, all with beautiful coral and very clear water. Our Japanese snorkel guide promised us “many Nemo and Giant Crams”, and he was right, both before and after runch. We even saw a moray eel, possibly, just so the Moose could say “that’s amore … eel”. The last stop was at Turtle Reef, so called as our disappointingly non Japanese snorkel guide said “we very occasionally see turtles here”. We didn’t, but it was still spectacular. All in all, I think the shark was the highlight. Are we done snorkelling? We’re now into family reunion mode, so it’s out of our hands, but if so, we’ve done good.