TRAVEL STORY: INCIDENTS AT NOOSA AUSTRALIA- THE SUNSHINE COAST
After one eventful week of culture and clubbing in Brisbane, I finally headed back to Australia’s beaches, this time to the Sunshine Coast, located a bit north of Brisbane.
I caught a train from ‘Brisbie’ to a tiny country station about 2 hours north. From there I cycled 1 1/2 hours east to the coast, arriving at the southern end of the ‘Sunshine’ section. Quite unfortunately, my ride was rather hilly, finishing with a stiff climb up a small mountain.
Happily, Sunshine Coast was well worth the effort. Several golden beaches, separated by rocky headlands, lined the coast as far as I could see. Beaches were all backed by grassy parks with bike trails, picnic tables and fantastic views. The entire Sunshine Coast was peaceful, quiet, and mostly residential. A fantastic place to have a home.
I found a wonderful campground near the beach. One large section was in disuse, so I promptly planted my tent there in a nice forest full of colorful, squawking lorikeets (small parrots), all to myself.
I stayed the following day, exploring and tanning on the beach. The next two days I cycled northward along the coast, visiting coastal resort towns, lounging on beaches, and camping. Eventually, I reached the far north end of the Sunshine Coast: Noosa.
Noosa, I discovered, is an upscale resort town, set at an exceedingly beautiful natural area. Noosa’s most prominent feature is a stunning headland graced with a dense scrubby forest, designated a National Park. Noosa River comes down from the interior mountains to empty into the sea at Noosa.
The tranquil, well-protected river is graced with regal sailboats and beautiful water birds. Stunning homes and condo buildings line the river. At one end of town, there’s another forest park. More national parks with lakes, rivers and wild beaches are just beyond town. It reminded me of Sanur, one of my favorite places in Bali.
Noosa’s main street is situated just behind the region’s longest beach. Town is full of upscale shops, cafes, restaurants, clubs, and bars, and speckled with lush tropical vegetation.
I got myself a campsite at a caravan park just north of town. That evening I bought groceries and put them in the campers’ fridge in the laundry room. Then I took a nap before going out dancing. When I got up at 10:30 pm I found the laundry room locked. All my food was in there. Uh, oh. Anyone who knows me well knows that is a potential disaster: I get extremely sick if I can’t eat when my body needs food.
The office was long closed, so I looked around for night security or a manager or someone. Nobody. I asked around. No information. So I finally went banging on the owner’s door and windows until they eventually came out. Oh, shit. BIG mistake! Man, was that lady PISSED OFF! “Who do you think you are?!!!”
“Well, I’m a guest at your place and I need some help. I’m very sorry to disturb you but I couldn’t find the security…”
She could give a shit. She was simply and completely infuriated! I’ve never met a person so pissed off about helping someone, especially a guest at their own place of business. She launched into a tirade, telling me off, saying she wouldn’t unlock the door where my food was, and liberally tossing insulting comments my way.
I finally had to pull a crying routine, apologizing, and begging for help, “I’m hypoglycemic and need to eat, otherwise I’ll end up in the hospital” Eventually the woman finally came out, infuriated, and stomped over to the laundry room, still telling me off as she marched along, and then crashing the door open. She even threatened to throw me out that night. All because I needed to access my food that they had locked up, with no warning signs. Wowie, talk about hotheads! (I’m happy to report most Australians are not so cold an uncaring.)
After that ordeal, I went out dancing, with my food of course, so I don’t know if they tried to evict me or not. When I returned at 3:00 am, my tent was still in place, to my great relief. But I had even better news: I could move out next morning. That very night out clubbing, by great chance, I bumped into an Aussie guy I knew from Bali. What are the chances? He had immediately offered to let me stay at his place.
The following morning I gladly packed up my tent and moved into a real house. Even better, my friend’s house was close to the beach, with a balcony overlooking the ocean, surrounded by trees. It proved to be a great place to hang and relax. I decided to stay another week before continuing my travels up the coast.
I soon contacted a few ‘Survivor’ pals living in the area, and was able to meet up with them. I also met several locals who invited me to visit or hang out. Noosa people were very friendly and welcoming, aside from the campground witch, that is.
One afternoon I went out exploring the beaches beyond Noosa headland. I followed hiking trails up into the forest then down the other side to the next stunning stretch of fluffy white sand. Walking along the tide line, letting cool water lap at my ankles, I noticed a few naked bathers. Looking around more carefully, I suddenly realized that everyone was naked! I was strolling along a nude beach, fully clothed in a little sun dress. Boy, did I feel like a dunce!
I quickly considered what to do. Should I get naked, too? Honestly, I wasn’t quite comfortable enough to do that. Should I leave back the way I’d come? No, I still wanted to explore the area. Finally I decided to just continue along, as if nothing untoward was happening. The nudists could all be naked if they wanted. I certainly didn’t mind. I’d wear my dress and hope they didn’t mind me either.
My predicament soon became stranger. I gradually caught up with a naked man who was also strolling along the tide line. (Nothing like accentuating my glaringly obvious mistake. lol) So, what to do? Have a chat, of course!
My new friend, the naked man, and I strolled along the beach together chatting as if we were old buddies, or new friends, perhaps. I somehow managed not to continually glance down as we chatted. I’m proud to say that I have no idea whether he was aroused or not. Eventually we reached the end of the beach and bid our farewells. I continued along the coast while he returned to his naked pals. Ce’s la vie!
Two nights later while out clubbing, I met a guy who impressed me as being very good-hearted, polite, well-spoken, and clean-cut. As we were chatting he declared, “Yeah, today I’m celebrating my new freedom” ”Oh,what’s that?” ”I just got out of jail for armed robbery. A bank”
Oh S**t!! Goes to show how ’good’ I am at character judgement. At that point, I was immensely relieved that I was out on a date with a very tall husky bouncer-type man, who was well-known in Noosa.
Meanwhile, one friend from ‘Survivor’ offered to drive me 50 km up the beach (as in driving a 4WD on the beach) to my next destination, Rainbow Beach. As my eventful week in Noosa wound down, I looked forward to my next Australian adventures at Rainbow Beach and Fraser Island. Little did I suspect that a much larger travel disaster was about to unfold on that adventurous, untamed island…
Have you traveled the east coast of Australia? If so, what were your favorite places?
In your travels have you ever met up with local ‘hotheads’ ? Tell us your story!
This post brought to you in part by Thomas Cook who would like to invite you to check out their Holidays to Spain when you’re traveling in Europe.