Saturday, January 10, 2009

Noosa: first thoughts

We flew into Maroochidore, which is an interesting experience since the plane comes in low over the water and lands right beside the beach. At one point we wondered if it had to have pontoons since you don't actually see land until you're nearly on it.
The bus brought us right to the door, and we got our first look at our new home. Jacqui and Charlie's house is just as lovely as it appeared in the photos, and the kids were soon upstairs sorting out who got what room. That taken care of, it was in to the pool, something Charlotte in particular had been waiting to do for days.
After a quick swim, I got in the car and went to find some "takeaway". (Incidentally, it's quite funny how we're all starting to pick up the lingo. We buy takeaway and stand in a queue without a second thought. I haven't got used to being asked "how're ya goin?" though: I keep wanting to reply "I'm going by car.") I ended up in Peregian Beach, which is just to the south of us. It's a funky little beach village, whose commercial area seems to consist mainly of a square block or so containing half a dozen restaurants, a grocery store, and three bottle shops (liquor stores). It was just after dark, and the square was bustling with families and couples sitting at sidewalk tables and at picnic tables, sharing a meal and watching the kids run around. Very casual, very cool, very fun.
Early to bed last night, as we're still a bit wrung out from the road. Turns out the neighbours are very noisy. Not the human ones, but the birds and frogs. The house backs onto a national park, and after dark the volume of noise from the frogs and insects is insane. It gets even louder around 5:00 when the parrots and other birds start to wake up. Still, it won't be hard to get used to it. This morning, as we had a coffee on the deck, we watched as a bush turkey strutted into the yard (picture is courtesy of Flickr). I said that was all very well and good, but we wouldn't be as thrilled if snakes and crocodiles started coming out to visit us. Sharon says we need a gun -- first to silence the squawky birds, then to shoot a turkey for dinner. A true Muskoka girl, that Sharon.
We took a quick look around Noosa today, but we're still a bit whipped and none of us seem to feel much like doing anything but lounging around the pool. Tomorrow we'll go exploring a bit.
So far Noosa and surrounds reminds me of a mix between Port Carling and Grand Bend -- communities that are home to locals but exist for the tourists. It's very easy to see why Noosa is such a popular vacation destination, and why so many Australians, upon learning we were going to be spending a year here, congratulated us.
As an indication of how renowned Noosa is, in the travel section of yesterday's The Australian newspaper, there was an article on the growing popularity of cruise ships. The lede said "Cruise ships are the new Noosa."
Now it's time for a dip before dinner.

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