Tylor Skory's Travel Blog

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The Rainforest of Cairns

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We had to wake up early this morning because it was our first excursion. I was up early anyway but I didn’t go down to the jogging track. I just got ready and then met my grandparents down for breakfast. It was just my grandpa and I going out, because my grandma had already been here multiple times before and wanted to say behind and read (she’s obsessed with the Hunger Games, which I found really funny).

We headed down to our meeting point and then headed off the ship and onto the busses. Cairns is known as the home of the great barrier reef, but it also holds a large rainforest. Our trip was a cable car ride through the rainforest. It was a lot of fun! We went really high up and ran right through the middle of it all. It was extremely mountainy so our cart got really high and could see everything. There were three stops were you got off the car and walked a bit through the forest and look around. I’d never seen anything like it. The trees were so tall, the vines were huge, there were Cockatoos flying around. It was so cool. At one point, the carts went right past a waterfall.

As we got higher and further out, it started to get really foggy. In the thickest point, you could hardly see the car in front of you. Around the second stop, it really was raining (hence the name rainforest, I guess). We were handed umbrellas and walked around for a bit, took pictures, etc. It was really cool. It’s was funny to think that it was raining in the forest but not when we had gotten off the boat; oh the wonders of nature. Speaking of nature, the sounds in the forest were so cool. It sounded just like a scene from a movie. When you were really high up in the air in the cable car in the middle of the fog, and the rain was tapping against the window, you could hear all this wildlife down below. Bugs chirping and birds screeching and all sorts of other sounds that I can only imagine the animals they belonged to. It was so serene.

After the forest, we stopped off at a little market. It was a spot where you could eat, shop, sit down. And we ended the day with a tour of Cairns. It was definitely a lot of fun. It was interesting to see and hear what it was like living in such a tropical area. I can’t say that it’s for me, but it was definitely beautiful.

Once we got back, I ate lunch and headed right to the showers. I was covered in bug spray and suntan lotion and wanted to wash it off ASAP. Then a much needed nap was had. The rest of the evening was pretty routine; afternoon tea, dinner and a show. Tonight was a violinist. He had played for the royal family, won Australia’s got talent (or whatever the TV show was called) and a bunch of other things. He was really good. Again, the only problem was that I was having a hard time staying awake! Even though it was only eight, I was exhausted and couldn’t keep my eyes open!

Well, we have another five days at sea now until we get to Guam. I imagine that it’s going to be pretty uneventful (which is fine by me. I like the lazy days), but I might not update here every day. We’ll have to see.

Written by Tylor Skory

March 3rd, 2012 at 12:02 pm

Posted in Australia,Cairns

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Formal Night

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This morning I was feeling much better. I woke up, FaceTimed with my family back home and then headed to the jogging track. It really is nice! I enjoy being on the deck early in the morning. The sun isn’t too hot and there’s a nice breeze. At breakfast, we ate at the buffet. I was able to have gluten free pancakes. The cruise has been really accommodating with making gluten free foods. The pancakes were surprisingly good. We were having a late breakfast that extend into lunchtime. My grandpa got out his Macbook and we decided to pop in on some family members back home via FaceTime. It was really cool to be able to talk with people back home (it’s a good thing that almost all of my extended family has Apple products). He really enjoyed it and kept commenting throughout the day on how amazed he was that we were able to do that in the middle of the ocean (yay Apple!).

I ordered a gluten free pizza for lunch and we took that upstairs and ate on my grandparents balcony. It’s awesome to just sit out there and watch the waves. It was really relaxing. We were talking for a while and eventually we all fell asleep. I decided to head back to my room and take a nap and watch some TV.

Later in the afternoon, my grandpa and I headed down for some tea. We sat on the balcony downstairs and talked for a while. I’m glad that our paces are pretty well matched – I really enjoy working out in the morning, then just taking the day slowly, napping, eating, and catching a show in the evening.

Tonight was formal night so that meant that we had to get dressed up. I really don’t like getting dressed in a suit but I bought this fun hat that I wore and it made it a little more manageable. People seemed to enjoy the hat. Dinner was delicious! I was glad to be able to actually eat dinner in the dinning room. The boat must have been calmer that evening (my grandpa attributed that to dancers performing that evening. He said that they intentionally try and keep it smooth or otherwise they have difficulty performing). We moved our dinner to six o’clock (it was previously at eight) and I was really happy about that. For one, eating dinner at eight and catching the ten o’clock show was very tiring. Now we’ll eat at six and catch the eight show, which should be way better. Also, they speed up the engines at night (which is most likely why I felt queazy last night), so the six o’clock dinner should be smoother.

Tonight was the first performance we were able to go to, and it was really great. It was a group of eight singers and dancers performing a verity of Broadway songs. I was surprised how good it was. The music was superb, there was lots of costume changes and the dancing was great.

The last big event of the evening was when I realized that after changing into my suit, I’d forgotten my room key! So I had to go back downstairs, call someone up to the front desk and go back upstairs to have them unlock my bedroom and finally get some sleep. Tomorrow will be our last day out at sea before we reach Cairns. We already booked our excursion, which will be a line rail ride over the rainforest. I’m looking forward to it!

Written by Tylor Skory

March 1st, 2012 at 11:09 am

Posted in Australia

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First Day at Sea

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Today was the first day at sea. I have international texting turned on for my phone and as we cruise around, my signal comes and goes. Around 5am, we passed into wireless signal and my phone connected and sent over a bunch of texts from my Facebook account of family and friends commenting on pictures I had posted the previous evening. So I spent a little time reading through those and eventually decided to chat with my family back home. Thankfully (really, thank god) the wifi reaches to my cabin. I was actually really surprised when I tried FaceTiming and got crystal clear picture 90% of the time. I attribute this to 1) Apple. Somehow they deigned a really efficient chat system. I’ve found the quality and reliability way better than Skype. 2) My room position. For example, my Grandparent’s cabin doesn’t get good enough Wifi to use. 3) The fact that most of the people on this ship are over 60 and most likely aren’t hogging the bandwidth.

The first thing I did was head to the deck and use their jogging track. It’s a small track the runs around the ship. It was actually really nice because it overlooked the morning ocean, had a nice cool breeze and was a fantastic view. I’ll definitely be using it each morning. After I was done, I went back to my cabin, showered and headed to breakfast. So far, it doesn’t really seem to be that busy on the boat. For such a small ship, I’d thought that everyone would be on top of each other but that hasn’t been the case. I was able to get a seat outside on the balcony and eat my breakfast watching the waves.

The rest of the day was pretty relaxed. I went back down for breakfast with my grandparents after they woke up. I was a bit tired (probably from the timzone difference). I definitely wouldn’t call it jet-lag though. Still, I went back to my cabin and watched some TV episodes I’d pre downloaded back home on my computer and then took a nap.

The boat has been pretty rocky today. I was kind of surprised. There was definitely a lot of movement. While I was sleeping, it was actually pretty relaxing. After my nap, we headed down for afternoon tea. Then I helped my grandpa with some computer stuff and we chatted for a while.

For dinner, we went to the dining room for the first time. Unfortunately, the dining room is situated in the back of the ship. The entire meal I was feeling queazy for the first time since getting on the ship. It was literally like trying to eat dinner while on the “Pirate Ship” ride at Cedar Point. I couldn’t see anything outside (because it was so dark) but I constantly felt the rising and falling motion in my stomach and couldn’t eat anything. I went back to my room early and got some rest. Once I was back in my cabin, I was feeling a bit better and was able to get to sleep quickly.

Written by Tylor Skory

February 29th, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Posted in Australia

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