We're off to the Great Barrier Reef on a perfectly sunny day...


We were shocked to see the reasonable price on this exquisite arrangement at only AUD $20, USD $14.20.  Our daughter and family had sent us a similar bouquet sent to us in Hawaii, most likely at 10 times this price.
With bad weather heading to Queensland, we were concerned we go on yet another long boat ride only to be sitting drenched in our rain jackets.  To date, we've had numerous less-than-successful boating excursions throughout the world.

On whale watching expeditions, we'd yet to see a whale within photo taking distance.  On sunset cruises, its rained such as was the case one year ago on the Seine River in Paris.

There is a wide array of both common and less common fruits and vegetables at Rusty's Market.
On other boat tours we've been disappointed with rough seas so bad we could easily have booked a ride on a roller coaster for an equal amount of rattling and commotion.  Also, we've seldom sighted the marine life we've anticipated during a boat tour, unable to take good photos as the boat rocked to and fro.

Hopefully, today's excursion to Green Island in the Great Barrier Reef will prove to be more fulfilling and less about a crazy boat ride and more about scenery that awaiting us. 

The sign is marked, "spray free, custard apples" priced at AUD $4.50, USD $3.19 per kilo (2.2 pounds)
With all the cruises we've taken with many more to come, its obvious we enjoy being on (as opposed to in) the ocean.  In our past lives, we both were avid boaters owning boats for a majority of our adult lives.

As a single mom at 29 years old I purchased my first boat which I kept docked in St. Albans Bay on Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota USA. It was called the Tootsie Roll Boat due to it brown, orange and white colors. 

More traditional fruits and vegetables including corn, oranges, tomatoes, zucchini and cucumbers.
Tom purchased his first boat at 29, an Alumacraft fishing boat and later purchased a ski and fishing boat, an Fisher Sweet 16, when he was around 30 years old. 

Some of the vendor's displays occupied huge areas in the market while others are as tiny as a card table.
As a result of our past experience we both generally have enjoyed being on the water and thus have booked some type of boating tour in most countries where we've been close to water.

What?  Chocolate pudding fruit?  Sounds interesting.  Priced at AUD $3.50, USD $2.48 per kilo.
As a result of the past boat tours in our world travels, our expectations are in check, hoping for a good experience.  Realizing that most of our upcoming photos of marine life in the Great Barrier Reef will be taken through glass we don't expect perfect representations of what lies below.  We'll definitely do our best to take good photos.

Another equally affordable bouquet of locally grown flowers.
This morning we awakened to a bright sunny day adding to our mutual enthusiasm to finally see one of the world's greatest treasures.  In posts over the next few days, we'll be included historic and geographical information on the Great Barrier Reef with facts nature lovers may find interesting.

Fresh flowers are scattered throughout the market, adding to a colorful visual.
Our beach bag is packed and we're set to go other than a necessary stop along the way to the pier in Cairns to purchase bottled water.  Much to our delight, we've been able to drink tap water in Trinity Beach without any intestinal problems. 

At only AUD $3, USD $2.31 each, a gorgeous bouquet could be put together for a reasonable price.
Its the container for our iced tea that we're lacking that a large bottle of plain water will provide.  Once in hand, we'll add the packets of iced tea we've been hauling  around the world with us and be set for beverages for the entire trip.

Today, we're posting the final photos of our visit to Rusty's Market and look forward to posting our photos and stories of our tour to Australia's Great Barrier Reef. 
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Photo from one year ago today, August 26, 2014:

The Regency Hotel, Queen's Gate, where we stayed for two weeks while in South Kensington, London, UK was under construction.  Noise with a cluttered entrance at times didn't bother us at all.  What we found most inconvenient was their wifi policy charging huge daily fees for a poor connection.  Later in our stay, we were able to get the hotel manager to waive all of our wifi fees for the 16 nights.  For more details, please click here.


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