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March 9, 2020
Not Adelaide, Australia: A Walk on the Beach

Russell writes…

Gail was looking forward to today’s port of Adelaide. Even though we wouldn’t arrive until 3:00 pm, we would be staying here overnight. Gail talked about renting a car, driving out into the country and staying at a local hotel. She was therefore shocked when Russell reported that we were not actually docking in Adelaide.

Instead, we would be docking in Outer Harbor, a tiny coastal town about half an hour away from Adelaide. What’s more, there would be no shuttle bus into the city. If we wanted to go to Adelaide, we would need to take the train or a taxi.

Several other factors affected our plans. Today was Labor Day in this part of Australia, and many locations would be closed. This week was the annual Fringe Festival in Adelaide, and the city would be overrun with people. And we didn’t actually get cleared to leave the ship until after 3:30 pm.

For all of these reasons, we decided not to try to go to Adelaide today. Instead, we started taking a walk to explore Outer Harbor itself. Several other passengers told us the town is trying to develop an artsy tourist infrastructure. We walked for about half an hour and didn’t see anything. We turned around and were almost back to the ship, when we saw a map posted on a signpost. Apparently, there was a beach nearby.

So we changed directions and walked through a residential neighborhood. We met several of the locals and stopped to chat. Sure enough, if we kept walking, we would come to a calm beach between two breakwaters.

We ended up spending several hours at this quiet, beautiful and sparsely populated beach that seemed to be tucked away. We saw something we have never seen at a beach before – the sand was literally covered with small objects that looked like a cross between an American football, a coconut and a Star Trek tribble.

Gail discovers a hidden beach

The beach was covered with strange-looking objects

They looked like hairy footballs

We stopped some more locals and learned that the objects are “tapeweed seaweed balls.” They form when seaweed rolls around in the water and accumulates layers of fiber. Who knew?

We met several more locals walking various dogs, and we made several new friends. We spent hours poking around, looking at seashells. And we enjoyed a marvelous, sunny afternoon at the beach.

Chatting with the locals

A walk on the beach

We were able to secure a last-minute dinner table for two at the premium Prime 7 restaurant. We said a final good-bye to the incredible entertainers we have met on this segment of the cruise. Pianist Carl Doy, virtuoso Danny Elliott and comedian Scott Williams are all departing tomorrow.

And tomorrow, we hope to take a train into Adelaide.

Carl Doy with Happy the Hedgehog (that’s Carl’s wife Kath in the background)

With Scott Williams, Danny Elliott and Danny’s mum Julie

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