Friday, April 13, 2007

Just got back from houseboating in The Murray River in Moama, Echuca this afternoon. A very interesting and different trip, but one that I would say suited me perfectly. My idea of a holiday is to go somewhere and sit in the hotel room, instead of being 'forced' to walk around and go sightseeing, and this trip was perfect for that. We spent most of the day and nights in the houseboat, and could only go on land when we moored by the river side, but usually we moor at some secluded area anyway.

There were no set plans that we must do this or do that, and that was good for me as well. There was one afternoon when my friends decided to explore the Boora Boora Wildlife Reserve - which was basically a huge expanse of land, and you could see animals if you looked hard enough - and I decided to stay on the boat and read my storybook and take an afternoon nap. Apparently they saw kangaroos. ;p

Some of us tried their hand at fishing, albeit unsuccessfully. Some 'seasoned pros' who drove by on their speedboats gave us some advice, like putting some cheese on the bait, and gave us some bigger hooks as well, others even gave us the cheese, and in the end someone actually gave us a whole fish that they caught. The fish ended up on the dinner table.

The houseboat was basically an apartment floating on the river. Four double beds, 4 bathrooms, 3 bed-sofas, 2 refrigerators, a television (with SBS for Champions League hoho), and a washing machine that could not be found (either it wasn't there or it was really well hidden). It also went one step better than an average apartment with a BBQ pit and a jacuzzi on the top deck.

It was not till the last full day of the trip that we actually moored at The Port of Echuca and some of us took a bus to the horse ranch, where 2 of the girls tried horse riding. For the more cowardly of us, we had a go at archery and a mini golf thingy. We had bought enough food with us onto the boat to cook and last us the trip, but we had to make a final trip to Safeway to get the necessary ingredients for our final 2 meals.

Another thing worth mentioning was that when we got on the boat, only 2 out of the 9 of us knew how to play bridge. Jiawei (the only other person that knew how to play bridge) brought 2 decks of cards with him and all of them were just playing Big 2. After learning to play bridge last year in Melaka, I've since decided that Big 2 is just so much less interesting than bridge (or some variant of it), and when I was dragged into playing a Big 2 game with them while on the boat, I got Jiawei to help me teach them how to play bridge.

Taught Carol and Elaine, they got hooked, then got them to pull Chungyew into it as well. James learnt it quite fast, and Ganesh was the next to get into the game. The rest of the free time we had we were playing bridge like there was no tomorrow. On the final night, we got Darren into it, and the last to learn was Francis, a guy from China, who said, "我觉得比Big 2好玩。"

And so we spent the last night playing bridge, and the next morning as well when waiting for the cab, and the bus. Woohoo awesome. I envision a day where bridge will be as popular as Big 2 amongst Asians and maybe whenever we whip out a pack of cards everybody will play bridge.

And that was that.

And some pictures, of course. And then I'm off.

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3 comments:

youngyew said...

Great trip, great post, great pictures, and great promotion for bridge! I like bridge too!

crushedguava said...

from bridge we can move on to 500.

youngyew said...

Huh?