A Western Australian saga.

drron

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On Sunday morning we again went for a short drive.By now all roads out of Geraldton had been closed.We stopped at the Catholic cathedral.A little OTT.
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Across the road a nice park which was sometimes my lunch place when working at the hospital.
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drron

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Time for lunch and we went to the Murchison Tavern.Good value with a WA pinot gris.
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Mrsdrron had the garlic prawns which she liked.
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Whilst I had the crayfish at $45.
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One of the nearby restaurants was taking things seriously.
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Time for us to go back to the Mantra as not allowed to be out driving after 1400.
 

OZDUCK

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Lots of sea weed and starting to get more cloudy.
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Just along from here was a beach which sounded like it would be suitable for me.Whimps beach.But we continued on back through town with a few buildings.
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And the Customs House which is still being used.
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View attachment 245854 Custom House.
The last time I was in that Customs House was about 1996 - makes me feel about as old as the building,
 
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drron

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After getting back to the Mantra a group of miners had just checked in.They wasted no time getting the BBQ fired up and putting a couple of slabs on ice.looked like they were settling in for a long night.We had a chat with them and then took a walk around the marina.Certainly beginning to look like a cyclone coming.
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A replica of the Batavia longboat.
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There were literally hundreds of butterflies on the frangipanis.
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drron

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Then we settled in for the night awaiting the cyclone.
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Notice in the last pic that there are no lights.power went out ~2100.
As far as cyclones etc that we have experienced this was probably the least significant.That was because Geraldton was on the south side of the cyclone as it went past.Maximum wind for only ~ 30 minutes.
 

drron

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Awaking on Monday morning to total power loss in Geraldton and no mobile phone reception.Fortunately the Mantra wifi was still operating/It was now obvious there was no way of getting to Exmouth so needed to book another 2 nights in Geraldton.There were 2 options only looking at booking.com,wotif and TA.The Gerald hotel at $260 a night or a backpackers at $360 a night.Didn't have to think hard.
Before checking out from the Mantra went for a walk of the local area.
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This was the only damage I spotted.
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And the Rubik's cube loos.
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drron

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So after checking out we did a driving tour of Geraldton.Lots of fallen tree branches but only a few large trees totally down with some falling across fences.We drove to the northern,eastern and southern limits of Geraldton and saw no major damage or power lines down.Oddly some traffic lights were working on the southern approaches but all businesses including service stations were closed.

So after that checked into the Gerald.Only a 5th floor room available and as no power there were no lifts.Internet only available in the lobby.N=the restaurants and coffee bar closed and of course no hot water.
The room.Odd shape but it was the old Telstra building before being converted to a hotel.
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And views.
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And the corellas in their favourite trees.
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drron

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Sunset on the Monday night.
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Tuesday morning I went out for a walk around town walking up to Batavia Park and back.Interesting indigenous art opposite Batavia Park.
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Then some of the buildings.Quite a few older buildings some done up tastefully others not so much.
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drron

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The old Union bank now Government offices.I liked the Member for Geraldton's name.
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That is the jewellers that Mrsdrron had bought online from and we would see their pearl farm on the cruise.
 

drron

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Late Tuesday morning and things looked grim.Staying on the 5th floor of a hotel with no power,no hot water and no operating food outlets plus all restaurants,supermarkets and convenience stores closed.We were down to half a bottle of white wine,some nut bars and a box of Maltesers.Mrsdrron got a call from one of the crew on the Eco-Abrolhos asking if we would like to board that day as they had a generator hence internet,hot water and food.Oh yes please.They confirmed that by about 1500.

I had gone down to reception earlier and told them off the possibility that we would be checking out and boarding our cruise ship early.When it came to check out they said that they would refund the next 2 nights -we originally had booked the Gerald on the night before the cruise.Fantastic service again from the WA tourist sector.

So off we went to the ship.It meant we were able to put all our luggage on board as we now were cruising out and back rather than fly one way.I had to drop the car back at Avis and their only depot was at the airport.I hadn't been able to fill up as still no service station openSo the one operator that I lost out on was Avis as I still had to pay their prices on filling the car.
One of the crew drove out to the airport as well and brought me back to the ship.Fantastic service.

So the view.
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And the sunset.
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And instead of a nut bar and Maltesers dinner was crayfish with a piece of steak. and dessert.
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drron

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Just a little about Kalbarri's fate.First the picture on the front page of the Geraldton newspaper,We believe the complex at the top and centre right was where we were going to stay.
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And from the local TV news.
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Obviously a far more devastating blow than in Geraldton.
 

drron

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The last views of Geraldton.
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And the first view of the Abrolhos -Eadt Wallabi Island.Anchored here as the majority of pax were being flown in here in the afternoon.
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This island is known as one of the high islands.
 

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