Friday 25th September 2015 – Monday 28th September 2015
I’m alive! I made it safely out of the other side of the Gagaju Bush Camp, a brilliant 2 day 3 night canoeing/camping experience run by ‘John the Machine’ (real name Andy). John the Machine (or JtM for short) it was decided, is actually a robot who cares about nothing but money (payment was demanded before we had even arrived in camp), cares not for our safety (we were sent off canoeing by ourselves and everything was at our own risk) and lives life for his tour of camp with crazy sidekick Kimmie.
I LOVED this weekend! The group I was with were the perfect mix of social, fun and slight mentalness which made for such a laugh both when out canoeing and back at the camp. For the first night we were to stay in lodges on home made bunk beds (a tin shed with some material slung between wooden posts with a sleeping bag thrown over a yoga mat): not exactly the most comfortable night sleep I’ve ever endured, and it wasn’t about to get any comfier! For our second and third nights, after full days of canoeing up rivers, we would setting down in tents on the forest floor, cosy!
On the first day canoeing John the Machine (JtM) sent us off into the ‘very strong south-eastily winds’ to a thrilling campsite. I recall our first words upon landing being “what now” (which I’m sure is any explorers first words upon discovering land). But a few minutes later, the crazy Swedish sisters had come up with a jungle game which required calling out animal noises in order until someone missed theirs or made the wrong noise (oh Tarzan!), and I kid you not we played for two hours, and later turned this into a drinking game! Then it was decided that we were to find the rope swing JtM had told us about (at your own risk though, the water might be shallow who knows) and so we set off into the river. And that’s when Lee cut his foot open on something sharp on the river bed. Cue blood everywhere and a view right into Lee’s foot. Delicious. And JtM was of course absolutely useless, telling us that there wasn’t a road to where we were and so he couldn’t take Lee to hospital. Lucky for Lee two men rocked up and whisked them off to hospital: 10 stitches later Lee is back in one piece!
On the second day of canoeing JtM sent us the opposite way up the river (also into strong South-Eastily winds) to a lake where we were told it would be shallow we would have to get out and pull the canoes along. Only, this was at our own risk as Sting Rays like to roam the shallow waters and so were to stick our paddles into the water or risk standing on a barb, a sure fire way to end up in hospital with a hefty insurance bill. So we avoided putting any feet in the water at all costs and instead stopped as an island for lunch around a campfire we had built before setting off back to camp. Not a sting ray in sight.
And so as the sun set on our final night in Gagaju I can honestly say I am kinda sad to be back in civilisation now but we shall see what Noosa brings over the next couple of days before I head towards Fraser Island!