After the trip to Fraser Island, I went back to Noosa for a night to catch up with some people and do my laundry! Unsurprisingly, I ended up playing Mario Kart.
My next stop, annoyingly, was somewhere I didn't want to go but had to, due to the bus I was on. There are compulsory overnight stops and one of these is Rainbow Beach. Rainbow Beach sounds like Rainbow Road, which is arguably the hardest Mario Kart track (aside from Wario's Gold Mine, but this is debatable). I was hoping this meant the location would be exciting and full of Italian plumbers, talking mushrooms and hungry dinosaurs, but it wasn't at all. In fact, it was a very dull, one-horse town with a beach full of "multicoloured" (i.e. brown) sand. Ho hum. I made some dinner, took it easy and finished my book.
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I passed through the Town of 1770 and Airlie Beach (pictured below, yes it was overcast and not very warm at all) in the next few days, in order to get to Townsville.
Two snafus made this a more difficult journey than I'd anticipated.
Snafu #1: 1770 is a complete DUMP and the hostel I'd booked into was like Guantanamo Bay, minus the repeat plays of the Barney theme tune (and obviously the waterboarding, which for the purposes of UK media law MAY NOT HAVE HAPPENED AT GUANTANAMO BAY, IT'S ALL JUST UNSUBSTANTIATED RUMOUR).
Snafu #2: I totally missed my bus from Airlie Beach to Townsville, so had to pay again for a replacement ticket, then had a big homesickness barf when I got there.
Anyway. Turns out, Townsville is actually really cute. You can't get more of a generic name than Townsville. As it happens, this quiet little um, town in Queensland has a slightly student/bohemian vibe, making it a touch more interesting than the numerous beach um, towns on the east coast.
Townsville's not even a beach town, though (I'm totally shift+F7-ing the shit out of this blog entry now so as not to use the word town too much) - it's the jumping-off point if you want to visit Magnetic Island (more about that later). It's pretty quiet, with a cute market on Saturday (or Sunday, I can't recall which; constant travelling means you forget what day it is and rarely know the date) at which I bought some nice earrings. Yes, I'm that interesting. I also did a bit more running around the, ahem, municipality.
Not much more to say, except from the fact Townsville (damn I just said town again. And again) is where my super-duper, nearly-new, beloved black Berghaus fitted fleece jacket disappeared, never to have been seen since. Gutted. Oh and I met a guy there who had lived in the apartment block opposite Hannah and I in Salford. Small word, insert cliché here, etc etc…