When I heard the subject for October's Travel link up, hosted by Emma, Kelly, Rebecca and their guest host, Molly, I really had to wrack my brains as to what I would write about.
You see, the subject was the most interesting character you've met whilst travelling. Mr Silver and I spend most of our trips gazing romantically into each others eyes, oblivious to all of those around us (joke btw!). The occasional rather drunken chat with other couples makes little impression on my memory; the gap-year back packers that we met while touring Australia were forgettable and most tour guide encounters were so fleeting that we didn't have a chance to get their back story.
I toyed with writing about some of the amazing animal encounters that we've have...
But that wasn't quite on subject.
I asked Mr S what he thought I should write about and he suggested telling the tale of an Aboriginal encounter that we'd had whilst staying in the Great Barrier Reef. It was a brillant idea but unfortunately, I'd already told the story once before on my blog.
But that was before anyone had found my little space on the Internet...so I thought it wouldn't hurt to tell it again...with a few more details...
Though my style of travel involves a suitcase full of shoes rather than a backpack loaded with maps, water purifiers and a travel towel, I still like have an adventure. One problem with luxury travel is that you when you have incredible accommodation, fabulous service and very easy transportation the journey loses it's adventure. Having said that I'm a pretty nervous person: I have no head for heights, I hate creepy crawlies and I'm kind of scared of getting in the sea. Well you never know what lurks within...
As I've got older, I've tried to over come these fears by pushing myself out of my comfort zone in order to experience some of the incredible adventures and journeys that the countries I've visited have to offer.
While we in Queensland, Mr S and I arranged for tour of the beach but we had no idea what we were in for...
Meet Linc Walker.
Linc and his brother Brandon run the Kuku Yalanji Cultural Habitat Tours and offer a range of tours exploring fishing grounds of Cooya Beach, the national Parks of Port Douglas and the Mossman Gorge and Daintree River.
The brothers come from the Kuku Yalanji people who are indigenous to Australia and originate from the Rainforest regions of far North Queensland. Growing up in Britain, we learn little of Australian history and Mr S and I became fascinated by it during our five week trip to Oz. It was incredible to meet a 'real-life' aborigine and to hear more about his culture.
Today, Linc would be giving us a tour of Cooya Beach; the tour was really just an example of how Linc spends his daily life hunting, gathering and caring for the land. He has an incredibly strong determination to preserve his ancient culture and keep it relevant in the 21st century.
The morning started with us climbing into Linc's boat and speeding away to the mudflats and mangrove trees...
Despite pre-booking this experience we had no idea what was actually going to happen and we sped away from the shore listening to Linc explain about his culture and the local nature and wildlife. Occasionally he flung his spear in the water, trying to catch a fish for our lunch.
Soon we stopped at a dense area of Mangroves....
'Right everybody out' said Linc
But what about the crocodiles, sharks, and poisonous spiders....
'Ah, you'll probably be alright' said Linc.
Well and truly out of my comfort zone, I gingerly stepped into the water.
With mud and water up to my knees, this was not time to be a princess!
Angie, I can believe you're doing this! We usually see you swanning about in heels with a glass of champagne in your hand!!
Linc showed us the traditional way of gathering fish. That is sticking your hands into mud holes and foraging for mussels, clams and whelks. Well, I could forget about my manicure!
That being said, I had an absolutely fantastic time! The only thing I was scared of was a spider falling on to my head. But, that didn't happen. After gathering our spoils we headed back to the shore where Linc gave Mr Silver a lesson in how to throw a spear.
Linc's house was very close by and we headed back there and enjoyed damper (a type of Australian soda bread) while Linc prepared the shellfish that we'd caught for our lunch. As he prepared everything he showed us various artifacts that he had around his house as well as telling us even more about his culture.
So there you have it: the day Mr Silver and I met an aborigine and visited his house.
Have you ever pushed yourself out of your comfort zone while travelling?