Sunday, October 30, 2011

Day 7 (Part 2): Flames of the Forest!

After the awesome day on the reef, I couldn't believe my fortune - the day was not over!!! Phoebe and I had jam packed the day with the best of Australian culture and experience. Out next stop was a culinary experience like non-other:


It is a dining experience hidden away in the forest under a romantically lit tent, surrounded by the sounds of the rainforest, and warmed by candlelight.
Actually it wasn't very warm at all, but no matter, it was an incredible experience of Australian foods, aboriginal music, and mystical storytelling.

Upon arriving back to the house from our day at sea, Phoebe and I cleaned up and got fancy. In light of the cool evenings, we couldn't get super fancy and had to think about warmth... most of the evening my outfit was covered by a coat. In order to properly capture the attire, we took photos before leaving the house.
Classy ladies
Liam had taken the car to the Paramedics station, so he had to drive us into town in the Ambulance. It was my first time in an ambulance, so of course I wanted to ride on the gurney... Phoebe even strapped me in so I could get the full affect. Best. Car ride. Ever!

I needed to feel like it was more authentic
We met a shuttle in Port Douglas that would take us the rest of the way into the Rainforest. It was so dark as we moved away from the town and honestly there was something inside me that feared they were just luring us into the middle of nowhere to kill us. Luckily the trees thinned just slightly to reveal a torch-lit walkway. We got off the shuttle and walked to the staging area where we were handed champagne and offer hor deurvs. It was the classiest dining experience I'd ever had. On the lawn near the bar where we waited to be escorted to our tables was a beautiful iron candlabra.

After we had mingled for a bit (or in Phoebe and mine's case, were antisocial for a bit), a didgeridoo sounded a little ways away. Then a man dressed in traditional Aboriginal garb greeted us in his native tongue and ushered us to the dining tent.
Rainforest trees

The dining tent
The set up for the meal was family style, so we were forced to be kind and mingle with the other guests. Phoebe and I enjoy the company of each other enough that we find it hard to join in any other conversation but our own, but we tried our best and got to know some lovely people.

The food was delicious and I was so excited to get to try Barramundi (Australian cod) and Kangaroo loin. Truly an Austrlian style cuisine.
Our menu

Kangaroo loin
Phoebe and I marveled at the beauty of the place and decided that Phoebe HAD to get married there one day.
After our meal had been thoroughly enjoyed we were entertained by a traditional Aboriginal Dream-time Story.

The dream-time story telling

The beautiful backdrop to our story
This story was about the Platypus and basically went like this:

Long long ago there was a female duck who fell in love with Mr. Rat. It was a forbidden love and the two were outcasts from their communities. The two lovers had children and when the female duck returned to her family to introduce them to her beloved children, they were rejected and seen as unnatural. They were in fact the Platypus.

Of course the story was much more epically told and the man who told it walked around the tent as we all closed our eyes and listened, so it seemed the story came from all around. It was magical. The coolest part was when they turned all the lights off so we could be in darkness and listen to the sounds of the rainforest, then they turns on a light of sorts that projected what looked like a million stars all around us. It seriously took my breath away.
A picture with the aboriginal men who hosted our evening.
This was probably my favorite day of the whole trip. I got to swim in the ocean and see one of the natural wonders of the world. I then finished the night being emersed in Aboriginal culture and eating delicious food in one of the most beautiful venues I've ever seen.

1 comment:

Abi said...

You are gorgeous, and this place seems unreal in its epic wonder!