Monday, May 14, 2007

Sorry, no koalas

There are less than a hundred thousand koalas in the wild, and they are all on the east coast. I am on the west coast of Australia. Hence, you won't see any koalas.

However, we spent last Wednesday and Thursday on Rottnest Island off the coast of Perth...

...where you can see quokkas!

Quokkas are pretty damned cute. Like all the native mammals, they are marsupial, somewhat similar to a small wallaby (though the Dutch thought they looked like rats, and named the island Rottenest — more recently shortened to Rottnest). They have few natural enemies and are not scared to beg, though it's unwise to feed them.

We got in some great snorkelling in two days on Rottnest. They have something like 18 beaches and it's not crowded at the moment, being autumn. I don't have any pictures of the snorkeling per se, but we saw an octopus, a huge catfish, a starfish, and a stingray the size of a small child. And lots of gorgeous fish.

We snorkeled at three beaches; here is one of them:

We saw this amazing lizard while hiking around. It appears to be a large black skink, but it is huge. It's the size of an Australian 'Stumpy' lizard, as big around as a juice glass, about a foot long from head to tail. He was absolutely gorgeous but my camera wasn't really up to the challenge. Here's the best I could do.

On the knitting front, I decided to go on to Ljod's sleeves and rip the back later. Fine, but I have to rip this sleeve back too. It's about 4" too long as the pattern is written. What is it with me? Do I have defective arms?

Not to be defeated, I started the second arm :-) I will try to knit it to the right length; then I'll know how far to rip back the first arm.



So glad to hear you're having such a good time! Love those crazy rat marsupials.

Best wishes on the knitting. With my current lace knitting, I cannot seem to complete 6 rows without some sort of muck up. However, the shawl in progressing somehow.

Jen said...

Heeheehee...giant marsupial rats! I love it!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you are having a great time. Great pictures! I love the quokka - too cute :)

Earin Marybird said...

Your arms reach your needles and the keyboard. They're just fine!

Thank you for the adorable photos. I wish I was snorkling with you. I've gone scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef so I have an idea of the wonderful things you're seeing.

I'm buying buttons for Claude today! Neckband and buttonbands are done!

Anonymous said...

I was fine until you got to the lizard being as big around as a juice glass. Sorry....that's, Lizards are not my thing.... especially big ones.

But the quokka is adorable! :)


Bex said...

While it would be tragic if a quokka fell into your luggage and you ended up bringing it home, I would willingly provide a home for it. No worries!

I'm glad you're having a good time with all the critters!

April said...

Will you bring me back a quokka?!?!?!?!