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I am a writer, editor, reviewer and dance teacher based in Perth, Western Australia.

My books

The first two novels of my trilogy, The Talismans, are not available as e-books at present, but I expect to get them back online shortly. However, I do have paperbacks of The Dagger of Dresnia at the low price of $25 including postage within Australia. I also have a short story, 'La Belle Dame', in print - see Mythic Resonance below. The best way to contact me is via Facebook!

Buy The Talismans

The first two books of The Talismans trilogy were published by Satalyte Publications, which, sadly, has gone out of business. I hope to see my books back on Amazon under a new publisher in the near future.

The Dagger of Dresnia

The Dagger of Dresnia
Want a copy? Contact me at satimafn(at)gmail.com

The Cloak of Challiver

The Cloak of Challiver
Available again as an ebook soon!

Mythic Resonance

Buy Mythic Resonance

Mythic Resonance is an excellent anthology that includes my short story 'La Belle Dame', together with great stories from Alan Baxter, Donna Maree Hanson, Sue Burstynski, Nike Sulway and nine more fantastic authors! Just $US3.99 from Amazon. Got a Kindle? Check out Mythic Resonance.

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Places I've lived: Manchester, UK

Places I've lived: Manchester, UK

Places I've lived: Gippsland, Australia

Places I've lived: Gippsland, Australia

Places I've lived: Geelong, Australia

Places I've lived: Geelong,  Australia

Places I've lived: Tamworth, NSW

Places I've lived: Tamworth, NSW

Places I've Lived - Sydney

Places I've Lived - Sydney
Sydney Conservatorium - my old school

Places I've lived: Auckland, NZ

Places I've lived: Auckland, NZ

Places I've Lived: Mount Gambier

Places I've Lived: Mount Gambier
Blue Lake

Places I've lived: Adelaide, SA

Places I've lived: Adelaide, SA

Places I've Lived: Perth by Day

Places I've Lived: Perth by Day
From Kings Park

Places I've lived: High View, WV

Places I've lived: High View, WV

Places I've lived: Lynton, Devon, UK

Places I've lived: Lynton, Devon, UK

Places I've lived: Braemar, Scotland

Places I've lived: Braemar, Scotland

Places I've lived: Barre, MA, USA

Places I've lived: Barre, MA, USA

Places I've Lived: Perth by Night

Places I've Lived: Perth by Night
From Kings Park

Inner Peace Blog

Inner Peace Blog
Awarded by Joanna Fay. Click on the image to visit her lovely website!

Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award
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Fabulous Blog Award
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Monday, 13 April 2015

Sailing the Top End





My recent silence has been due to an exciting adventure! I have been on a cruise around the Top End of Australia with my sister, Anne, aboard the lovely Dawn Princess.

We left Sydney on March 24 to travel the 5,517 nautical miles to Perth, calling at seven ports en route. First up was Brisbane, apparently a tricky port to manoeuvre as it involves sailing up the Brisbane River and under a bridge. We spent a pleasant day ashore before setting off again to see more of Queensland’s lovely coast. Airlie Beach was the next port, and I did a bit of self-indulgent shopping. Port Douglas was next, but we decided not to go ashore as the tender was slow to get going and the sea looked very rough.

Three days' sailing brought Dawn Princess to Darwin, a town I have always wanted to visit. Darwin is the Northern Territory’s gateway to South-East Asia. Having been almost entirely rebuilt twice, once due to Japanese air raids during World War II, and again after being devastated by Cyclone Tracy in 1974, Darwin is now a very modern city. With its tiny population of less than 140,000, it hardly seems big enough to be any kind of capital, yet we were deeply impressed by the lovely art gallery and museum, which kept us engrossed for several hours. Boasting a fine Aboriginal art collection and several important works by French Impressionists, the gallery is, on a smaller scale, as notable as that of any other capital city. Funnily enough, Anne and I had been watching a TV series on the Impressionists on the TV in our ship’s cabin, so we felt very virtuous at having done some homework before studying the sketches and paintings in the gallery.

We had four days at sea before the next port, Broome, which lies many miles around the coast from Darwin. En route, we cruised the impressive Kimberley Coast, which is over 12,000 kilometres long, and is fringed by more than 2,500 islands. There is nowhere in all that stretch for a large ship to dock, but we were entranced by the beautiful scenery.

With the help of a local pilot, Dawn Princess moored at Broome well before lunchtime on 4 April, allowing us a full afternoon of adventures ashore. (For ‘adventures’ read ‘shopping’!) We had a lovely time there, much of it spent eating and drinking! That night there was total eclipse of the moon, and we had an excellent view from the window of Dawn Princess’s dining room.

Then came the highlight of the trip – a run up to Lombok, one of the islands of our northern neighbour, Indonesia. Right next door to the better-known island of Bali, Lombok is relatively unspoilt. On the debit side, that means there are few amenities, and we spent a lot of time in a bus that took an hour to travel up to the town of Senggigi on the island’s west coast. We were left to our own devices for three hours before our coach picked us up for the return journey to the ship. Senggigi has the makings of a lovely tourist spot but it has a way to go before this potential is realised.

Three days of leisurely sailing brought us to Perth, seventeen days after our departure from Sydney. In that short time, we made friends with other passengers and came to love the crew, whose kindness and unfailing good humour were a credit to Dawn Princess. We even had daily exercise classes under the watchful eyes of the ship’s dancers, who doubled as teachers. Apropos, all the entertainers were utterly delightful. The Alegria Strings from Ukraine entertained us almost nightly. If you checkout their site you will see a pic of them playing in the 'Atrium' of one of Dawn's sister ships when it was 'christened' by the Duchess of Cambridge. There were excellent theatre shows on the remaining evenings. I even got to perform one night, when the ‘Pop Choir’, led by the very talented musician and dancer Simon Chilvers, sang as part of a passengers’ talent evening. We’d been practising hard but I still felt a bit scared when confronted by my very own microphone to sing a few lines of ‘I will follow him’ before about a thousand people!

We docked at Fremantle seventeen days after leaving Sydney, and Anne spent the weekend with me in Perth before heading off back to her home in Mount Gambier, South Australia. I am now feeling quite let down, even depressed, but I’m sure that within a few days I will have perked up, feeling happy to be home after a great adventure!

6 comments:

Jo said...

Sounds like a great trip. I remember a friend visiting that part of Oz and one place where they found black pearls. She bought some earrings. I was so jealous.

Now I am jealous of your trip.

Satima Flavell said...

Yes, there are street hawkers peddling pearls of all kinds, some of them black and very beautiful. However, there are many fake ones and I hesitated to buy from a hawker.

Jo said...

Yes, you are right not to do so, pity though. I would love to have a/some black pearl/s.

Satima Flavell said...

They are lovely. Perhaps you can find a reputable dealer online.

Pearce8 said...

Thanks for sharing, Satima .... Steve.

Satima Flavell said...

I'm looking forward to seeing your blog when it gets going, Steve!

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