Last week we ventured to the Daintree, a large area of preserved and very biodiverse rainforest. We drove through flooded roads, crossed the Daintree on a ferry. We saw fan palm forests and type 1b forests (low elevation complex mesophyll vine!), saw orange footed scrub fowl and a real life saltwater crocodile. We stayed in a hostel where we all slept in platform tents with mosquito net canopies. We ate exotic fruits (mangosteen seen above) from an Australian fruit farmer who had hiked the Appalachian trail, ironic seeing that most of us had just read A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson. We saw a mangrove forest, played rubgy on the beach, and didn’t see a cassowary but did see cassowary poop. Our professor Siggy showed us her house in the middle of the rainforest, which had a composting toilet on the porch (why not?) and had solar power. Mossman gorge was the best and most magical swimming hole we found so far.
We came back from the Daintree and went straight to Cairns. It rained the whole weekend, and then came home to watch it pour rain for a solid 48 hours, never letting up. We slowly watched as the access road and the path to our cabins turned into a small stream. Before we knew it, large amounts of rocks and gravel came down the hill onto our verandas and flooded our eating area, the lawns, and finally our classroom was under 5 inches of water. Only in Australia do you have lecture canceled to dig yourself out of your home with 12 hoes, 1 shovel, and 2 broken wheelbarrows, then get the satisfaction of ripping out the entire floor of your classroom.