in Australia, Trips
Thanks to Linux.conf.au 2014 in Perth, Jennifer and I got to go to Perth this year (second time for me after a first trip to Perth in 2003).
Due to merely asking, and some super nice pilots in the B747 we were taking from SFO to Sydney, the captain not only let me sit in his chair, but even took the picture for me :)
After a dinner and night in Perth, we took an early private flight to Monkey Mia and Shark Bay. Putting the price aside (flying in Australia is not cheap), the owner unfortunately used the flight to check out one of his pilots, so we had an extra person in the plane which does not have much room, and we did a long 3H-ish flight in the cramped back seats of a Mooney. It was pretty miserable, but we got to Monkey Mia eventually. Unfortunately we got there too late for the last dolphin beach sighting of the day, so having arrived there after missing the main attraction was a bit disappointing.
I've flown the slightly faster version of this plane, I don't consider it a 4 seater
but we had 4 of us inside, it probably stretched the allowed payload
this board told us that we'd likely be out of luck for seeing dolphins that day
the dolphins swimming close to shore, but not interested in coming to see us
so we had a very expensive $100 burger (pilot saying)
actually we got lucky and saw some wild emus
Next, we flew to Hamelin Pool to see Stromatolites by Shark Bay. Those cool organisms are now believed to have created part or most of the oxygen on earth, some 2 billion years ago. Unfortunately they helped create most of the animal life that exists on earth today, and in turn the fishes apparently though they tasted good and ate most of them. The few surviving ones are there because they are in very salty water that most sea animals don't like, and that's the case in Shark Bay:
this looks a bit dry, and it sure was hot and dry
After long flight back, I snapped a few pictures from Perth:
this wild kangaroo didn't seem to mind.
Naval museum and Fremantle in the back
Some pictures of Perth University:
the women are not impressed, tough crowd
During the conference, one early morning, I went for a walk in the big park between Perth University and downtown Perth:
but they could be bought with food easily :)
As for Perth itself, I didn't have any time to go visit it until the last evening after my flight in the B747 Simulator at Perth Flight Experience
I do have a few pictures from around the University where we had the conference, though:
And the university:
Jennifer and I walked around town a bit, had dinner, and got ready for our flight the next day to Christmas Island to see crabs and to dive