We had decided some time ago to celebrate quietly by ourselves. We booked into the Sheraton Mirage at Port Douglas and made dinner reservations at Harrisons Restaurant inside the Sheraton. Harrisons is owned and operated by Spencer Patrick....the only hatted chef in Port Douglas.
We woke to a very bleak rainy day on our wedding anniversary but it never crossed our mind to cancel our reservations.
We left home after lunch and made our way very tenuously down the range. There were many landslides and trees across the way. We weaved our way in and around the debris and were relieved to make it to the bottom of the range.
As we continued on to Port the rain got much heavier and we were questioning whether we would actually make it as the creeks we crossed were rising very rapidly. Onwards we went and were relieved to finally arrive at the Sheraton. As we approached the check-in counter the staff were very surprised to see us and said "where did you come from?" . Apparently we were very lucky as every road in and out of Port was now closed.
After we checked in we were escorted to our room. The rain continued to tumble down and we had to wade through ankle deep water to reach our room! Our room was lovely but it was quite a waste to have a "swim out" room. We certainly didn't want or need to go for a swim! It was much nicer to stay in our cosy room and sip on the complimentary Champagne that the Sheraton had kindly given us to celebrate our wedding anniversary.
The rain had still not eased by the time we needed to walk to the restaurant for our dinner reservations. We once again removed our shoes and waded through the water. We made our way to the cocktail lounge where we sat back and enjoyed our cocktails while playing a game of Backgammon - we are addicts!
After cocktails we walked the short distance to Harrisons only to find this when we arrived......
It was such a disappointment but neither the chef or his staff could get to work as they were all flooded in. We knew that we had another restaurant choice so all was not lost. As we were shown to our table the waiter apologised in advance that there may be a wait for meals because they we also understaffed. As it turned out the wait was minimal.
Our meal was very tasty. I started with Oysters Kilpatrick while Philip chose the Bruschetta. Next course for me was Beef Cheeks whilst Philip chose the Pork. Neither of us could fit in dessert so we opted for a nightcap instead.
I can report that during dinner the rain eased so by the time we walked back to our room there wasn't any water to walk through. We were impressed at how fast it ran away.
The next morning we made our way back to the Restaurant for our complimentary buffet breakfast. What is it about buffet breakfasts. No matter where you go in the world they all look identical! As the sun was now shining we decided to take a walk along beautiful Four Mile Beach. What a shock it was to see it with so much debris brought in on the high tide. There was literally nowhere to walk so we headed back to get a few photos around the Sheraton pool area.
|The magnificent marble staircase the Pixie Skase designed|
Port Douglas had received 600mm of rain in 24 hours. There was a massive landslide on Flagstaff Hill that sent a deluge of muddy water down the hill and into many businesses in the main street. However I am pleased to report that the council staff worked overtime this past week to once again have Port Douglas spick and span for Easter.
Back home again we found our rain gauge overflowing. For the month of March we have had 1004 mm of rain......just over a metre. This is what we expect for a normal wet season but it is still a lot of rain!