I spent 3 months in Australia.

That is Luna, Jackie's dog and I am wearing my Akubra. The only hat I have ever worn that did not look like absolute ass on me. I still have it. Needs a visit to the hattery though.

Excerpt from journal dated May 17, 1998 - Daintree Rainforest & Cape Tribulation Tropical Research Station:
I had lunch and then went to the Bat House. It was right across the street! very convenient. I met Brigitta who was staffing the center. I told her I emailed Hugh back in November about coming as a volunteer. We had a wonderful chat and she told me where to find Hugh and that the track was muddy. I put on my boots and headed back to the research center to find him. It was a very humid day!

I met Hugh. He looks just like a nature boy. He is late 50's and very nice. He told me the students had all left and it was too wet to do any of the building projects. Not delayed by a few days, but too wet for probably months now. So I won't be able to help them out.

He took me to the bat enclosure. About 25 bats in residence and all but 1 are fruit bats. Spectacled Flying Fox. They are sooooo cute!. These bats were very social and appeared to have stereoscopic vision. They are not sonar based like other bats. In fact, they are placental mammals and are a lower primate! We walked into the enclosure and they all started to chatter and clamber toward Hugh.

They hung upside down. Their genitalia are highly visible. When they urinate they just flip over so they don't wet themselves. Hugh scratched their bellies. They loved that. They look like a "regular" mammal except for the bat wings. Furry cute little things.

I scratched a couple on their bellies and head. They are delightful, very friendly and inquisitive. One kept fingering my hair and almost got me in my good eye by accident with her thumb. Totally cool animals! All of them are permanent residents for one reason or another. Two of them only have one wing.

Hugh and I chatted for a bit about the differences between the USA and Australia, especially around media coverage. World news in the USA is crap. The SBS has a fantastic international program channel.