This part of the day was actually the very last thing to be organised. It was the final piece of the puzzle which put my mind at rest about the whole day.
Initially, the day was organised without this. We would drive to lunch, then drive up to the accomodation at Jonahs. But something was still missing. I only finalised the Seaplane in the last 2 weeks leading up to the proposal. Everything was already organised, but I just couldn’t feel at peace. Something was still missing…. The whole day was already way over budget, and I’ve organised everything I had planned. So what could be missing?
After giving it further thought I came to realise that it probably revolved around the method of transit. Just plain old vanilla driving…. pretty boring. My first thought to get around that was to hire a fancy car. Limo was out of the question, it just didn’t seem to fit in. Next I thought about renting a luxury car. Then realised Erica was brought up driving luxury cars, her dad has a Porsche for crying out loud!! So that was out the window. I then looked at convertibles…. but drew more blanks there.
Nothing seemed to fit. I started to think of alternate methods of transportation. Initially I thought I would settle finally on chartering a private boat, but then remembered that Sydney had Seaplanes flying to and from the northern area. After thinking a bit more about the seaplane idea, I realised that this was it. This was the final chapter in the days itinary. It would be a huge surprise, and she would never ever guess. Plus she shares my same passion for stunning scenery, and loves heights.
On further research, I found out that most of the Seaplane Charters do flights to and from Palm Beach, where our accomodation was located. And that the guesthouse can organise to pick us up from the Seaplane dock and take us there. Perfect!! This was it, I finally could rest in the knowledge that there was nothing else I could possibly fit into the day to make it anymore special, short of throwing a puppy in there somewhere!
But there was one little problem that cropped up as a result of the seaplane idea. And that was the logistics of the return trip. How on earth do we get home the next day? Catching a taxi home from Jonahs would cost an absolute fortune. The best and most effective solution would involve me somehow leaving my car there on Friday night, so I can then drive back on Sunday afternoon. But how?
I checked the public transport arrangements for that area and they were woeful. Almost none to speak off, and would take me close to 3 hours to get home. Also another issue, I have given my own car to my parents because I have a company car. However I’d not supposed to use it for personal use. And the distance driving to and from Jonahs would raise some eyebrows at work. I needed my own car. But how? I lived with Erica, we only had her car, my company car, and it would be very hard to do any vehicular juggling without her suspecting something!
After tossing a few ideas around, I spoke to my manager and took a half day off work on Friday. I then drove to my parents house, dropped off my work car and picked up my own car, picked up the ring (which I kept there for safe keeping), and drove back home. I then parked it down the street to make sure Erica didn’t see it.
I also arranged with one of my best friends Paul to convoy with me that night up to Palm Beach to drop my car off, then he will drop me home. Thanks Paul!! I know it was not the shortest drive in the world! I knew Erica was having dinner out with a friend on the friday night so that proved very convenient, and I also told her that I would be having dinner with Paul. So this way, she didn’t know anything about the transport arrangements, she still thinks my work car is parked downstairs as per normal, and no one is the wiser. Perfect.
Everything is now in place, and all we have to do is wait for the day to arrive.
And arrive it does… after lunch Erica kept asking me where we were going, I told her that we are going to our accomodation now. She asks where and I tell her Rose Bay (which is where the Seaplane docks were). She naturally assumed that our hotel was there, to which I didn’t disagree. So when the taxi pulled up on the waterfront, with no hotel in sight, she was naturally a bit confused
As we walked along the marina, she asked me if were were taking a ferry or boat. To which once again I didn’t disagree and thus she thought that was it. Until we finally stopped outside the Seaplane docks… then I fessed up to the whole thing.
I love planes, large and small. And it was fascinating to watch these little planes take off and land on the water. After boarding, the plane seemed somewhat old fashioned on the inside. I straight away noticed the lack of high tech instruments which you’ll find on any modern aircraft. Because it was a prop, it was loud. But none the less it was so exciting!!!
We taxied along the water and finally took off. Now if there is one thing we noticed the most the most about this plane, it was that it was slooowwwww! It almost seemed to just hover in mid air, and lack any sort of forward momentum. It was a surreal experience because normally when your’re on a plane, everything seems to pass by quite quickly.
But here we were, suspended over the water with a breathtaking view of the harbour bridge, the city, the water and surrounding inlets and cliff heads. It was awesome!!! It was a 20min flight in total, and I thoroughly enjoyed soaking in every second of it. We eventually hugged the coast and set a course for Palm Beach. It was truly beautiful.
We then came in for landing at our destination which again was such a surreal experience. Landing a plane on water!! How cool is that!!! We thanked the pilot, and exited the plane where we were picked up by the guesthouse to head to our accomodation.
Another surprise down, one more to go. By this stage in the day we were both quite exhausted and just looked forward to having a nice, comfortable, and relaxing time in our room. The day has been full throttle from 6am when we left the house. A plush bed and a room with a million dollar view sounds like the perfect way to wind down
Well we’re almost there, just one more part to go. And thats it. Finally!!! Slowly but surely we’re getting there!!