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I leave Australia tomorrow so I indulged myself a bit today, taking advantage of some of the wonders outside a conference room.

In the morning, a boat dropped me off on Langford Cay, a spit of brilliant white coral sand accessible only to boats. The attraction of Langford, aside from the potential for sunbathing (distinctly frowned upon in skin cancer-aware Australia) is a reef known for its turtles. Sure enough, almost as soon as I slipped on my mask and snorkel and swam out a few metres, I was confronted with a glorious green turtle.

Turtles are endlessly fascinating, and I spent a good 20 minutes following my friend around the reef. I spotted two other turtles, one asleep on the sea bed, as well as the usual spectrum of astoundingly coloured reef fish.

The other wildlife encounter came during some tennis at sunset. Looking up at the sky during my serve I saw what I at first took to be vast flocks of birds. Look a little more closely: those aren’t birds, but fruit bats. In Europe, the bats I’ve seen are tiny creatures, flitting nervously around. These were big, swooping confidently in the sky above the bright lights of the tennis court. In England, there are bat protection societies, but I don’t think anyone could think fruit bats are endearing.

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