East is East, and West is East, too…

“Discovery of ocean’s stately dance puts scientists in a spin”

Australian researchers have discovered that vast, pancake-shaped bodies of cool water, about 40 kilometres in diameter, are spinning out of Bass Strait into the Tasman Sea, and then turning east to head for the Indian Ocean.The phenomenon happens at a stately pace, with perhaps one giant disc of water each year making it as far as the southern coast of Western Australia, after a journey of several years.

From the online Sydney Morning Herald, 2012-02-22

I might be a little cartographically-challenged, but isn’t the southern coast of Western Australia in the… west? The adjective “Western” seems to be trying to tell us that. So why did the watery pancakes turn “east to head for the Indian Ocean”? Maybe the fact that they had to circumnavigate the globe, across the Pacific, through the windy Straits of Magellan, under the southern tip of South America, across the southern Atlantic with its freezing gales, grumpy seals and flocks of chattering penguins, around Cape Horn… to get to the Indian Ocean, maybe that would explain why it took so long. I’m surprised they made it.