Our 'one year' opportunity to fulfil a dream of living by the sea has given rise to "we can't possibly leave yet, let's stay a little longer". It doesn't make much sense to live in one state and work in another but then again we often end up doing things a little differently.
I am feeling quite proud of myself today, overcoming a bit of a phobia. I don’t like having my photo taken and tend to avoid being in front of a camera if I can (I love to be behind one though). I have been procrastinating fixing up the ‘about’ page for this blog; writing a blurb, no problem, adding a photo, big problem. I couldn’t in all honesty put up a photo that was a decade old and I was very tempted to not have one at all. There is no rule to say you have to! But, it is nice to put a face to a name and it would be useful to have a recent photo or two on hand.
So I decided to do it myself. Nothing fancy, no major set up or equipment, something natural, just a tripod, check, and a remote control, check, (first time I have taken it out of the box). It took me a good part of the afternoon and a lot of fiddling around. You can’t be in two places at once, behind and in front of the camera, checking that the photo is focused and framed and being the subject as well. It was a bit tedious to take a photo, check it, adjust and do it again and again. There was a fair amount of luck involved I have to confess.
Good enough: I reckon I’m right now for the next few years, maybe even another decade, although there’s an awful lot of ageing going on at an alarming rate after 40. Next time I might even be brave and radical and wear make-up, although I will need one of my girls to do that. The last time I was ‘made-up’ was my wedding day and I didn’t have a hand in that. One step at a time though, there’s only so much uncomfortableness a person can take. And the best thing, it’s done and no one was telling me to smile…
It has been a while since we have had a noteworthy sunset, I don’t think there’s been anything spectacular this year. The closest thing was a month or so ago when a controlled burn sent plumes of smoke billowing into the air. A hazy, yellow brown streaked the sky and settled right across the path of the descending sun.
I have missed the beauty, magic and drama of a coloured sky late in the day. Last year there were some truly amazing displays. The last few months the clear sky glows a faint orange as the yellow orb dips below the horizon. At the moment there isn’t even any sun. The grey skies of the last few days have poured rain today, the view from our balcony obscured by misty clouds.
Despite a yearning for the glory of sunsets past, I never tire of our sea view. Shades of blue, green or grey, the sea and sky weave their magic and cast their spell.
Late afternoon usually finds Johanna and I somewhere along the esplanade, sitting on our favourite seat watching the world go by and the sun go down or feeling the sand between our toes as we walk along the beach. There is something soothing about our daily ritual; a chance to feel the final rays of the sun, the whisper of a breeze or the shout of the wind. The light has a beautiful golden hue and the shadows are long. Families have one last swim or one last play and the sun worshippers pick up their towels and call it a day as the last rays fade away. People walk and jog and ride accompanied by friends, lovers, dogs, kids and bikes. No one seems in a hurry, these are the final moments of another day.
And Johanna and I walk and chat about the day or sit in companionable silence. Earlier this week as we sat on ‘our seat’ she laid her head on my shoulder and said, “I love living here, I can’t imagine living in a city again” And I love these moments with my daughter, I know too well they will not last. Now is a precious moment in time and the strengthening of bonds that will sustain a lifetime of love. Number four will soon make her own way in the world. Memories of Caloundra will always, for me, be associated with the golden light of late afternoons and the golden warmth of sharing it with my daughter.
The familiar boardwalk to Kings Beach was lined with people and cameras this morning. Sunny blue skies and warm weather accompanied by an excitement and uncontained buzz, “effing unbelievable” was the conclusion. The massive surf closed the beach to swimmers but the board riders were in their element. Kings beach became the playground for the competent and the wannabees. But the real action was right of The Groin and a fair way out. Here the thrill seekers and risk takers and those who really know how to ride a board pitted themselves against some of the biggest waves we have seen on this part of the coast. And right out the back jet ski’s were towing the bravest and perhaps the more foolhardy onto the mountainous crashing waves.
There was plenty of commentary from the bench, lots of oohs and aahs as surfers were smashed, chewed up like match sticks and spat out into the turbulent swirling white water. There were cheers when they managed to stay upright, descending the 15 foot drop down the face of the waves or exiting the barrels unscathed. There was appreciation for courage and skill and free entertainment.
No one was in a hurry to leave, where else would you rather be…
It was not a long weekend in Queensland, but as Colin is working in Melbourne there was not much point in being there on Monday so he had three days at home, which is a first for a while. We took the opportunity to spend an afternoon on Bribie Island, we were curious to see what lay many kilometres to the south of the tiny tip of Bribie Island that we see from our balcony. The Northern half of the Island is National Park and a long sliver at the very end constitutes our view. To actually get onto the island we had to drive 50 odd kilometres South and over the bridge that connects the island to the mainland.
Bribie Island seems an odd mix, working class meets retirees, the seventies along side man made waterways sporting brand spanking new colossal homes, the local greasy fish and chip shop not far from the swanky tapas bar.
Woorim was being pestered by the Easterlies, its unprotected beaches and coast bearing the brunt of the relentless winds at this time of the year. Bongaree on the opposite side was calm by comparison and the preferred place for picnics and a leisurely Sunday by the water, boats and fishing rods in abundance. The local jetty was the place to hang out if you are in your teens and like jetty’s the world over, the teens were jumping off into the sea right beside the sign which says no jumping!
Colin and I plonked ourselves down in the swanky tapas bar, of course, and whiled away a very pleasant afternoon.
50 meters from our front door the sea ebbs and flows in Pumicestone Passage. It is a sliver of waterway between the coast and the very northern tip of Bribie Island. There are no waves in the passage, but a current that follows the tidal surge, a daily rhythm that sees water flow one way and then another, in and out. The mouth of the passage is within sight and there the waves are free to come and go.
On a Sunday The Passage and its shores fill with people and watercraft; swimmers, sun bathers, boats, jet skis, canoes and kite surfers. A vibrant energy tempered by a relaxed Sunday vibe. Locals ‘park’ their boats and jet skis along the shore and head into town, drinking coffee at cafes and wandering the Sunday Market. Along the banks people swim and play, eat and drink, taking their fill of sun and warmth.
Yesterday we joined them. After our usual morning walk around to Kings Beach and Colin’s obligatory swim and then morning tea at The Edge, our favourite café and also where Johanna works on a Sunday, we continued the leisurely lazy morning, Colin swimming and kayaking in The Passage and finally lunch under the shade of the umbrella bedecked picnic tables. The natural beauty of the place is soothing for the soul and so is the opportunity to just ‘be’, an unhurried, slow unfurling of the day…