Thursday, October 31

I wish ..................

Sorry dear readers, but I am having challenges.  I travelled to Adelaide just over a week ago, and with consideration of the weight of my luggage I took my little (notebook) computer, which is so slow that I am ready to pitch it (even out my hotel window!).  How I wish that I had brought my good laptop, and my Canon camera as I would have found it easier to communicate and with the camera I could have captured more interesting images.  Both are heavy - hence my decision to leave them home, but I do have regrets about my decision.  I wish they were both light as a feather and could easily have fitted into my luggage without breaking my back!!!

I went to Adelaide for my mother's 98th birthday.  Sadly she is in a nursing home and her dementia keeps her in another world.  At this point she does recognise me, but here stories are strange and confusing.  She asked me the other day about my father - whom she claims arose early each day and went swimming.  Now, I have never seen my father in bathing togs and certainly never saw him swim that I recall and the story about him getting up early to go swimming is nonsense.  When I told her I did not remember this (endeavouring to converse without upsetting her by telling her it was not true) she told me that I must be getting old as my memory was fading.  One has to laugh!!

Still we had a little party to celebrate.

(I have taken photos which fail to upload here.... Grrrrr.  My little computer?  Slow internet?)

I stayed in North Glenelg with my friend Bev from WA.  We chose to stay on the beachfront and a rather old but not too unpleasant holiday rental.  It was adequate but I would not rush to stay there again.  No major complaints, but I am sure we could do better.

We had a wonderful time exploring Glenelg, the city of Adelaide (including the Casino- and no we didn't win anything, but I guess of you only spend $5   you can't win much.) and Semaphore.  It is many years since I had been to Semaphore and I remember it more for the festival on the beachfront when I was a child and the evening Dad bought fish and chips and we opened the newspaper package as we sat on the beach and a seagull flew overhead and droppped a huge poo right in the middle of our dinner!!!!  Dad was not amused!!!

This time it was to explore - as many of Bev's relatives had lived there many years ago.

Such a quiet historical beachside area with so many historical buildings - well worth a visit or two.

I have photos - but can't upload them.


Thursday, October 17


I have always been fascinated by mangroves.  I have enjoyed walking midst them - especially on boardwalks that have been built through them e.g. Wynnum North (Queensland).  There is often an eerie silence only broken by the clicking of something in the midst of the mangroves.  At low tide they are often smelly but you can often see tiny crabs, small fish, birds and insects (especially mosquitoes and midgies!) within the area.

When I moved to Beachmere, I discovered a wonderful collection of mangroves - they are "everywhere". Along the banks of the Caboolture River and in the many swamps in the area, plus my favourite spots along the foreshore.

Something I have seen here are the trees that appear to have grown some distance from the shores and when the tide is in, they look as if they have been planted in the ocean.  I suspect it is more that the tides and storms have swept the seeds further out and/or that there has been erosion that has destroyed those mangroves closer to shore leaving some to grow almost alone in the sea.

These are some of the photos I took in an area just to the north of the little township of Beachmere, Queensland.

There is a great website which has some very interesting facts about Mangroves.  Click here.

The following information is from that site.

"Australia has the third largest area of mangroves in the world after Indonesia and Brazil, totalling around 11,500 km2 representing approximately 6.4% of the world’s total mangrove area. The larger forested areas of Australia’s mangroves, approximately 75%, occur in the humid tropics to the north where human population densities are low. However, there are notable areas of mangroves in temperate regions as far south as Corner Inlet in Victoria around 38° S. This is the most southerly and highest latitude site of mangroves in the world. These southern stands consist entirely of one species, Avicennia marina, a member of the plant family Avicenniaceae."

My grandchildren exploring the mangroves.

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Sunday, October 13

Family and Fun

A strange couple of days - my original plans thrown into disarray by the men of the family!  G (son) living in Finland but due home early in November wanted a family member to check a property on the Gold Coast, but his father was admitted to hospital.  Though we are no longer together I am concerned for him, so went to Brisbane on Friday afternoon and after picking up Z (from school) we went to the hospital where the medical team were just about to perform a procedure on the patient.  He has ascites - the cause yet to be determined and had some 5 litres of fluid drained from his abdomen - much of it while we were there causing much mirth as the draining bag filled with extra ordinary speed and threatened to burst!!!!

Hospital visit over we went to "summer hockey" where Z played an magnificent game.

Early next morning I set off to the Gold Coast for my very early appointment to check out the property - and oddly enough it was raining for most of the trip south.  Not heavy - but wipers were needed on and off.  As I left the Coast it stopped and never rained again that day!  Oh, how we need it.

The property passed my inspection - and I took some photos of it - especially the rain drops on the leaves at the entry.

Rain drops on the leaves
Beautiful lake nearby covered with water lilies

On the way north I needed some petrol, so turned off near Beenleigh to find a petrol station, and drove past the Beenleigh Historical Village.  As I am a volunteer at the Caboolture one I thought I would have a quick sticky beak to see how there's was.  I would love to have had a few hours to spend there, but it was back on the road.

I had been booked to attend a Writers Retreat for the Society of Women Writer's Queensland, and pondered about heading straight for the island and spending a little time with my fellow members.  In the end that is what I did.  There were two key reasons that I persuaded myself to bypass Beachmere and go - one was I had seen some bamboo growing just back from the Toc H Congeau House, and wanted to take some photos, and the other was that I was to pay for Susanna De Vries book "Australian Heroines of World War One".  So on to Bribie Island I went.

Luckily I was there in time for lunch, and later sat around with other members talking about writing.  Mid afternoon I set off for Woolworths - I need a few things for home and I had to get some cash to pay for the book.  It was then that I walked down the lane near Congeau House to photograph the Bamboo. 

Photos taken, shopping done and I paid for the book - and spent another hour or so with the group.  They decided to go to the Bribie RSL - and I decided to head back home to Beachmere.  I was exhausted.

As I drove along Welsby Parade, I couldn't help myself.  Just had to take a few photos of the sunset.


Thursday, October 3


It is pretty easy to see a kangaroo in Australia - for a start they are in our zoos and wildlife parks, and if you venture "out bush" and drive at night (NOT recommended) you are bound to see them. 

In my drive around Australia a few months ago, I encountered mostly dead ones.  They are in the outback in the thousands, and have no road sense, so, sadly for the drivers and the kangaroos they often meet in rather awful circumstances on the roads.   Bodies of kangaroos litter many of the outback highways and roads.  Driving at night means that one's chance of hitting one is much higher than driving during the daylight hours, but even then you are likely to encounter a few on the side of the road, or taking a quick hop across the roadway in search of  "greener pastures".  When a car driving at 100 kms or more hits a kangaroo there is likely to be the death of the 'roo, the smashing of the car and rarely, but it does happen, the driver or a passenger is killed.  I chose NOT to drive at night - in fact it was one of the many rules I drew up for myself for my journey.  As a lone traveller there were many things I chose not to do to keep myself safe.  Luckily for me it worked!!

Though one day after a sunset cruise (near Fitzroy Crossing, WA), I had forgotten that I had to drive about 10 kms after sunset and had three close encounters - two kangaroos and a huge bull, which had my heart pounding overtime.  Luckily I made it back to the caravan pack without damage!!!!

Last week I had my grandchildren staying with me - and I took them to a few places that I thought they would enjoy.  Including the Caboolture Historical Village, Bribie Island, strawberry picking, the beaches around Beachmere, fishing in the lake, crabbing, and so on. 

As well I took them to Toorbul. which is just north of Beachmere, between two creeks - Ningi and Elimbah Creeks overlooking Pumicestone Passage.  It is quite a pretty little township, much bigger than the last time I was there, with a lot more homes along the esplanade and further.  I was looking for kangaroos.  The children played in the playground while I took a "breather", and when we set off again we went south along the esplanade and I found what I had been looking for.

It is often not easy to see wild kangaroos though quite a number of townships along the coast have 'roos wandering around and we were thrilled to find 19 of them grazing in the middle of the day right there at Toorbul. 

There is a large joey dangling from the pouch of this roo at Toorbul.

It is quite an amazing sight - the kangaroos kept grazing and ignored us.  J and M counted them, and shrieked as they 'found' another one.

So, to see kangaroo's in the wild can I recommend Toorbul which is some 55 or so kilometres north of Brisbane - just north of the Caboolture turn off, you will see the turn off to Toorbul.

On the return journey from Toorbul, we called in at a strawberry farm, just off the Bribie Island Road and picked a huge tub of strawberries which we subsequently ate and I had enough left to make four jars of jam.

After we had dropped off the strawberries at home, we set off for Bribie Island where the children had a swim in the calm waters of the passage near Bongaree.