Cape Byron and the Jewel of the Tweed or the Case of the Unrestful Restroom

Byron-bay-lighthouse-clouds

When anxious, uneasy and bad thoughts come, I go to the sea, and the sea drowns them out with its great wide sounds, cleanses me with its noise, and imposes a rhythm upon everything in me that is bewildered and confused. – Rainer Maria Rilke

For me the most challenging places to write about are usually those that are particularly special to me. I fear I will not do them justice. It’s time I stopped procrastinating though and shared my album of Cape Byron in New South Wales, 165 km south of Brisbane.  Some of my childhood was lived in small coastal towns and I spent  many hours of precious solitude and freedom on their shores. I visited Byron Bay for the first time in October, 2013  and it brought back a flood of wonderful memories for me. I could have lingered all day at the lighthouse, taking in the intense blue panoramas. If it is possible to fall in love with a place, I did that day. Continue reading

Local Treasures – Wildlife Escapes in an Urban Environment

Water dragon

The most effective way to save the threatened and decimated natural world is to cause people to fall in love with it again, with its beauty and its reality. – Peter Scott

I remember what parks looked like when I was a child. Most were uninspiring patches of grass and prickles with one or two trees, a token swing set, a splintered wooden see-saw and a scarily tall slippery slide. I recall frying my rear end and upper legs on baking hot summer days as I zoomed down enormous shimmering  metal slides, often ending up   bruised and concussed  on a rock hard bed of concrete. While they seemed exhilarating at the time and we certainly learned to be physically tough, I do think the elaborate green spaces I see in cities today with their mini-forests, gardens, ponds and lakes are a vast improvement. They provide sanctuaries for wildlife  and much needed nature therapy for stressed residents. Continue reading