It’s that early morning time before the world has stirred and I am sitting somewhere close to Heaven. Today the sea and sky are bringing on threat rather than promise; both are grey with white caps on the sea and the wind whistling and rustling through the trees. This home is expansive with stunning grounds overlooking the sea.
There are three free range chickens who conveniently lay just outside the back door. There are many tiny bunnies to be seen on the lawns each time we drive up and last night there was a potoroo foraging by the driveway, safe and comfortable in this idyllic location.
Yesterday I walked along the Burnie waterfront. It is beautiful and unlike my childhood memories of a seaside scarred by industry. Tasmania is very green. This is the first time in many years and many visits that I have seen it green like this. It is green like Shropshire, another of my world’s favourite places by virtue of the friends who call it home. It is interesting that green brings with it a feeling of wealth and richness.
Tasmania has struggled for a number of years because of its ‘green’ approach to life. I am certainly not saying that this is a bad thing; I cherish green; conservation and saving this world of ours for future generations. It is just that the opportunities that would bring wealth and employment opportunities to Tasmania are those that are diametrically opposed to the green ethos and there does not seem to be any midway point. But then again, you can’t half destroy something that is beautiful and still maintain the pristine beauty. As I was growing up, Lake Pedder was being flooded. There was discussion, protests, more discussion, more protests and in this instance those who valued green did not win. I think though, that is the last time that industry triumphed in Tasmania. I don’t make these statements as a value judgement. It is clear though that this is a big part of the reason why I can come home to the Tasmania of my childhood and enjoy a pace not experienced in the other states of Australia for many years.
There is a mummy rabbit and two baby bunnies playing hide and seek in the garden. They are hopping in and out of the vegetation, trusting and oblivious to any possible threat.
Yesterday I visited Ulverstone. I don’t remember Ulverstone well from my childhood but I found it charming. We visited a small coffee shop and I enjoyed the best crème brulee that I had tasted in a long time. I can generally resist cakes and sweets but crème brulee is just a little too tempting for me. Later in the afternoon we went to a rather lovely place set up to showcase the work of local Burnie artisans. There are artisans getting on with their craft as well as beautiful locally made wares for sale. The talent of Tasmanians never ceases to amaze me, attracted as the artistic are to a state that values beauty as Tasmania does.
A tiny timid blue wren just hopped onto the verandah. I love the way that they skittishly dart about. That site definitely brings back memories of childhood. I remember an abundance of wrens and robins. My mum used to encourage swallows to nest under our house. Yes they made a mess but the arrival of their chicks overwhelmed any inconvenience. I haven’t thought about those swallows for years; but one tiny blue wren brought the memories back.
Everything in Queensland is big. We live with large pythons in our backyard; giant cane toads are likely to found on most evenings and the birdlife is squawking cockatoos and parrots, leaving no voice for a timid wren. That is not to say that I don’t appreciate Queensland; I most certainly do. What I see in Tasmania is so very familiar. This is another whole train of thought and after my holidays, I will write a post on what I value about Queensland. There is lots! But for now, I am back to Launceston this afternoon and then down for a couple of nights at Dolphin Sands. I grew up holidaying for many years at Coles Bay and Dolphin Sands overlooks the hazards, truly to me, the most stunning mountains anywhere in the world. They have the capacity to lower my blood pressure just by seeing them.
Now I am aware that I have a couple of people who enjoy my blogging and I thank those of you who send me messages of encouragement. Without those messages I really have no idea whether I have any readers at all. The Tasmania saga is quite significantly different to my earlier posts and much more about getting on with life than where I have been. I am humbled by the fact that anyone actually enjoys my ramblings. I simply say thank you!