I was lucky to spend 2 weeks at Golden Beach on the Sunshine Coast. My apartment was right on the water and I got to witness the most amazingly beautiful sunrises
From my window through a view framed by Norfolk pines ,I looked directly across the water to Bribie Island .Each morning when there was no grey cloud across a calm bay where the dark blue water that stretched between Golden Beach and Bribie rippled like wrinkled silk, the sky over Bribie was this bright transluscent orange heralding the arrival of the dawn then as the sun rose further up over Bribie the whole bay was just flooded with beautiful golden light making it easy to see how Golden Beach got its name .
As the sunlight flooded my bedroom I lay there suffused in sparkling golden light feeling drifting in and out of sleep listening to the laughter of the kids below and feeling all wrapped up in heavens embrace …
Out to sea you might see a colony of Pelicans perched on a sand bar or these magnificant birds gliding silently like sea planes coming in to land with such style and grace
From early in the morning one or two kayakers would be out or the odd fisherman standing knee deep with his line cast into the water waiting patiently the odd jogger would pound by then as the sun rose people would be out and about in larger groups laughing and talking having picnics by the water and as it was towards the end of the school hols lots of kids laughing giggling zooming by on their bikes and scooters families making their Easter holiday memories as the school holidays drew to a close
I was on the top floor directly over looking the footpath right next to the water and could enjoy the merriment and the happy vibes floating up without having to be down in amongst it .. That suited me very well. I sat in my dressing gown convalescing from a tummy bug eating soup and painting and watched some great movies .
Listening to the kids took me back to memories of summer holidays with my family in a little caravan somewhere in Weymouth UK and Sunday jaunts to Weston Super Mare where we walked on the pier and were allowed to buy giant sticks of striped pink candy rock which played havoc with your teeth and when it rained which more often than not it did you’d see all these sad dejected looking donkeys lined up on the beach saddled ready to go with no customers and our parents felt so sorry for the donkeys they handed over sixpenses to the grateful donkey owner and insisted we kids go for a ride .
I got lost at Weston Super Mare once as a kid on a crowded beach when the tides went out they could be out for what seemed like miles .As a litttle girl one day the tide was right out I could see the sea glistening silver out on the horizon a long way away so I set my sights on walking out to the sea . I decided I would walk out to meet it. I would have been about 7 or 8 ,I walked and I walked and I walked and the sludgy wet sand I was walking through got deeper and deeper .I kept going and going with grim determination to reach the ocean but despite walking for ages seemed to be getting no closer to the water and when the sandy muddy sludge I was walking through was up to my thighs I realized I would have to turn back without reaching my goal .As I turned to walk back I could see my father coming after me with a non too pleased expression on his face .
Similarly in later years in Tasmania I set out on a bush walk at Mt Roland not far from Cradle Mt . The brochure had said after a reasonable length of hiking one should reach pastoral stretches of grassland where one could enjoy splendid vistas above the treeline I walked and walked and two hours later was still trudging up through dense shrubbery with no pastoral grasslands or alpine views in sight but I pushed on with dogged determination to reach the top . Four hours later I stumbled out into the open pastoral stretches the brochure had spoken of and it was quite magnificant the rocks were pink and grey bauxite and crystalite that gleamed in the setting sun there were wild flowers and the views ocean to one side and the mountains ridge after undulating ridge rippling away into the distance in the other It was totally magical out of this world beautiful .However by that time the light was fading I was exhausted and lost my bearings and couldn’t find the track head to get back down so had to be rescued by the SES .
I had my mobile and although the reception kept going in and out I managed to get a call or text through to the cabin park where I was staying I had no idea for a while if anyone was coming to get me .It was beautiful up there and I felt if I had a tent I could have stayed up there overnight and made my way back next morning but it was so cold and eventually cloud and fog set in and there might have been Tassie Devils running wild up there too .Eventually I noticed a couple of torch lights coming up through the scrub getting ever brighter as my rescuers grew closer and closer .They took several hours as they had to climb the track as I had .Eventually 3 guys arrived There were a couple of SES guys and a local policeman .They were able to radio the cabin park and apparently everyone at the cabin park restaurant cheered when I was found . The policeman was none too pleased to be called out as he had had a late night breaking up brawls at Devonport Cup racing celebrations the night before
When we got back down it was after 1 am and when I got back to my cabin the kindly proprietress left me a plate of cookies with a welcome back note and an invite to go down to the kitchen for a feed which I took her up on.After which I returned to the cabin and fell into a deep exhausted sleep
The next morning I woke at ten and can hardly believe it myself as I tell this story I was so mesmerized and engaged and captivated by that gorgeous otherworldy landscape at the top of the mt ranges and just wanted with every fibre of my being to be back up there . The desire to get back up there was so intense it superceded any tiredness or sore and aching limbs I may have had from the previous days exertions It was something of a Picnic at Hanging Rock moment for me and when I studied the map I realized there was another track head a few ks down the road at Mt Van Dyke which was much shorter .I slipped away quietly eschewing any desire to bask in my new found noteriety and even hitched a ride to the Mt Van Dyke trackhead which is not something I liked to do and within a couple of hours was back at the top of the mountain The Mt Van Dyke track being a whole lot easier and the route to the top much more accessible
Mt Van Dyke
I marvel at the photos taken the next day on top of Van Dyke a slightly tired looking woman in a pink windcheater with sun burnt cheeks looking dreamily out across exquisitely beautiful landscape with no hint of the misadventures of the evening before .