Miz Lizzie Adventures: Mackay to Townsville

Today was the first full day of holiday.

We arrived fairly early and got set up quickly. It’s a beautiful caravan park, and as it’s low season, we have the place almost to ourselves.

I was tired after yesterday’s packing and travelling, and after a delicious supper of grilled pork chops and pineapple (grown about a kilometre away), a brief walk on the beach 20 metres away and a catch up on what was happening in blogland, we both put head to pillow and were out like a light. I woke early to the most wonderful sunrise over the sea, and a very peaceful sound from the waves at high tide.

I’d booked my sewing machine in for a service in Townsville as I don’t much care for the local technician in Mackay. Need I say there was a very modest fabric purchase….? We also paid a visit to the Honda motorbike shop across the road (how’s that for convenience?) to see if we could find a handlebar mount for the satnav, but no luck, or it would have been even scores for me and the Husband. Then off to our first planned visit, the Heritage Tea Rooms, up the high and winding Herveys Range Road, just north of the city.

It’s gorgeous. A settler-style cottage, built of wood, with high ceilings, verandahs and a tin roof, it’s still filled with original furniture, zinc tubs, old mangles, dressers (hutches) filled with lovely old crockery, original floorboards and fascinating photos of people and scenes from 100 years ago and more. And the food… well. I had two huge batch scones (buttermilk biscuits), fresh butter and home made plum jam. The Husband went blokey and had a beef pie and a sausage roll (and the half scone I couldn’t manage!), washed down with an excellent iced latte. Delicious, home made, and enjoyed in the shady garden surrounds of the Tea Rooms.

Then back down Herveys Range, stopping for a photo of the stunning view from the top, with Mt Cataract in the middle and Townsville and the sea in the distance, and back to Rollingstone and the purchase of some beautiful locally-caught banana prawns and another very local pineapple for our dinner.

Not a cloud in the sky all day, 34°C/93°F, and as soon as I’ve written this, I’m heading for the swimming pool for an afternoon dip. It’s hell, but someone has to do it. Tomorrow we’re packing up in the morning and heading north once again, to Cairns and Far North Queensland. Plenty more to do there, but it struck us today that now we have Bill, we’d be able to head up to the Daintree and Cape Tribulation, something we couldn’t do in our previous car due to the roughness of the road. Something to think about… it’s nearly 18 years since I last visited the Cape.

See you in FNQ 🙂

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Homeward bound…

It’s been all too short, but it’s time to turn for home

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My beloved mountain

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Silver gull, eyeing our lunch

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My favourite beach

There have been some splendid highlights: seeing friends and family to re-forge and strengthen the bonds of love and friendship; making new friends; exchanging gifts; refreshing our spirits with the abundance of natural beauty around us in this small patch of heaven; wonderful food and drink; and last but not least, the company of the darling Husband to enjoy it all with.

We’ve covered thousands of kilometres, and still have about 1500 to go, but long distance travel is the price we pay to live in this beautiful country and still remain connected to the ones we love.

I leave you with some photos…

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Loot! Macadamias and macadamia oil

Tomorrow I hope to post the August F2F round-up, travel and energy permitting, but for now, it’s time to head north and turn our faces towards home. 🙂

Words under Pressure #19

Two posts in one day? Well, sometimes you just have too much to say. And Words under Pressure need to be let out…

There’s nothing like taking up a new(ish) and dangerous sport when you’re old enough to know better…

I do get a few stares of disbelief when I talk about careering around the country on the back of a large and powerful motorbike. At 54 I suppose it’s not really surprising, but I’ve had a love affair with motorbikes for much of my life and now I have the Husband to share it with. We have no children or other dependents, we’re reasonably careful and law-abiding, and we do want to have some serious fun before we’re too old and decrepit. And boy, do we have fun….

Adventure

I voyage for delight,
Venturing into the unknown
For the joy of discovery,
And soul’s refreshment.

Into the strange
I plunge, delirious, laughing.
Thoughts riotous,
My heart expanding.

I have broken out
Of my scribed circle,
The slow, sick spiral
Down into dullness.

See me fly!
I have seized the slipstream
And travel on the high winds
That circle the earth.

Envy me, earthbound.
I have launched myself at
The far places of the world.
I stride on clouds.

Are we having fun yet? Are we ever!

Words under Pressure #12

Quicksilver

He walks in thunder, the sea god,
Wave piercer, wave dancer, in rainbow clouds.
Before him, the wrinkled, endless sea,
Behind him, the waterspout.

Look  how the scented tropic air
Is wrenched and chilled by his power.
Zephyrs shriek and howl
At their lord’s passing.

See how in his white wake
The night stars writhe and dance,
Made mirage by the heat
Of his oblivious passage.

But the fish do not fear him,
Though they part and dive before him.
Wave Dancer walks gently
On the roof of their world.

Words under pressure #1

No, it’s not good poetry, but it released something that wanted out.  And this is MY blog, so I can post it if I want to, heh heh!

The colours don't look quite real, but actually they're even stronger and brighter than this.

The colours don’t look quite real, but actually they’re
even stronger and brighter than this.

Island in the Sun

Hurtling across the earth’s face,
The shrieking plane violates
Heaven’s lofty peace, its pure moonscape.
This parody of flight, this facile travel.

And then the reprieve, the release
From their stinking shell. A birth into the sun.
Dazed and feeble, travellers emerge,
Inhale – and stumble blinking, confused.

Something magical, something far-off and strange.
A sense of other, a profound difference.
A sweeping rush of exhilaration.
A changed way of being.

The tremor is stilled, heartbeat slows.
In the sunlight, hummingbirds tremble and glitter.
Time to stop and watch. The race recedes.
The mind’s eye is dazzled, ultraviolet-lit.

White echoing cliffs, where the sea hurls
Lace-like foam onto the bony shoulders
Of ancient, fossil-crusted limestone.
High in the aching blue void, birds scream.

Sands: white, golden and shaded pink,
Soft and fine, like island sugar, whisper and blow.
The wind is strange, far-travelled,
Breathing its lonely, ten-thousand-mile breath.

Along the shore, the restless, unending
Refreshment continues, the world’s
Inexorable heartbeat, the surf, the tides.
Unceasing, eternal, ancient, ever-new.

Along the roads, the great grass, the cane
With its heart of sweetness, its heady promise
Waves above brilliant hedgerow jewels –
The wild orchids. Everyday miracles.