Saturday, February 28, 2015

"...alone in the blogosphere on the first day of March, and/or scratching the belly of a Platypus..."

 *The above photo is from the link below

Where has the time gone since I arrived back to Australia?
It hasn't gone to writing blog posts, or even letters (well, actually I have sent a few) or catching up on reading (well, a couple of lighter reads) or cleaning the house (well, I did get a new window steamer that is pretty cool)- 
There can be something about Tasmania- that makes the idea of trying to keep in touch, through means of technology- a bit vague.

I think the time difference is a large part of the vagueness, I don't often come across other people online at the same time I am, if they are well, I can just call or text, because we are in the same country and people here still call, or come over.

Also, my life is different here, in a way I find hard to explain.  Whereas life in Stockholm is much easier to explain.

After going to Maria Island, I went to Melbourne, and actually I have just been busy ever since.  Neighbors, ripe nectarines on the tree, a house guest, yoga, weight training, and general friendliness have kept me busy.

But I was just looking at a blog that is no longer active and I clicked 'next blog' and the only blogs that came up were biblical scripture which spurned me to write an entry.

First let me tell you about the Platypus. I can only try to describe my up close encounter with the platypus.  I spent one year visiting what I considered my ‘local’ platypus at a nearby pond.  If the platypus was not on the pond then I would return each day until I had seen her/him.  Of course this was through my binoculars, and I was only viewing the platypus when her/him was on the surface of the pond.  I had (as I live in Australia) seen them in sanctuaries.  You walk into a dark cavern style room, not unlike a reptile house, and part of their environment is sheathed in glass so that the viewer can see the platypus while underwater. They do give the impression of being playful.
However, when my friend Saff and I waded into a small pool used for the platypus show, I still did not imagine that the platypus would make me feel as if she truly wanted to be my friend. (Yes, yes I anthropomorphise…) The small creature would swim up, wiggling her way up my forearm, sort of snuggling and flipping onto her back so I would scratch her furry belly.  She would at some point swim back a bit so she could use her soft bill to get under the belt of the wading suit I was wearing.  Only our friendship allowed Saff and I to share this experience because surely anyone would want ALL of the platypus attention focused solely on them. If you don't believe me (and really why should you?) Here is a link-
We did not get photos as someone would have had to been on the outside and how saddening would that have been? Very.
But as I think now only photographic evidence counts here are some other things that have been going on-

Melbourne had 'White Nights' happening a bit of an arts festival slash street party that happened from seven p.m. until seven a.m., as Australia isn't much for 24 hour culture I thought this was pretty good- there were building lit up with projections, this was from the telling of 'Through the Looking Glass'.
It was pretty cool but you know 'after cuddling a platypus' everything else pales a bit.
I went to the Soundwaves but even without the platypus experience, I still would not have had anything good to say about this.

Our neighbors across the road invited me to go blackberry picking, and since I was already in jam and preserving mode, I said yes.  We made jam and everyone was happy.  


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

" charge of all things beautiful..."

I just had my third trip camping (in a tent) and my second volunteer trip to Maria Island.
The group of people have so much history and knowledge I feel lucky to get to talk to them all.
I heard stories about living under Apartheid in Africa in the 1970s, learned one member can speak Afrikan, heard stories about growing up in Fiji, learned a lot about native plants, especially Tasmanian wildflowers.  I got tips on hiking/camping and going on the 'Overland Track'.

I looked out one evening as we were walking back to camp and I could see dolphins leaping out of the water, while I was standing amongst many wombats and there were kangaroos visible on the next hill.
I also saw the re-located (insurance population) devils, well I saw two and these days that is pretty amazing.
I swam in the ocean and I didn't miss having a hot shower (well, maybe a little).

I took down a tent all by myself.
I survived high winds and lots of rain.
Weeding was Minuet, Scottish and Californian thistle.

Tomorrow I am off to Melbourne for what will be a completely different trip, full of people, cars, airplanes, and rock bands.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

"...let's go for a walk, yeah, let's go for a drive..."

 After a couple of aborted attempts due to weather, I found a visitor willing to brave the rain, cold, and gusty winds at the top of Hartz Mountain (home to the tasty bottled water).
It is shocking to be in 5c in the middle of summer, but I think the walk is worth the effort.


 The above photo is what the "trail" looks like at the top.