Friday, 3 April 2015

TOD Tour, Day 51 - Bribie Island

Rainy morning office
It may get to the point when we start complaining about the sun. It has, after all, been only a partial companion during our first two months on the road.

It poured for most of today, taking pauses only to restock from the ocean as it blew in from Moreton Bay and dumped on us in the way that coastal rain does. It wasn't until lunch time that enough of those pauses started to hold hands and make it worthwhile venturing out into tentative overcast light.

Gluten-free fish and chips for lunch, cooked knowingly in a separate vat with special crumbs but the deep frying still argues with my gut and the hours that followed were unpleasant. I've had a word to the caterers and subsequently, I'll be going back to tuna sandwiches.

Bribie must be a lovely place when the sun shines. The ring of soft sandy beaches are well supported by a system of well maintained parks and recreational areas and the inevitable coffee shops. The few strategically placed pubs seem friendly places. At Woorim and Bongaree, the public visitor facilities are excellent and hot summers here must be wonderful for families. We watched bream donating themselves at the wharf at Bongaree, before another downpour had us fleeing back to the car. Along the esplanade at Sylvan Beach, the recommended cafes were closed and their customers thinking better of it than to drown for the sake of a good coffee.

We left the mainland and headed back to the island of Australia - a Bribie jibe - and visited a couple we had met back at Yuraygir NP on Day 30. Our pleasant afternoon tea became an altogether amazing experience when he took us upstairs to what his wife called "his museum". An entire upstairs gallery, filling a room despite his insistence that he had to put a lot into storage, was complete with lit glass cases and displayed his collection of antiquities and artefacts of ancient civilizations. Stone spear tips and axe heads, a bronze age battle axe head, sharpening and grinding stones and exquisite primitive pottery didn't just stay on the shelves. They were handed to us to savour the feel and admire the craft of creating such tools of every day survival. Sue held a small clay cup from the everyday of a Persian Empire peasant kitchen, made just a few hundred years after Jesus reconfigured the calendar. There were statues from New Guinea, spears from the western desserts of Australia and clasps which held Roman capes around the shoulders of their soldiers.

Our guests will remain nameless here, not out of a lack of gratitude for the generous act of sharing their treasures but from a need to protect their collection.

All this access from a conversation at sunset one afternoon in a bush campsite.

Beware the seemingly mundane. It has a way of shocking you but sometimes in the most delightful ways.

Woorim Beach

Still shaking our heads in disbelief, we took up a dinner invitation from Murray and Barb Dennis to meet with their friends at the local golf club. It was a pity Christ's death had moved the regular trivia night to a Thursday, as it made conversation difficult amid the din. Our ability to talk underwater equalised the effect and we were soon involved in some fascinating conversations. For good measure, I knew nine of the ten answers as they played out in the background.

More rain as we read ourselves to Nod.

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