2009 – on consideration

STORMS 083 STORMS 134 STORMS 108 heat 002


Coldstream Street living involves a lot of lawn clippings. I like LAWNS. I like them neat and clipped and tidy but I have ZERO interest in attending to them myself. Luckily , Izzy is an obsessional as well and he likes the Lawn. Neat. Edged, Then he places all the clippings in the Compost Heap. Some of that tourine developed when we lived at Bilambil Cottage where our Gentleman Owner hand mowed acres of Lawn and attended to it in a similar manner.


Just up  the road from Ulmarra is a motel which I have fancied for years and years. It stands on a hill above the canefields and looks like a Southern USA mansion from Gone with the Wind. For years, I have wanted to stop in there and find out the story behind it but I have never had the least good reason to pull in for the night. On one occasion I did. I was driving my daughter back to Urunga when I became very ill and we tried to pull over and book into the Motel but could find noone to receive us so we continued South. The Motel is in the very tiny village of Tyndale and like so many tiny Australian Villages, Tyndale seemed to be spluttering into extinction. The Monotliths had pulled the petrol pumps out and drawn the grocery shoppers into the bigger settlements.

Just the other day, we ventured out to Nymboida where the St John’s Coffee Stop has just opened up. We have been told the Nymboida Hotel is beginning to truly function again and now the ROADHOUSE at TYNDALE, home of The Motel, has re-opened with food, fuel and groceries. Go for it , Small Villages ! I don’t know who or what is breathing the flicker of life back into these small communities but its a fine thing to see.  MORE !!!!!! Says I.


As for me, I am back in my Pacific Highway Life.  They call it Highway No 1. Urunga is on the Pacific Highway. So is Ulmarra. It threads its was like the Rainbow Serpent through our lives. For most of its hundreds of kilometres its a 2 lane track. In Ulmarra, there is a 50km speed limit which brings it to a sudden and often resented tortoise’s crawl. Offended – is what No 1 looks like to me as it is compelled to funereally crawl through a Village.

One of the most common sales in the Villages of the North Coast is THE CHURCH.  I don’t know what the import of that is – but they surely do sell off a lot of churches. This one is for sale. It needs to be re-stumped before it can be lived in. I don’t think it has ever flooded – but the Council is big on re-stumping – IN CASE.

I do not wish to live in a Church. Nor do I wish to open a business in a Church.  Lingering Methodist Childhood trembles come over me at the very thought of it.  Mind you the Church at Kinchela which might well have been the family’s place of worship is now being lived in – by someone more daring than I am.


October also meant DRAGON BOAT RACES on the Clarence. I hadn’t expected to be impressed by them but I was.  All day long they raced. There were impressive competitive racers from all over the place but I enjoyed the local people.

An insider at one of the Government Agencies told me a few funny  stories about what happened when a boat crew of sedentary office workers took their places in the Dragon Boat.

JACA 003crown - Copy

The CLOCKTOWER HOTEL in Grafton had a major renovation last year and COUNTRY ENERGY provided a new jacaranda crown in LED display for Jacaranda Week. Back behind the camera, the old Weilly’s Hotel has closed down and now operates as a coffee shop. On the 2nd floor is a large metal alien  whose purpose has been nowhere explained to me. The Street was closed off for Jaca Thursday. I LOVE streets closed off. Streets which are normally vehicular. It feel near as daring as living in a Church with a sense of righteousness about it . Globally friendly instead of upturned tables and whip lashes in the foyer of the Temple.

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Springtime and the first few days of Summer have been STORMY. Clouds roll around most days behaving threateningly. Just up a little from here is the showground which is also the Cricket Ground. They refuse to be threatened by anything at all, so it seems to me. Heat, Hail, Rolling Thunder and all other occurrences just do not daunt the  white clad ULMARRA CRICKETERS. Its impressive and feelings of security and comfort reside within my ample bosom when the Ulmarra Cricketrs are on the Field.

Week Nights, its the Tennis Players and I look for the Lights and Listen for the occasional umpire’s call. We had 2 months or so when the floods had trashed the courts where there were no games and I, in fact, didn’t know about the Tennis – just the sight of damaged courts. Now – they reassure me of life being as it ought. Thanks, Ulmarra Cricketers and Tennis Players.

054 December – clouds and blue skies and heat. Huntsmen spiders on the ceiling and wee frogs on the back step.
golden spread 001cushions

Grafton has been  the most interesting town for garage sales and auctions that I have been in since my scavenger licence and WHITE ROSE TRADING DAYS of the early 1970s.  For $50, I acquired 2 bucket like chairs with curved legs and arms and horsehair still stuffing the seat. Paired each of them up with one of my cushions from the $20 Gold Doonah Set and added a touch of class to the eclectic decor of the Coldstream. 


And each Sunday, at 11a.m, I drive the Charade down Coldstream to the WIDE RIVER CAFE . Izzy has. by then, been playing for an hour. I order a fruit juice, freshly squeezed and sit with the Sunday papers. I chat with Leanne  or Debbie. Yarn with the customers. Take photos. Wander the Village and do some shopping. Look through the bookshop and JACK A DANDY.

I like Sundays.

jenni 018 Night time and the lights in the house.
STORM SKIES 006 That’s the cricketers over there past the Hills Hoist, through the long grass and into the ULMARRA SHOWGROUND. When we looked at this house on Google Earth we came to some rather odd conclusions. We didn’t know they were odd then. There was the ULMARRA SPORTS CLUB marked on the map and I wasn’t sure about living so near to a Club.
Well – as it turns out – that’s the Ulmarra Sports Club you can  see. It doesn’t intrude at all.
wrnov15 019 2009 – on consideration – had music and new friends.
armi nov 09 018

New homes and old family. Travelling round the North Coast and the new England. It has had floods and collapsed roads and mountains and rivers and Facebook and Blogs and family history.

lhsepia 2009 – cafes and kindness and good conversations.
LYNNE 60 2 036 2009 – had dogs and kids and 60th birthdays and now there is a new baby coming.
There’s a lot to think about here. I could do with Charlie’s advice on this one.
lynne 60 ulmarra pub 006 - Copy  

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