Tag Archives: gold coast


We did the wedding.We did it fairly unscathed and also fairly unfed but it was a far greater pleasure than I had expected. I shall save my usual cynicism and comments about VENUES and such things because I met some VERY nice people and felt very welcome. Therefore restraint of pen and tongue.p3085621p3085629p3085642




Having recovered somewhat from my VODAFONE hysteria as I tried to open one simple page and the green light on the “GPRS we are paying $80 a month for high speed and not getting it” modem – I now acknowledge that SPRINGTIME has come here in BILAMBIL and the many ” irons in the fire ” are doing whatever it is that ” irons in the fire” do. 


One reference says it has to do with the blacksmith trade. A skilled blacksmith has “a well-trained apprentice who maintains such control of the bellows and the placement of the irons that each is ready in turn at the anvil and hammer…’Too many irons in the fire’ would mark an inefficient smith or one with an unskilled apprentice. Figurative use of either saying takes us back only to the middle of the sixteenth century.” From “2107 Curious Word Origins, Sayings & Expressions from White Elephants to a Song and Dance” by Charles Earle Funk (Galahad Book, New York, 1993).

Ah. So we have a lot of irons in the fire. Hopefully not TOO many. Anyways some of them are getting really hot. So today we were in Southport at GRIFFITH UNIVERSITY interview rooms in AUSTRALIA FAIR. Interesting indeed. Eating in Cafe Moccacino looking out over the BROADWATER.

The next iron in the fire will take us south to LISMORE on THURSDAY. Giving me a nice variety of meetings as well. I DO like going to NEW places and unknown and doing things I have NEVER done before with people I have never done with them.

There is other MEGA BIG news which is not mine to make public. Then I am going to visit with my own kinfolk again. Cause I have had some mighty lonely lost times this year.

Today’s foto is –


The white house in the middle of the picture – well that’s where we live Izzy and me. Below us are 300 mango trees. Far behind is Mt Warning. The volcanic core of a caldera in Northern NSW. They say there are brown snaked out the back – down towards the Dell. I haven’t been down there.


There is a song on the COAST FM radio station here which I love. It says YOU PROMISED YOU’D BE HERE WHENEVER IT SNOWS.

I like it. There’s a slight drop in the temperature.



That is a statement in itself. A situation  intense enough to drive me to taking my lunch in a corner of the Coffee Club – an experience I have never succumbed to before – other than sitting with Reggie before he died at Coolangatta Coffee Club and doing early morning meetings in Brisbane CBD. But I have never been DRIVEN to eat their food or sit quietly in the designer created corner – but I did today having tried Robina Town Centre first and finding that They had removed the Centre.  Which was a shame because I had it in mind to try to hit the golf ball into the middle of the lake but I couldn’t find the lake or the Golf Balls.

So we went on to Australia Fair – Kati B had called en route to Robina to tell us her chiken had had babies. Two babies and Kati B and IMM had built an A Frame for them to live in. What she actually said when she called was – You are a grandmother – news that startled me.

Then on to A.F in Southport. Iz thought we might have been taking the picturesque road into Southport from the M1. HaHa. Picturesque ! Ah well. Southport it was and I wasn’t holding out much hope but I like to take some time and see places. There has to be reason –  sound reason for people liking places and it tantalises me when I can’t see the reason. Once before I went to Southport and found a shop which sold tie dyed baby clothes and that endeared me a little. the other times I have been to Southport have involved traumas of various kinds so today was an emotionally neutral research expedition and it was interesting. Not interesting enough  to take any fotos – but interesting.

Today’s foto wich was NOT taken today is – from early August 2007 – one year ago. We were then living in Red Hill in Brisbane. 


We had encountered IKEA at LOGAN. We were truly IKEA virgins and haven’t been back for a second encounter.  We purchased a bed and a lounge and odds and ends which we assembled as per instructions and set up in the Glassey Gully flat. Note the Tuscan influence in the tiled floors. “Tuscan influence ” was a frequently used expression in the Brisbane real estate rentals sector. WHY ?


I think Izzy was recovering by then from his cardiac incident , working at Austlit and playing music in Bilambil on weekends. Now he is NOT. The lounge is on the front porch of the Cottage and we live together due to being PARTNERED.


This was the driveway of Glassey Gully. Steep. The street was so steep we struggled to walk out. Struggled to drive out.  The driveway was likewise. And it was a block of brick flats. I am not well suited to brick flats despite living for 5 years in Department of Housing in South Coogee.


Nevertheless we had some good times down in the Gully and in Paddington and Red Hill. I had never known Brisbane before and I fell in love with it. I stayed in love with Brisbane , so I did. The Jasmine bloomed on the brick walls and the  scrub turkeys roamed the streets only a few kilometres from the City Centre. 





IZZY IN SURFERS PARADISE. surfers and pyt 001

Life here in Bilambil borders on the insane. Borders on Queensland as well.  This week we have been to a cafe in SURFERS PARADISE where Phil E Berg was playing. To a wake at BILAMBIL SPORTS CLUB and then up to a farewell for AUSTLIT members at UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND and back to the Cottage to recover and look at 19th century Australia and the FAMILY TREE. I still do not like living at a distance from my children and grandchildren but am doing so for now.  So be it. I read a year or two back when I was doing the one year Ignatian online retreat about a deep willingness for things to be as they are. A passionate surrender. So I stay with that.

The winter days here in the North of NSW and South of Qld are sweet. Singlet and jeans weather with the occasional wearing of the Brogan. A heater at the feet of a night and a couple of doonahs and all is well.


Went to UQ yesterday for Cathy, Jim and Stephanie’s farewell to AUSTLIT. PIzza at the PIZZA CAFE and Life Water from Rosalie on the way home. More on the PETER KNOX website. Peter being Izzy’s alter ego.

For me – Home for the day. Once I lived very much more eremite than I do now that I live with Izzy and am drawn out into the world amongst personalities and philosophies with disquiet and confound me at times. A day out here with birds at the window and the deep silence of the Valley suits me very well before I engage again with the world into which I am not greatly inclined to indulge. I re-located my HERMITARY website and am deeply reassured by that. Izzy is a good man to live with for peacefulness and ease. Behind me is the Dell and the Forest with the winter birds – subtle they are. It is at this time of the year that the owl is in the pines on the drive when we come home at night. The wee wren is in the tree behind the Cottage and the two willie wagtails rouse and babble while we eat bagels on the porch. I think its a porch. It could be a patio or a verandah. Izzy will be out there today. Down at Stokers Siding rehearsing with Phil E Berg. Me I ain’t leaving home. I have had it again. I would rather be riding in a STARWAGON with 2 little girls or talking to my son and his lilttle lady. I would rather be eating good food in a Kalang living room with my daughter and her IMM and watching Izzy at open mike night at the FEDERAL HOTEL in BELLINGEN but I am not.

So I shall stay home. Its been 3 years since my father died and it would have been his birthday this last week had he lived. So I put as much of his family tree as I was able on the heritage website and now I stay home all day and consider things As they are now. Standing before the situation and waiting for an internal response to emerge. AUSTLIT PIZZA 007 Joan Keating, Peter Knox and me with Roger in the background. PIZZA CAFE UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND. The very same cafe that Kati B and I retreated to after our marathon CITY CAT ride . On that occasion Kati B required a fortifying ale to recover from the hours in the sun with  fumes , tourists and sunstroke. On this occasion AUSTLIT provided the pizza and sparkling water. Hi Joan !

IZZYS MAY 2008 003IZZYS MAY 2008 006 ARMIDALE MIGHT BE COLDER BUT HEARTS ARE WARM. We took the little girls to breakfast at Maccas and then on to ice cream in the new ARMIDALE Centro. That means little to other people – but to me its as meaningful as Ralph Waldo Emerson. As meaningful as a gigantic pumpkin on a Scottish beach at Findhorn. Which did turn out to be meaningful for me – because its from Sutherland Shire that The Mackays and the McLeods came to marry James Bell in the 1800s preparing the way for my own entrance into this world.  I do not know what is being prepared now in these years away from my loved ones but something is.

SO- a day at home making family trees – sorting out affairs. Hanging washing on the line stretched along the back porch. Looking over the 2nd chapter of izzy’s thesis. Wondering how close Durham actually is to York and whether or not that was a Catholic Chapel Carol discovered under the Institute Hall in York. Same as Dempsey’s in Sydney. A day reading more about Henry Kendall who is a classic progressing alcoholic and a right  dick and dodgy as well.  The whiskey grass is red along the front drive here and the lawn is getting a wee bit long because the DOS has been away with family in Newport.

That’s winter in Bilambil. Singlet and shorts. Barefooted winter days.

IZZYS MAY 2008 005



Slept alone last night. Something I havent done for a very long time. Something I did do for a very long time indeed.  I haven’t heard from Izzy and would imagine that CAMERON’S POCKET is not in mobile range. Its 70 kms from Mackay or someplace and we are only   11 kms from Tweed Heads and the Gold Coast  but other than here on top of the ridge there is no mobile reception. Down at Kalang, They have none either so way up there – well – the chances of fones working is REMOTE.

TODAY i am going to Banora Point at 9.30 am to meet Joanne and then we proceed in the golden Prelude to Broadbeach for the Convention.  I haven’t been to this Convention since it was held at Greenmount resort. Greenmount has ATMOSPHERE. Down at Rainbow Bay and Coolangatta on the beach with tropical pool. In addition it was easily reached from my place. Now its at ALBERT WATERWAYS –  which i doubt is on any water other than man-made canals. Someplace through the hectic drives of Pacific Fair. I have tried for 7 years to come in for a landing on the Gold Coast. I have searched for its soul and beauty which i know will be there – but not for me. i HAVE NOT been able to find it . However today I shall go to Broadbeach and turn left away from the ocean and go into a HALL and see who is there.

I am taking a look at fotos taken in the 3 years  I have lived here. Its 3 years since Marian died and 3 years since Dad died in June.  3 years since I moved into this Cottage . 7 years since I came to Tweed. A lot has happened in that time. My Mum died. Madeline was born and Jim brought Jo and Kathy home. So – doing a bit of reflecting is appropriate methinks. In this time I have stopped teaching school and met IZZY. I think myself we are about to change a whole lot of things with the property up for sale  and I am using this week to do some amalgamation of the mind and chemicalisation of the spirit.

I am drinking white tea from the blue mug we bought at Stokers Siding and adjusting to my brand new laptop which needs its own smart bag.  i met a ‘cool’ man the other day. One who noticed my Crumpler bag. The usual pull was there and then I recalled the danger of ‘COOL’ to me – pulled back into witness mode and thought about Izzy.


The Cottage is truly in order except for the laundry where we have things stored. The washing is on the back line under the porch. I was never one to be thrilled about the washing on the line but I am now. Affairs in order is what  I now like after years of BEDLAM. Next door has a dog. They have always had a little dog. Now they have a very big dog. They are nice people and have told me to tell them if Big Dog bothers me. I don’t like to do that especially If I am the one to be moving on while they stay but Bog Dog has taken to lumbering over here and scaring off all the wee animals which have always been safe here. He barks a lot too. Just startled him then on my side of the fence. Not even all that sure he’s a safe Big Dog. Anyways , for now, lets give him some time to grow past puppyhood. Perhaps he will settle down.

I have a LongNose in the grass below the cottage and a Coucal family comes in season. This week, Willie Wagtails come and sit on the turned-off electric fence and wiggle at Izzy. My Nana Bell loved Willie Wagtails. She loved snapdragons too and had them either side of the red path at Rosebery in Tweedmouth Avenue. her hair was long – longer than mine I think but not curling or white, She brushed it every night in the old 100 strokes way while mine is a matted tangle.  

My skin is peeling off as a result of the Cell Food Ointment Izzy bought for me.  It seems to be stripping away years of old skin and leaving a clean smoothness. Not to be used on more vulnerable skinned areas I have learned from experience but rather spectacular on old leathered skin.

I am choosing clothes for today. The weather is warm. Autumn is rather special here on Tweed. Nevertheless I think I shall wear my dag pants passed on to me from izzy and a singlet with a black sheer top and some form of sandal. Was going to go for GC elegance but I would rather not. I shall take a foto of me ready to go to a Gold Coast Convention wearing a slight reminiscence of Bellingen.







Well Izzy is still travelling North. I went North in 1973 with Tony. A long meandering trip in the mini-moke with Spunky the Dog. This time I am at home and they are still travelling on.  Last time, we had a tent and we lived on the 4mile beach in Port Douglas. I haven’t been back since then. Today when I went to Morning Meeting Steve was there – down from Airlie Beach. Sarah and he had flown down for $79 each with another young woman from South Africa who is a skipper up there. They are down for the Convention at Albert Waterways which in my misery  I had forgotten was on. So likely I shall do that and deal with my deep resentments and hurt. Now I know I can fly up there and visit and stay in the Caravan park where they work and do my meetings. Yes thank you. Then I will NOT  be driving for 2 days each way.

IN THE MEANTIME – I keep tidying the Cottage and pulling out weeds with izzy’s red gloves.  Laughing about the stretcher which was bigger than the tent and wondering  what we will be doing with the tent which is larger than the stretcher.

Wondering too where he will fit up there in Wintermoon. Steve says that a friend of theirs ELMA who has a clothing stall at Wintermoon had gone in early and put her tent up and reckons she was lucky to do so because its going to be packed out. Steve said it was a Booze Fest last year so this  year they have tightened things up by charging $100 a day and allowing no at gate admissions. Sounds like a Woodstock idea that one. Remember how well THAT worked. I have sprayed WHITE OIL on the gardenia . I didn’t even know what WHITE OIL was until Kate told me and sure enough for $3.75 – there’s enough for 100 gardenia bushes. I have only one – not being naturally inclined to gardening. I took the mattock to the one beside The Cottage and it looks better. I do like gardens but – they affect me like cooking. They look and taste splendid when someone else looks after them. I do however like my gardenia . Kerry and her Wayne gave it to me before the 2 milkshakes incident at the New Leaf cafe in Murwillumbah and before they moved to Kyogle and I have it still in the big green pot and special soil . Mebbe one day ……..