8. Weekend Coffee Catch Up

How about these crazy times? Crazy maybe, but we can still have coffee and chat about our week, or the last couple of weeks. The crazy has started to lift in some states here in Australia while for Western Australia (WA) hard borders remain closed, which is odd considering their closest state, South Australia, has had fewer COVID cases in recent times.

Life is short. Make it sweet.

It’s hard on families separated by the interstate border closures so if we were having coffee, we’d probably talk about how we’re all missing friends and relatives in other states and when we hope to be able to see them again.

We visited the Buderim Ginger Factory at Yandina where we spent a happy hour on tour of the workings and tasting the produce. So, if we were have coffee this week, I have a selection of ginger nibbles. On the plate this week are dark chocolate-coated ginger chunks, “naked” ginger (no coating); and if we were in New Zealand we’d have Griffiths Ginger Nuts, a dunking favourite. I resisted the ginger jelly babies because it seemed a complete betrayal of my favourite black jelly babies; seriously, is there any better flavour.

Mum and signet spotted on early morning walk around the lake
behind the caravan park, Hervey Bay

Over the coffee mugs, I’d tell you we had a wonderful week in Hervey Bay catching up with friends, swimming in the warm bay waters, cycling the Esplanade; and eating wonderful food, and early morning beach walks. I managed two early walks that set me up for the day and I wonder why I don’t do it regularly. The birds and wildlife are reward enough not to mention the exercise and sense of smug righteousness wellbeing.

1980s Bridesmaids – in the middle

If we were having coffee I’d tell you we’ve experienced some amazing thunderstorms that reminded me that in Johannesburg, the summertime 5 o’clock downpour always caught me ten minutes into a half hour walk to the bus stop. I know right, why didn’t I leave earlier or later. It didn’t seem to matter because the thunderstorm waited until there was no place for me to shelter and then it let rip.

Best crunchy battered barramundi and fresh salad ever at Hello Harry, Maroochydore

We’ve tarried long enough in Queensland to catch the start of summer fruit harvesting and what a treat it has been to buy fresh from the farm gate. As we headed out of town from our two-nighter at Beerwah, in the heart of the Glass House Mountain ranges, we put $5 in the donation box for three beautiful pineapples. Strawberries, blueberries, pineapples and a pawpaw straight from the tree at an overnight camp.

As we share coffee and ginger nibbles, I’d tell you about our day trip around the Glass House Mountains. The forecast for thunderstorms and hail in the afternoon meant we had a small window during which to explore a small area of the National Park. Lunches and coffee-making goodies packed we set out on Scenic Route 24 loop. The idea was to visit as many lookouts as possible and hike one of the many marked tracks around the mountains.

Mt Tibrogargan (Left), Mt Cooee (middle), Mt Coonowrin (right). Three of the fourteen peaks of the Glasshouse Mountains

Whilst the traditional names for the hills themselves are very old, the term ‘Glasshouse Mountains’ was given more recently (recently?) by explorer Lieutenant James Cook on 17 May 1770. The peaks reminded Cook of the glass furnaces in his home county of Yorkshire.

The mountains hold spiritual and cultural significance for First Nation people, indigenous to the area and as a mark of respect to their culture the public are asked not to climb the summits. However, we were able to do the Mt Tibrogargan circuit walk, around the base of the mountain that gave 360 photo opportunities.

Lazy days in the sun
Lace Monitor, calls Mt Tibrogargan home.

If we were having coffee, we’d be in a cafe on the Woorim side of Bribie Island, with a breeze keeping it cool as we caught up – the sound of the sea and children playing, a backdrop to our chat. You’d see how well we are and you’d feel our excitement at being just 1, 200 kms from home. In part we want everything to slow down because we don’t want the adventure to end. Then we think of reconnecting with friends we’ve not seen for more than eight months and we’re excited.

We count ourselves lucky to have been able to check into a caravan park for four nights … just two blocks from the beach. That means beach walks, scuffing the ebb and flow, lots of ocean swims, reading, working through the puzzle book I bought in July and happy-snapping up every opportunity to keep making memories.

So my friends, this is it for this week’s coffee catch up. I wonder how you are travelling and whether things have relaxed a bit where you are. Stay well and keep safe.

PS: I’m binge watching Grey’s Anatomy …

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