Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Sitting on the Dock of the Bay

Moreton Bay creates the long coastline in and around Brisbane.  It is a sparkling, blue, gorgeous bay that sailboats cut in the wind.  Small white fish leap into the wind.  Blue bottle jellyfish tease and taunt and tarry just beyond the splash onto the pier.

Today was another absolutely stunning homeschool day beside the bay.  This bay includes nearly all of the coastline between Sunshine Coast to the north and Gold Coast to the south.  The town of Wynnum rests along this bay's shore like a floating dream.  Yacht clubs, seaside bike and walking trails, beach side swimming pool, dozens of play areas and climbing areas, kite flyers aplenty, and the luckiest homesteaders on the continent live in Wynnum!

This area has banyan trees, palms of many kinds, and knock-kneed mangroves.  Ibis, seagulls, and dozens of other bird species skim the waters and follow the tidal movement.  The bay is the only place in Australia where dugong gather into herds.  Whales, dolphins, sharks and loggerhead turtles also call this bay their home.

A cooling, steady breeze clears the head and brightens the smile of MY two homeschoolers!

There was snail play, crab discoveries, sea grass investigations, seagull chasing, blue bottle jellyfish observations, climbing, and splashing.  There was LOTS of splashing!
At one point, we stood on a fishing pier and shouted out to the sailors on the sea:  WE GET TO LIVE HERE!!!!!!!!

The kids standing at the end of a long pier, mud flats ahead

We have been suffering from homesickness something terrible.  I'm not going to hide it:  every one of us has had our moments of tears and heart ache.  We have had our days of staying home and crying on each other's shoulders.  So, a day at the beach is very welcome!  Our faces glowed with the day and we have carried that feeling all through the evening.

A twelve inch blue bottle jellyfish, washed up onto the beach

Wynnum is my favorite place in Queensland so far.  We have traveled both north and south, and will continue to visit many places on our frequent road trip.  But this place feels magical to me.  I have sat alone on the seaside wall with a very high tide and just let the wind blow around me, past me, almost through me.  The feeling of this is like returning to a place I have never been before.  It's like returning to my water home.

The kids running to the end of a very long pier, towards the water!
Somehow, each of us is feeling the pull of the sea.  Bonobo explores and runs free.  Watching him on a beach is like seeing him return to center.  He is confident and joyful and native.  The sea is jealous of the green of his eyes.

The Doctor is quite sure she is going to give up all other plans and become a marine biologist and study the sea.  She gets dreamy talking about the life beneath the white caps.  Today, she did something that shocked me.  She is not an "outside person", and generally prefers indoor activity.  Today, she sat on the end of this pier, picked up some sea snails, gave them names, and claimed them as friends (until returning them to their little home near the waves.)  Her coppery, red hair blows in the wind like a banner kite!  It's glorious to see!

One is named "Freddie", the other, "Highmore"
Off in the distance, we could see the international Port of Brisbane.  Quite a sight!  To a flatlander and middle-of-a-large-continent-dweller, such myself, it looked like CG!

Port of Brisbane
Moreton Bay, or Quandamooka, as the aborigines call it, was "discovered" and explored by Captain James Cook in the later 1770s.  The long-term history of this bay is one of ups and downs.  There have been aborigines living in the area for hundreds of years.  The arrival of the Brits was very unwelcome by the Nooghie, Noonuccal, and Goenpul people who tried to protect their home and hunting lands.  Intensive European use of the land was staved off until the very late 1890s.

Bonobo on the rocks
Brisbane has had two devastating floods:  2008 and 2011.  This flooding causes much damage to the environs in and around the bay.  This gem of a bay is protected and well-cared for.

We send our GREAT LOVE to all of our friends and family,
 and we encourage you to get outside and ROAD TRIP!

1 comment:

  1. Glad you are enjoying the sea so much! It is a gorgeous place! You should check out Wellington Point Peninsula too - you can walk across to a little island at low tide which is fun! Oh and Coochiemudlo Island is another cool place to explore - you take a ferry across to the island - it's only a short trip but a pretty cool place to hang out.
    We will have to arrange a time to come along on an adventure with you one day.


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