Flooding in Nimbin

Just a short video of the amount of rain falling down here in Nimbin, NSW.

Not even the birds are out. Not a sound. Apart from the rain cascading down the drive, along the stairs and flooding the road. Not even a sound from the frogs which are usually quite deafening in rainy weather.

The Goolmanghar creek has busted it banks. The roads and bridges are of course totally out of action. 

The ski is white. The mountain is shrouded in a thick whitish grey  mantle.

Dogs are inert on their pad inside the house and the cat stretched languorasly  on the sofa. All oblivious to the torrential rains that are soaking the land in a thunderous fashion 

The huge tanks that we use for our drinking water are filling up and overflowing.​

Many people are stranded in town unable to reach their destination. It will not be wise to venture on the roads at the moment. 

The 2 little bridges down the road  are totally impassable and one could be in real strife if that was attempted.

What is the best ting to do right now? Well, I am going back to my book and enjoy this lazy day.

Till next time.

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​joy

Hail or Hell

Well, here we are again in summer almost tho. The nights are still chilly and the temperature has not yet gone through the roof. It may come….it is not too far away.

After the storm of hail that we had a couple of weeks ago, I thought we might be at the beginning  of the ice age. Violent winds swept through the bamboos and the trees, rain came pelting down with thunder and lightening. But the worst of all was the hail. Big ones. They were almost as big as tennis ball… The whole garden was covered in a blanket of white thick ice. We thought we could have been in the Alps somewhere. Down it came with an almighty force. It pelted down. The noise was deafening. We could not see a few metres in front of us. Having a tin roof….and no cat on it I can assure you, the force was deafening, not even a bird could be seen or heard. The dog screamed to be let in and the chickens took refuge inside their coop. Not a sound could be heard except the roar of the hail. The temperature also fell dramatically and some jumpers  resurfaced for the next few hours.

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In a very short time, the whole garden and property were under ice. We dared walk out after the 20 mns ordeal. It was slippery and the ice from the hail was at least 4 to 5cm thick. We were scared walking around. We had never see anything like this before. The ice under our feet was slippery and treacherous. As we made our way towards the vegetable garden, we were just staggered at the devastation around us. The corn which was ready to pick had been shredded to a pulp. The other veggies were gone and looked as if they had been descended upon by a swarm of locust. Nothing left. The little gherkins which staring to poke through with little yellow flowers broken, hammered, hacked and looked pitiful. And as we made our way around the same spectacle presented itself…devastation everywhere. Then, we noticed a carpet of green on the ground about 2 cm thick, we lifted our head and most trees were also totally defoliated. The force of nature and its brutality suddenly hit us. We were awestruck in front of such calamity. How we could feel for the victims of tornadoes, hurricanes and flooding!  The victims of bush fires and tsunami! We still had our life intact, the damage was only the plants. We were lucky really that nothing worse had happened.

The ice persisted on the ground for 48 hours in big piles around the house. I could go on enumerating the extend of the damage, but there is no point in all that.

Over the next few day, I noticed that some of the zucchini were starting to grow a few leaves, a few vegetables managed to struggle and put new shoots. But the damage had been too great for them to produce anything. So, patiently, I started to prepare a few trays of seedlings and bought a few others. Hopefully, we might gather a few vegetables a little late.

The drought is almost gone. The rain should be replenishing the water tanks for another year so that we would not have to recycle the water too much. The grass has managed to push through a few centimetres and the cows seem to appreciate the fresh shoots poking through. They still bellow at 4 o’clock for extra feed. They are never satisfied…

Today, while in the gallery doing some voluntary work I managed to sit on the bench soaking the warmth of the sun for a few minutes, we can start to feel the first days of summer approaching with lots of rain coming up our way hopefully.

Big spring cleaning is also under at the house. Carpets, jumpers, curtains are all getting a good shake and a wash. Winter clothes are being packed away till next year and summer clothing is already filling the cupboards. Mind you, I’ll have to throw a fair bit away also. Every year, I go through a good clean up of what has not been worn for a while and give it to charity. There are always the ones that I have been reluctant to dispose of. Sentimental value I suppose. But it seems that I go through the same thing every year. This time it is for real… so I say anyway.But the whole lot goes. I spoke to one of the artists at the gallery and she will be taking the odd pieces of silks and cotton that are no longer in use. I am sure Pauline will find a good idea to utilise them.

Well, back to my cleaning and till next time.                 

Hot and dry spring

It is hot and windy. The spring winds are dry and the earth is parched. Some rain is definitely needed at this stage. Some plants are already suffering as we can’t attend to the watering of all of them. We are on tank water hence restricted to a certain extend.
What I have noticed in times of stress is all the bamboos that we planted are shedding their leaves. The lawns are full of dried leaves. In our area it could be a fire hazard and can be quite scary.

it is a funny thing to say that all is dry, it is in a way, but our valley is green very green. There are, I was told by old timers around here, countless springs running underground. it is not too far from the truth, because our dam is always full even in times of dryness as it is at the moment. Sure, it does go down a little but never dries out. hence, yesterday Peter used the pump to fill the big tank for the vegie garden. This tank is only for our vegetables and a few plants outside.

The bottle brushes are in blooms and the parrots and there first thing in the morning to sample the first appearance of nectar on the flowers. They squawked all day long and fight with the native Minahs to steal this honey on the trees. Huge amount of turtle doves and crested pigeons have their home around here also, but I suspect very strongly it is because of the chicken run and all the grains that they can scavenged when they enter the coop. They don’t even fly away anymore. Just walk nonchalantly a little way and come back as soon as we go.

The bougainvillaeas (Boogies) are all in blooms and look just stunning and resplendent with their new leaves and flowers. They are a delight and add a superb colour to the garden.

Boogies in Bloom
Boogies in Bloom

Salmon colour boogie

Boogies in bloom
Boogies in bloom

One big mother hen (Lady Grey) a grey Wyandote has hatched a few eggs and we have 4 little cuties running, cheeping, and eating as fast as they could. As if they could not wait growing up. They have found a way to get out of the double wire fence and they mix quite happily with the rest of the flock. As soon as they see me coming they run right back inside. We are just worried that the local python will make a nice dinner out of them one day, so we are vigilant.

Stretching for a drink
Stretching for a drink
Lady Grey and her chicks
Lady Grey and her chicks
Half of the flock running around in the garden.
Half of the flock running around in the garden.

With the planting of massive amount of trees when we first arrived in this valley, we have noticed also an increase migration of native birds. Grey and white pigeons are nesting in the bamboos, rails are frequenting more openly the area of the dam which is lush with native vegetation, the swamp hens have really decided to nest also on the huge clumps of sedge around the dam, the ducks arrive in the early morning for a dip and a flutter in the dam. The other day a huge goanna scampered around the cows. This big lizard is common around here but had not been seen it for quite a while. Cows were not fussed.

Yesterday saw the arrival of the local dingo. The swamp hens , the birds, the ducks made a raucous commotion and started hounding him away. Even our dog got into the chase and the dingo ran across the fields and onto the neighbour’s paddocks at great speed. Poor dingo not a hope around here. He was safe in the other field as John always feeds him.The animals have become very territorial around here.

I know that our little pet Butchie is on a few eggs at the moment. She knows when the dog is being fed and arrives just on time for her evening meal. The only one at the moment. But she is here everyday at 5 o’clock on the dot.

So, yes, spring is here and with it a renewal of flora and fauna. Superb sunsets and the early mornings mist are a feast to the eyes. The days are longer and longer, the air is sweet of nectar and perfume. The crickets have started they nightly din which can be quite deafening at times. The frogs are also croaking more prolifically no doubts looking for mates. As long as they are not cane toads, the scourge of this area.

In all that the body and mind just witness the manifestation of renewal, the beauty of nature, the infinite gift that we are given to see all of this with all our heart and soul. No fights, no lies, no quibbling, no politicians, no crisis, no wars, just a spectacle of natural beauty unfolding in front of us with all it has to offer for us to blend in and enjoy. A true feeling of joy, serenity, calm and peace. If only our mind would keep quiet for a little while……

Till next time.