Familiar faces

October 25, 2017

As at my last two homes, I see a lot of wildlife just from my decks and verandahs, perhaps because I choose homes that are part eyrie. Not having heard kookaburras here yet, I was delighted to see this one last evening, just metres away from my side verandah. Such a handsome fellow! Next day, […]

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Treetop home

October 19, 2017

There have been no posts for a while as I’ve been immersed in the chaos of moving house again. This time — the absolute last! — it was to a rural town, where I share my block with this Tawny Frogmouth, one of my favourite birds. A quiet, retiring, serenely beautiful bird, with ‘eyelashes’ to […]

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Wintry work

September 19, 2017
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This drawing was meant for Chapter 5, ‘Living for Weekends’, of The Woman on the Mountain. We’d moved there into the still very basic cabin, and I’d taken the writing work from my old design firm… In a way it’s as if I remained part of the company even after I’d left and moved back […]

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Inland rocks

September 12, 2017
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In the Nymboida-Binderay National Park, the water’s power is strong; visitors are warned of it. White-water kayakers take off from here at Platypus Flat. I stay on shore — deal with a flat tyre — and simply enjoy the sound of the water. The current-combed trees show the force of the Nymboida at times, but […]

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Rocky life

September 1, 2017
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I love rocks. I can admire the grandeur of large scale features like this Natural Arch on the Headland Walk at Crowdy Bay National Park, but it’s the close-up details that attract me most. That small group of rocks was closest to my camp. It is amazingly varied, as I’ll show you. They are sharp […]

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Woman on the move

August 21, 2017
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As you know, I love sunrises. This clearly not at my place. Actually, I don’t have a ‘place’ right now. For the next month I am homeless! The Woman is on the move, national park hopping to re-connect with nature, before I have to live in a house… in a town (!) … but with […]

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Al fresco loo

July 26, 2017

The sun on your knees, a view of birds and bush… who’d want an indoor loo? This sketch and extract is from The Woman on the Mountain, Chapter 14, ‘The Simple Life’. ‘Contrary to popular mythology, the simple life is not found in the country but in the city, where you simply pay your bills […]

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The water word is out

July 17, 2017
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After the White-faced Heron staking a claim on my pond, the word seems to have got out to other water birds that the pond is here and the surrounding lawn is soggy enough to easily poke a long waterbird beak into. A small troupe of iridescent Straw-necked Ibis were here the other day, strutting and […]

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Woman at work

July 10, 2017

This drawing was meant for Chapter 12 of The Woman the Mountain, ‘While the woman’s away…’ which is mainly about the wildlife moving in and taking over when I wasn’t there. Here’s the relevant extract about one of the ultimately futile attempts to keep them out… When the rain finally stopped, I began fortifying the […]

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 Pond tenant

July 3, 2017
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I have never had a waterbird on my shed roof, yet a few days ago this solitary White-faced Heron was using it as a lookout post. A common enough heron apparently, but not here, not yet, to me. The only water nearby is my rather pathetic pond-cum-drainage attempt. Could that be what had attracted him? […]

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Winter blooms

June 28, 2017

Kind of creepily flesh-like, with its pairs of pointy-toed pink ‘legs’ and that gaping orifice;  kind of disgustingly gooey, with those red wet lumps, which yet are almost like the secretions of raw wounds. The pink fleshy stems add to the plant or animal dilemma (hence the ‘phalloid’ species). But the ‘yuck’ factor increases at […]

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Wet school days

June 19, 2017

Few modern parents would allow their children to take the risks that I frequently did to get to school in weather; well, perhaps they still would in the country… From The Woman on the Mountain, Chapter 13: Wet and Wild By the time I was thirteen I was used to our farm creek flooding, when […]

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