Ode to the coastal woodland

The season has changed.  The distinct fresh bite in the morning air is gone.  The sun rises earlier.  The air is more humid and it’s definitely hotter.  But there remains a cooling afternoon breeze so the weather is still perfect for taking a walk.

At first glance the coastal woodlands near my home seem sparse and without colour; nothing could be further from the truth.

I headed out for my walk and my iPod went flat so I was forced to take a slower more observant pace as I headed out along the track.  I have always found the patterns of nature amazing; the curvature of a leaf as it unfurls, the crackled texture of bark or the discoloration of foliage as a plant dies . . .

I was able to relish in the sight of kapok flowers, grevillea combs, turkey bush and pandanus; all bursting with colour which I struggled to capture in my photo essay.  I also saw a bower bird’s nest and many green ant nests which had neatly stuck leaves together for shelter, many brightly coloured parrots and a spectacular golden orb spider . . .

This walking track which is less than a kilometre from my home is rich in colour, sound and diversity.  Having my iPod working wouldn’t have meant I would have missed it but I would not have been as immersed in it.  I was forced to take the time to observe and wonder.  I was doing the tropical equivalent of stopping to ‘smell the roses’.

The best part was that I didn’t see another person!

What has slowed you down recently?  What part of your environment caught your eye?


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