Archive for the 'Meanderings and Musings' Category

Saying it just like it is….

March 24th, 2012

This is such a good clip. The challenge for politicians is to say NO. No we can’t spend money willy nilly, no we can’t fund every charity that starts up. No we can’t fund every grant application. No we can’t give you money just to have a baby, no we can’t give you money for sitting on your backside doing nothing when you are absolutely capable of working and there are jobs available for you. (Genuinely unemployed do need looking after..). Maybe if the politicians made tougher sensible choices nobody would vote for them but hey we are turning our society into one where too many people believe they are entitled to our working peoples (employed people) money via the Government, without contributing directly themselves. We have so many charities and non profit groups doing the same things and huge big gaps in Government spending where there is no Government help for people truly in need. By way of example mental health is totally under funded!

We need some balance and some long hard looking at what we want our taxes spent on! The waste of money at all levels of Government is astronomical.. I believe our Council is much less wasteful than other layers of Government as we have taken a good hard look and trimmed wherever we could and yet, yes we still borrow and we still have debt. I do believe some debt is necessary just like a home mortgage is the only way to buy your own home but other than to build infrastructure debt at the Government level must be avoided.

Anyhow I will jump down off my high horse now… Please watch the clip. It is a good one…

Brilliantly put.


Stuck in the Dark Ages

March 1st, 2012

Does anyone have a copy of last weekends Weekend Australian Magazine? My letter was published I just found out, but our shop didn’t get the paper last weekend. This is what I wrote but you can’t access it online without a subscription.. It was in response to an article on forced marriages.. But it can equally apply to other so called cultural practices… Just imagine if we still hunted whales because it was ‘our culture’?

Stuck in the dark ages.

When does culture become history? Isn’t it way past time that we simply say NO. No you cannot marry off your young under age daughters. No you cannot force your wives to dress covered in cloth from head to toe. No you cannot punish a woman for looking at a man. I am so tired of the excuse, and that is all that it is, an excuse, which permits people to behave badly simply because it is labelled culture or tradition! It is time that we grew up and consigned stupidity, laziness and persecution of innocent peoples and animals to the past.

A heart and soul? I think so

October 7th, 2009

I’m not a poet or all that clever with words but in response to Peter Chapman who recently implied that Hervey Bay was somewhat lacking in the heart and soul department, I can’t resist responding…

Hervey Bay has a strongly beating heart and a warm and wondrous soul. Our heart is not hard to find. You find it in all the people who pick up the litter on the beaches and roadsides without being asked, that lend a hand to a neighbour or friend in need, that smile and let you go in front of them at the supermarket when you only have two things to buy. You hear our heart beating in the people that know your dogs name (not yours) and say g’day each and every morning as you stroll along the beach or walkway, that grab the mail and papers from your yard when you go away, that send you the jokey emails cause they care enough to share a laugh with you, that volunteer at the library, gallery, meals and wheels and every where else there is a need just to help out and keep active, and that smile rather than frown and greet newcomers with a warm welcome and a ‘so where are you from mate?’ Our heart is beating in the Queenslanders from here and from afar that shake their heads but smile when we ex Southerners, prattle on about daylight saving and that game we love called aerial ping pong. Hervey Bay’s heart is found in all these people.

Ah but to our soul. Our soul is found in the clear blue skies and sunny warm days, the beautiful blue ocean where fishes and coral abound, the green foreshore and bountiful parklands full of tall trees and native wildlife, the big sandy island known as Fraser and the adjoining wetlands known as the Great Sandy Strait. We see our soul reflected in the rivers that wind their way slowly through our rural hinterland and the beaches where we walk and play.

Our souls soar when we realise just how lucky we are to live in such a place as Hervey Bay. We come here because of its beauty, its wonderful climate it’s relaxed and laid back lifestyle and its community of people that come from everywhere and anywhere. Not for us the tall towers of steel, glass and concrete. Not for us the noisy traffic choked smelly streets of ‘the big smoke’. Not for us the impersonal hustle and bustle of city life. We treasure a low rise city where our children can run free and where us more elderly folk, can see out our days peacefully.

So Peter, we invite you to join with us in protecting and preserving our beautiful Bay. Hervey Bay is a very special place. We cherish it and try very, very hard to care for it. We don’t want it spoiled ‘by progress’. I am sure that you will find our heart does not beat within our buildings but it beats ever so steadily and strongly within our people and you will find that our soul is everywhere around us. Our soul is found in the warm clear air we breathe, the blue waters in which we play and the green lands on which we live. Welcome.

Fluoride – must we drink it?

February 8th, 2009

I have personal concerns about mass medicating our community but have recently received enough email correspondence to raise the issue again. The Queensland State Government has legislated that all Queensland Local Governments must introduce flouride into our water supplies. This means that fluoride will become increasingly prevalent in our environment as well as inside us.

We will be paying to water our garden, to swim and to shower and bath in fluoride as well as to drink it and cook with it. There are many people who think this will be a good thing as it will reduce tooth decay. There are many other people, myself included, who wonder if the costs (both health and financial), outweigh the benefits.

In these, our scientific and medically advanced times, surely we know enough to be sure. Is fluoride good for us or is it bad for us? Or is the evidence so murky one way or the other that we should wait till we are sure? I often wonder why some diseases are increasing in frequency with our communities. Why are there more children diagnosed with autism than were in the past for example?

Personally I prefer to avoid being forced to ingest a substance that will have no direct benefit on my 50 plus year old teeth but may in fact have negative consequences for the rest of my body to which I am still somewhat attached. I am not sure that at this late stage continued debate is worthwhile but it is an election year. So let the debate continue. After all shouldn’t we be the ones deciding the quality of the water we pay to drink?

The Senility Prayer

October 29th, 2008


God grant me the senility to forget  the  people  I  never liked anyway,
the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
and the eyesight to tell the difference.

Sounds of silence!

October 23rd, 2008

It’s Friday. Yeah! No meetings today. No rush this morning so I take time to read the paper before setting out for my morning walk quite a bit later than usual. My wonderful companion Sharna is still sporting her shaved torso after underging scans etc earlier in the week, but she is always keen to sniff and smell and see what has changed along the pathway since yesterday morning. The sky is blue and the sun is shining. Hardly a cloud in the sky and no wind. A perfect Hervey Bay morning.

As we walk through the vine forest to the beach I notice the tide is retreating and the sand is still coated in a layer of green. A usual occurrence at this time of year. The shoreline is dotted with birds. Two pure white  egrets (I think..) poke their beaks into the muddy sand for breakfast as do our small group of pied oystercatchers which have been visiting these last few weeks. Their bright red beaks and feet and black and white plumage make them easy to spot. Seagulls and sandpipers complete the picture along the waters edge but looking inland, along the edge of the forest, I spot ‘Ozzie1’ or ‘Ozzie2’ (yes we have two Ospreys but I can’t tell them apart) resting in his favourite dead tree. High up he sits surveying his terrain. Rainbow bee eaters dart between the shoreline Casuarinas and butterflys flit this way and that.

Looking down I notice many Ladybirds on the sand. More and more of them are here so I’m careful where I place my feet. These little red and black insects are here in their thousands it seems. I wonder what draws them to the beach as I have not noticed them before. They fly away when I approach or sit and reorganise their wings folding and unflolding them. I hope that they find what they are looking for.

I can’t help but feel uplifted. The last few weeks have been tough ones so it is with a renewed sense of pleasure in the simple natural beauty of life that lifts my spirits. I enjoy the peaceful sounds of nature and the sheer beauty of this small patch of preserved vine forest and beautiful beach. Once again I rejoice at the simple pleasure of being so very lucky to live here and to be able to walk along such a lovely stretch of coastline whenever I please.

Just before I reach my pathway home I hear a drone. The sound is a plane approaching. I stop and look to the sky expecting one of our frequent light planes to be travelling past but no, I can’t see anything. The noise increases and as I look further afield I watch as a large jet approaches. The bright orange Jetstar logo and silver fuselage glint in the morning sunshine. I wonder how many people are visiting us for the first time or returning to the city that they call home. I think about the many plane trips I seem to make these days and how easy it is to travel to places far away. The contrast between my silent, peaceful natural surrounds and the noisy but magnificent silver aeroplane is stark. I admire how clever mankind is. That we can build such beautiful machines to fly through the skies and take us to every far corner of this, our planet Earth, is a reflection of the cleverness of human achievement.

I return home wondering how we can maintain the right balance. How can we preserve and protect everything that is good and wonderful and beautifully natural upon our planet while at the same time digging the earth and damming our rivers to supply the food, water and minerals that we use to survive and proliferate? How many people is the right amount of people that this planet can support and how do we decide? How many noisy planes can fly over my otherwise serene neighbourhood before I feel annoyed and invaded by ‘progress’? The big questions and the little questions. I return home thankful that I live here. Our Fraser Coast is truly a place to be treasured.