Rainbow Beach Lagoon.
One of the most perfectly sublime days ever. The water in the lagoon was a complete glass-out, and from the kayak I could see ALL. THE. THINGS. A big skulking flathead, many bream and three turtles.
Then I started to spot the sleeping stingrays – tails like long dead-straight sticks are the giveaway. Once you stop to look at them (because they seem to straight to be a stick or something) it’s easy to see that at one of the ends there is a blankety looking triangular thing. Then you spot the bumps where their eyes are, but their eyes are closed – they’re sleeping.
I wish I could successfully capture the crazy way a stingray awakens and takes off at the same time. It’s like a wizard whirling a cloak. They flutter, spin and are gone. I only woke one up, and not on purpose – an unintentionally enthusiastic stroke of a paddle. The others I crept around, just looking at them slumber. Their strange shape and the patterns around their eyes.
The flathead also looked quite prehistoric. There was only the one, lying on the bottom, camouflaged to the nth degree. I couldn’t even be sure exactly what it was; the tail looked stumpy, and I could see teeth protruding from its mouth. Do flathead usually hang out on their own? I’m not sure.
Breakfast was conjured by DB – pikelets, with an excess of cornflour making them sort of elasticated. But I didn’t cook them and they were great with butter and honey on the chair out the back.
I’m so frustrated at not being able to describe the blues of the water that were all around me. The pale pale aqua closer to the sand, which was layered like cake before a steep slope into the sea. Then it became greener a metre or so out, deepening into a aquamarine blue.
Over the end of the sandbar, as the sea encroached upon it, the ripples crisscrossed, working their way further and further in. The sand cliffs across the water seemed to glow egg yolk yellow in the sunshine. No clouds. Not too much wind. A day I could have ordered from a catalogue.
There was, just to add in a little dose of reality, a stellar parenting moment when Small Z, for the fifth time, yanked on the rope trailing behind my paddleboard and as I teetered over the water I because certifiably unhinged and shrieked at her to leave me the hell alone, that she was a moment-wrecker and blah blah blah blah.
I stormed back to the boat (as best you can on a paddleboard – lots of furious stabbing of water) while she stayed away for a good 20 minutes, too scared to come back, skulking around under the trampolines like a woebegone leper. When she finally came back aboard, we both apologised – I told her that her penance was either to stamp on the washing in the bucket 500 times or make lunch. She chose the latter, which was fine with me. I would rather stamp up and down on clothes in a bucket that throw together a lunch that will almost definitely be rejected by at least one person.
DB broke her surfing curse – she has been crippled by her fear of big waves after being dumped a few times. Today she surfed in the shallows with M for an hour or two and then agreed to go out to the point, where she rode a big green wave and had three surfie dudes clapping her from the shore. Hooray!!
Finished the day with a walk across the dunes, up the beach and the track to the lighthouse. There were whales so close to the coast I could hear them breathing, in their big cavernous way. There were at least two pods going by, spouting their way north.
Up near the lighthouse was a guy playing a bit of guitar – he ended up showing us photos on his phone of his trip to Three Hummock Island a few months ago – amazing!! He’d read Escape to an Island by Eleanor Alliston, and had been to stay there for five days in March. He’d also been to King Island and down the west coast. Basically he had done all the things I hope we do from October onwards. His pictures were fantastic – it was very encouraging.
He was up near the lighthouse on Double Island Point staying in the lighthouse accommodation and assisting the revegetation of the area – he said he did it annually and it was always his favourite two weeks of the year. Hello Paul, if you’re out there! It was great to meet you 🙂