Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Our walk to Muttonbird Island

Sami really craves rhythm in her life so I've created a rough plan of how our week will go. We've assigned Monday morning as our hiking/bushwalking time. For our first hike, we decided to go to Muttonbird Island. In the photo below, our caravan (RV) park is just a little further along than the island just to the right of the center, and on the other side of the trees. From there, the walk was about 4kms/ 2.5 miles round trip. Nicholas walked most of the way and I carried him when he was tired.

So we set out together with some friends. School goes back tomorrow and Kyle, a 6 yr old friend (who used to be homeschooled but now goes to the Steiner school) and his mama Tracey (who is a good friend of mine) joined us. We stopped to admire some of the beautiful flowers, play at a playground, paddle in the creek and discuss whether we should cross there or go around the bridge. We decided the tide was moving too fast and we walked around. We walked along a bike path, the kids ran and looked in the bushes for lizards. We walked along a breakwall although AJ and Kyle ran along and climbed up on the rocks to look out to sea - maybe they'd see whales or turtles, climbed down the rocks into the calm water of the marina and tried to catch a fish with their bare hands. We continued on and this is the part of the view from half way up the island:
Looking back at the way we came:

Looking south:

We saw some dolphins in the water in front. Around the east side of the island we saw a large sea turtle. So beautifully graceful, all of them.

It was a perfect day. 75 degrees, a very light breeze. It was just glorious to be out and feel free. I saw a small yacht sail out of the marina and my mind thought fondly of previous sailing experiences and I had a deep longing to be on that boat. To sail out to sea, out of sight of land, ahh.
We learned about the migration cycle of the Shearwater birds from the boards that were posted on the island. We saw the nests that are little burrows to protect the eggs and chicks from the sea winds and predators. The birds themselves go in search of food during the day and only return in the evening. Eggs are not due to be laid for another month or so.
The water looked so beautiful. I felt so deeply peaceful and just full of life and something much greater being there, immersed in Mother Nature.
On the way back, we cooled off at a little beach in the marina area. We walked back along the breakwall and then decided to walk back along the beach. The kids found a variety of treasures including cuttlefish, feathers, shells, one sandal and....
a baby turtle!

My first thought was to leave it alone or help it back into the water. Tracey had a closer look and thought it was injured so we wrapped him (somehow they decided it was a boy), and took him to the Pet Porpoise Pool which was conveniently just across the road from where we were. They are like a very small sea world and take rescued sea animals. They have some beautiful peacocks wandering around their grounds and Nicholas was in awe of them.

After all of that excitement, we had a pretty relaxing afternoon. We went to the pool for a little while but apart from that, we just played some games and enjoyed being together.

I wonder what adventures await us this day?

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