Monday 17th January – Traveston.
Woke early and went for a walk. At this time of day, with the sun just rising the hills are seen in stark contrast of light and shadow. The sky is a cobalt blue with just a few wisps of white cloud over near the horizon. After the walk I did my back stretches as I have fallen out of routine for such a long time. I need to walk and do the back stretches every day – despite the rain. Despite the fact we have been travelling. Despite the fact I read my emails and other peoples blogs when I first rise. I have to get to that routine I maintained while working. Without Donnis here to push me perhaps readers can post a reminder from time to time?
Grrr! Went for a blood test at 8.30 but had forgotten to FAST! Have another appointment for Wednesday.
Did manage an appointment with the doctor later in the morning and discussed a number of mounting health issues.
OK. The thumb. Seems to working a lot better with a little discomfort from time to time.
Blood pressure is back to normal with the new medication but I have been asked to reduce and or eliminate salt from my diet. Will review in two weeks when the blood tests are back.
Torn rib cartilage. Still slow to heal and could be another few weeks. Will also review in another two weeks.
Muscle below the left knee is numb. Could be related to my spondilyitus especially L5 (spine) Review in two weeks.
Lump in breastbone area. When eating last week food lodged here and brought me to tears – twice. Doc thinks it is hiatus hernia. Review in two weeks.
Now for some rant time.
I drove 150 klms round trip to Caloundra to get the “X” key on the laptop fixed under the Toshiba warranty. They first told me it would take 5 days to get a replacement keyboard and then install it. Hmmm. Cannot see why they cannot order it over the phone. When I arrived I was told it could be two days before a technician inspected the laptop to determine the fault and to determine that it was covered under warranty and not self-inflicted damage. Only then will they order the part which could take 5 or more days as deliveries have been slowed by the recent floods. That means the repair, under warranty, could take two weeks or longer.
So much for service under warranty.
When will my visits to health practicioners end?
Tonight I found a tick on my side in a position difficult to see or reach. A visit to the hospital – a round trip of 97 klms – and two hours later I was home again after the tick was removed.
Tuesday 18th January.
I was woken at 3.30am by something soft and damp landing on my body. I thrashed around in bed trying to find a light switch in my sleepy state. I found a little green frog on my bed. How does a frog get into a closed motorhome with screens on all windows and doors?
Later in the day I explored many of the dirt tracks in the nearby National Park but each required a stop and a reverse out due to fallen trees or boggy sections big enough to swallow the Terios.
Traveston deserved an explore especially as it seems the weather may fine up. Traveston is a little village of around 8 or 9 houses, a community hall, a tennis court and a Country Fire Station. No stores, doctors, garages or any other commercial activity. Trains do stop at the station but not as part of a regular scheduled service. The underpass which can be used to access our road, is terribly chopped up due to the flood waters of the past few weeks.
I drove around and near many of the local mountains in the area. There are many ancient remains of volcanic plugs in this area. Names such as Mount Cooran, Mount Pinbarren, Mount Pomona, Mount Cooroora, Mount Timbeerwah, Mount Mooloo and there may be others I have yet to identify. At a guess I would say these volcanic plugs are similar to those further south nearer Brisbane which are collectively known as the Glasshouse Mountains. I cannot find collective names for those mountains in this area. I am guessing those in this area are older, as none are anywhere near as high as the Glasshouse Mountains. More weathering and erosion I suppose, so that would make them older. Perhaps a local geologist in the area may know more. I can research the Glasshouse Mountains and find lots of information including names of the individual plugs (mountains) however I cannot find any information on the local mountains except the location and height. The day was oppressively hot n humid with a hint, nay, threat, of a storm. I was not disappointed as thunder, lightning and rain arrived late in the afternoon. Lots of rain. The bridge will probably be underwater again.
Wednesday 19th January.
As is customary these days I am up before 6am often before 5am and get in a brisk half hour walk. On those mornings when it is not overcast, the sunshine shafts are filtered through the tall trees and a hint of eucalyptus haze hangs in the air. Most mornings I see some sort of wildlife, mostly birds including a pair of big fat geese. What were they doing walking down the road at that time of day?
Remembered to fast today and had my appointed blood letting and have an appointment with the doc two weeks hence to do a review of my health issues. The bridge was not underwater but it was up just below the bridge deck.
Did not do much today, although each morning I have been mowing a section of the property for a half hour or so. Today I just stayed around the house occupying my time and watched as the rain clouds built up and finally there was another downpour or two during the afternoon and evening. At times the rain was so heavy making it virtually impossible to hear the TV.
Thursday 20th January.
Today I drove to the Jabiru Bird Trail and Hide on Lake McDonald.
A bit disappointing really as the hide was more like a picnic shelter and I could not get anywhere near the waters edge due to the mud.
The bird path which follows the lake was cut off by a large section being underwater.
Worse, I did not see one bird. I also discovered there are several of these bird viewing areas scattered around the lake and each is designated a name such as Jabiru.
Friday 21st January
Today I visited the Noosa Centenary Botanical Gardens on the shore of Lake McDonald near Cooroy.
Wow! These gardens are quite extensive and a great deal of work has gone into their design and creation. The showpiece, known as the Amphitheatre, is a tiered Roman ummm errr amphitheatre.
Without the ruins. Although impressive, the gardens were not presented in their best manner due to all the rain, storms and wind experienced over the last month or so. Many branches were fallen and the staff were flat out just trying to clean up. The paths were in most cases still running with water seeping from the gardens higher up the hill but that did not detract from many people having a picnic, walking like me or bird watching.
It is a must visit again when the weather has been kinder for a bit longer.
A very large palm caught my eye. The following information is provided via the Cooloola Land Care Group Website.
“This species is sometimes called Burrawang Palm and is part of an ancient group of plants known as cycads. Cycads are plants found all over the world but the genus Macrozamia is native to Australia.
Macrozamia pauli-guilielmii is one of 14 species of these palm-like plants endemic to Australia and is distinguished by a spirally twisted rachis (column of plant from which fronds develop) through at leat two complete turns and grows to 1.1 metres. Produces 2-12 dark green fonds which arch outwards from the top of a mostly underground trunk..
Macrozamias do not bear flowers but reproduce by means of cones and each plant produces either a male or female cones. The female cone fruit, 1-4 per plant, resembles a pineapple in size and shape and the seeds are orange to scarlet in colour when ripe and will germinate readily to provide means of propagation. The pollen producing male cone is more cylindrical and is sometimes curved when old. The seeds, being rich in starch were an important food source for aborigines, after the toxic compounds were leached out, by a special and laborious process.
Grows in sandy soils in open eucalyptus and banksia forests and generally only found in the Wide Bay area, although may also be found in sandy soils on the Darling Downs. Listed as endangered under the Nature Conservation (Wildlife) Regulation 1994 and its amendments – Queensland.”
I also took a drive around the leafy suburb of Lake McDonald near Cooroy. It looks as though most properties are on five acres. Most of the houses are substantial and attractive.
Every third house is for sale!
Saturday 22nd January
Today I made a return trip to the Buderim Ginger factory at Yandina where the annual Ginger Flower and Food Festival is held.
Whooee! What a difference a festival makes. Cars were parked along both sides of the road and both sides of the median island in the middle of the road. The place was just chock a block with people, despite the irregular showers of rain. I had to line up for 15 minutes just to get a scone and a cup of coffee. The main reason I went was to see a couple of cooking demonstrations. Both sessions I attended were taught by a lady who was a contestant, with her sister, in the My Kitchen Rules Cooking competition on TV. She was entertaining and popular. All cooking demonstration sessions were totally booked out. Tomorrow I plan on making the wonton soup she demonstrated. I also saw a plant propagation by cuttings demonstration. For lunch I decided not to get in the long queue again but walked over the road to the Macadamia Nut factory where I only needed to queue behind one other couple to order lunch.
Sunday 23rd January
Today was a domestic duties sort of day including some more of my favourite activity – cutting the grass. Not! I have got into a kind of routine of cutting grass for about 30 minutes each day, in the morning, before it gets too hot. Even so I end up needing a shower when I am finished. In reality there is about two acres of grass to cut, much of it a collection of various grasses and weeds and at least half of it is on gently to steeply sloping ground. All this is done with a hand mower, not a ride on. Sometime during the morning I could hear the tinkle of water and looked outside to see the rain. Nope! Still sunny out there. On investigation I found the hand bidet in the bathroom had sprung a pinhole leak and was spraying water all over the walls, floor and a small table with old magazines on it. Yikes! After turning off the water and mopping up with a couple of super sponges I carry in WWWGO I tried to repair the flexi hose. Hmmm. I need parts. As expected the parts cannot be purchased so a replacement flexi hose was purchased from Bunnings in Noosa and within minutes of arriving home it was fixed. While out I also purchased the makings for wonton soup according to the recipe I received at the cooking demo yesterday.
Hang about. The recipe calls for three litres of stock plus so many vegetables I could feed a rugby league team, including reserves. These are restaurant quantities so I cut everything down by two thirds. That’s better but even so I ended up with a filling wonton soup for dinner, two containers frozen for the future and tomorrow nights dinner as well.