|Move over Brett Whitely - this is by Bliss, aged 5. In case you didn't get it, the caption reads, "ADVENTURE IS OUT THERE."|
I am rather in limbo at present. I was supposed to have flown to India today, but one of the little girls was sick and had to go to hospital, so I have given up on that idea for the time being. Instead I feel as if I have been transported to an alien planet, a semi -rural one - quite classy if you don’t mind, where well -dressed little girls ride ponies on Saturdays and responsible Gortex -clad parents take their children for hikes and bike rides.
I also feel as if I have been transported back about 30 years because I am doing school pickups, making lunches, eating macaroni and cheese, going to Sizzlers and the occasional netball match – well more like wetball match since the rain has barely let up, but you’ll be pleased to know that I haven't signed up for tuck –shop duty yet, though I could turn into a Soccer Grandma at any moment.
|Sign at the entrance to the Netball Courts|
Between the showers the fruit trees are starting to bloom, the citrus trees are heavy with fruit and a posse of gaudy parrots makes itself at home on the front verandah. If it thinks no one is looking, a large sleek bandicoot snaffles up any crumbs the birds may have missed. When we first moved to Australia, friends and relatives used to ask if kangaroos hopped around on the main street. They didn’t then, but here they hop around the backyard. The parrots are different, the bandicoots are different - we have smaller scruffier looking ones, and the kangaroos are much bigger.The first of the famous wildflowers are out too and though it’s still pretty cold it’s also a lot greener than it usually is.
|That should read WETBALL -play didn't stop because of the rain|
One thing never fails to surprise me when I come to Perth. It's that despite the glittering skyscrapers and massive urban development there is always the sense that civilisation clings only tenuously to this part of the world: that the wild frontier of vast stretches of desert and scrub lurking over the horizon is just waiting to take it back.
It’s not quite as upbeat this time as it was while the mining boom was in full swing. The population is more subdued, there are more houses for sale and my daughter’s little girls are not the only ones to have moved from a private to a state school. The pace of life seems to have slowed a little too. That can’t be all bad.