Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Appreciation (30) … Water days

Appreciation (30) … Water days
Torrey Orton
Nov. 2, 2010

A different Australian nature, a wet one. We did waterfalls two days ago, as many as we could get into a 6 hour driving window – Lal Lal, Sailors and Trentham – spurred by a 3 inch rainfall in our backyard and a BOM-enhanced confidence that the outer plains and hills got up to 5 inches. The Lal Lal in the link and that below are seriously different. My pic is 311010 a day after the big drop. Trentham was like this by higher by 10 metres and ½ again the water volume. Lal Lal swished, Trentham thundered, Sailors burbled from two distinct rivulets coming over the same cliff edge. Interestingly to me, the pic does not capture how muddy the water actually was, as many in the link do not either. Probably trashy photog work by me. I am not alone. Turn your screen on end for the next minute.
The drive, totalling 300ks, was pocked for me by incessant glimpses to one side of the road and the other looking for water. It took a while to realise what was happening. I needed to see water in the fields and woods, knowing that it must be there and that it could be ten years again before I would see it (and, I now realise while writing, that ten years may not be there for me to do so). I yearned for it – the sight of water on land. I don't know that I've viscerally yearned before, but the word is right though I've never spoken or written it. I must have learned it in others' speech and writing.

Ten years of drought has meant very little water on land. What appeared sank so quickly out of sight it often did not even bring stream beds back to a watery life even for a few days. We've walked a dozen stream/river beds of sand and rock, looked for a slight run-off in dry creeks. I've often thought I was fully habituated to the great Australian dry and flat. Yesterday tells me I'm not I've just been hankering slyly for the rolling and the wet. My perception of being in the rolling wet yesterday was enhanced measurably by the amount of introduced greens along the way – exotic trees and food crops which a spring in northern hemisphere always produces. Trentham / Daylesford/Lal Lal are rolling and presently wet.

This yearning comes in company with my many wonders about things past and struggles at the moment about how much of the future to devote to them – to focussing them, refining them, rediscovering them. My water worries must be an edge of this need arising from my long pleasure in places, especially the natural ones or the nature in places not so natural like the trees of Paris or Beijing. There is something unfinished – missed? – there in my old places. Next year US and Europe – the first looking back seeking to tie off something(s)? … the second a back (to France) as a step towards futures spent there in part.

Or perhaps my flow is deeper than that.

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