621. Sunday 26th January (Australia Day) 2020. An unexpected road trip…

Monday 20th January 2020.

Went to the movies at Star Casino at Broadbeach. I went with Linda and Ngaire and we saw Judy. It is the story of the final months in the life of Judy Garland. It was very emotional.

The Star Casino! Wow! I became a member when it was Jupiters Casino way back in 2014 or 2015. I needed to update my card but that only took 5 minutes and I have all the benefits of a base member. Way back when we first joined we went with a friend who is a Gold Class member and she took us to exclusive places including a free buffet. Naturally you are expected to gamble. I suppose I am like the majority of members who go there for the cheap or free stuff the casino offers.

Lynda took a small back cushion for me to use. She was very insistent. Good thing she was too. I needed that cushion.

Friday 24th January

Today the colour of the water in Biggera Creek has changed from muddy brown to mild black tea. The reason for the massive water coming down the creek at low tide last Saturday was the release of water at Biggera Dam. The Biggera Creek Dam, or formally the Biggera Creek Flood Mitigation Dam, is a dam established for flood mitigation purposes over the Biggera Creek, located in the suburb of Arundel. It is operated by the Gold Coast City Council. The dam has a capacity of 3,700 megalitres and the height of the dam wall is 12.5 meters. Because its sole purpose is flood mitigation, the retention basin behind the dam is almost always empty of water. At times like this with exceptionally heavy rainfall, the dam is opened as the tide is going out. The idea is to avoid flooding rather than collect a domestic water supply.

Saturday 25th January

As I do every morning at around 5 or 6am, I go to The Broadwater for a walk. 250120 broadwaterIt seemed there was a light mist or haze of some sort. 250120 broadwater1The water is returning to its normal clarity and cleanliness after the heavy rain this time last week.250120 broadwater2 It’s still not pristine but is looking good.250120 broadwater3

As I watched a group of 17 Stand Up Paddleboarders paddled past. They were followed by a couple of pods of dolphins rounding up a school of fish just a few metres off the beach. I was standing with three guys who I know and who were about to go for coffee. While watching a group of ladies stopped to ask what we were looking at.


I chatted with the ladies and found the men had already left for coffee.

It is nice to be able to begin to recognise and know people on my morning walks.

Sunday 26th January AUSTRALIA DAY.

Last night I received a phone call from my grandson Anakin. Long story short, he is stranded on a farm outside a town called Bungunya about a 6 hour drive from the Gold Coast. The next nearest town is Goondiwindi a four hour drive away. It seems he has been abandoned by his drilling contractor employer. He has to find his own way to town and the next bus service from Goondiwindi (pronounced Gun Da Windy) is Monday. Well if you are gunna be stranded for a couple of days there are worse places than Gunda. I like the town.

After a troubled sleep I was on my way to Goondiwindi at 4.30 am. By the time I reached Cunninghams Gap, the steep and winding pass over the Great Dividing Range, it was full daylight but low cloud cover meant it was not only dark but constant moisture, not rain, meant I needed the wipers turned on. I caught a few glimpse of cliff faces but due to the switchbacks and low speed and poor visibility I needed to really concentrate on driving. The few glimpses I saw reminded me there would be some good photo opportunities here. Then once over the pass I was heading to Warwick and a much needed stop for coffee, toilet and walk to ease the back pain. Naturally I saw lots of photo opportunities but I was on a mission of mercy and needed to stay focused.

By now the sun was up, temperature was climbing to mid 30’s and it was apparent there had been lots of rain over the last 24/48 hours. I passed through towns which screamed photo opportunities. That is until I reached Yelarbon and making good time.260120 yellarbon The Silo Art just had to be photographed. In fact the small town is worth a day of photographing. https://www.goondiwindiargus.com.au/story/6247657/yelarbon-on-silo-art-trail/

260120 yellarbon1260120 yellarbon2260120 yellarbon3260120 yellarbon4About this time Anakin called me and asked if I would bring his friend back to the Gold Coast. WTF! The original plan was to bring Anakin home with me for a few days until we could organise a flight. It seems his friend was also abandoned by the same employer except the friend had been injured on the job and taken to hospital with suspected broken ribs. I asked that they have the friends mother call me first. She did. I agreed to bring him back but only if I could get a copy of hospital discharge papers and details of any medication and or treatment he may need.

On arrival I found the friend in lots of pain but no serious injury, no broken ribs but bad bruising including bruised ribs. Another long story. The hospital would release him to me but by now his mother had organised air flights out of Brisbane this afternoon. This meant I was on a timetable to get them there on time. I was a bit annoyed the booking was made without consultation with me. That was a 5 hour drive including stopping for toilet breaks and fuel and food stops. The quickest route was via Toowoomba  and I dreaded the long slow drive through the main street. However just out of Toowoomba I found a new Tollway which detours the town saving us about 20 minutes. It avoids 18 sets of lights and was only opened in September last year. I have no idea how much the toll cost but by now all I wanted was to stop but still had to deliver the boys. By now my back was sending messages to stop and rest and walk around for awhile.

We arrived at the airport in plenty of time then I had another hour to drive home. By the time I arrived and tried to get out of the car my back was in spasm including the muscles in the thigh. I had trouble standing let alone walking.

Bugger it. If I am ever called upon to be a guardian angel again I am going to take time for my own needs.



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