The end of the year has been a mix of muggy, high temperatures, fierce storms and heavy rain. Christmas was no different. The day started off with a peaceful walk and a swim in a nearby creek and ended with me and my Dad sitting on their front balcony in the dark listening to the rain and enjoying the cool breeze. I took many walks during the time at my parents’ house, being in the country is so refreshing for me and seeing all the different wildlife makes me happy even if I couldn’t capture them all with my camera. A trip to the beach was on the cards for boxing day regardless of whether it was raining or not, the thinking was that if we’re going to get wet we may as well go for a swim in the surf.
…and no, there wasn’t any alcohol involved just mother nature doing the wild thing and creating havoc for us humans, again.
Australia Day was Saturday, January 26 and it was a wet day, but at least there were moments when you could venture outside to walk the dog or do a bit of shopping. Yesterday it rained, and it rained and it rained, our Premier appeared on the news telling us to brace for a wild night of wind and rain, flooding in Brisbane and further destruction in towns like Gympie and Bundaberg. For many, it was reminiscent of the 2011 floods which caused devastation in places like Toowoomba, Grantham, Brisbane and Ipswich to name a few.The Gold Coast got off reasonably lightly then, the rain fell yet the flooding was minor, not so this time.
Live coverage of the flooding can be found on the ABC website: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-01-28/qld-flooding-alert-moves-south/4486666
On the Gold Coast, high rise buildings are creating major wind tunnels making it difficult for locals and tourists in Surfers Paradise to get around. In our local area trees have fallen and roads are flooded, we’re being asked to stay off the road and flights from the Gold Coast have been cancelled or redirected. I usually spend my Sundays at a local animal welfare league but after a couple of hours of cleaning, cuddles and toilet walks there was little I could do, the rain was just too heavy and the dogs were better off warm and dry in their beds.
My husband and I spent the afternoon indoors watching DVDs, Maxi and Bundy were also not inclined to be outdoors, they followed our every move and if there was a chance to go for a ride in the car, Bundy could be found ready to go at the front door. We live near the bush, a huge Eucalyptus tree sits right on our fence line and there are several more within a hundred metres of our house, to hear the wind roar through those trees is frightening. The wind blew all night, speeds of 140km/hour were mentioned on the news but I have no idea how fast it was moving near our place, we kept the windows of our bedroom open in the hope that if one of those trees were to come down we would be able to hear it. As it was, the neighbour’s bamboo was the only thing we had to worry about, it had been uprooted by the wind and now lies across our fence and on our roof. Damage appears to be minimal, water is not coming through our ceiling and no windows have been broken, it is hard to know anything more until the weather eases and the bamboo can be removed. With so much worse being experienced in other areas of Queensland, I can’t complain, these things happen and we’re still safe and dry. My heart goes out to the people who have lost their homes and for the few who have lost their lives as a result of this wild weather.
Summer is here with a vengance, it has been a few years since we had consistently hot weather and predictions over the weekend were for a week of temperatures in the high thirties (celsius). Yesterday was hot, air conditioned offices were a blessing and the storm that hit last night a huge relief. We had put up some of the Christmas fairy lights on Sunday afternoon, solar powered of course, and as the rain poured down, I noticed that water pooling on the pavers allowed for a colourful reflection of lights that we stuck in the garden. Tonight there is no such relief, today reached 39 degrees and overnight we’ll only see the temperature drop to about 24 degrees and there is no rain predicted so no more funky, colourful reflections.
In between showers (of rain) this evening I managed to track this little guy down, a tiny green frog with a huge voice. It was difficult for me to get a completely focused and decent shot with a torch tucked under my arm, towel over my head and 1 hand for the camera but you can still see how cute he is 🙂
It is raining, heavy, constant rain that leaves you wondering if it will ever stop. At the moment there is a choir of frogs in the yard, they are almost louder than the rain falling on the tin roof of our outdoor area and at times it can be deafening.
With two days of solid rain and 6 or 7 more days of wet weather predicted it leaves me feeling as though we’ve been here before, only 12 months ago 75% of Queensland was under water including suburbs of our capital city, Brisbane. Already roads are flooded and with predictions of another 200mm to fall it must be quite frightening for the people who lost loved ones and homes in the floods of 2011. There are still those idiots risking their lives and the lives of others by attempting to drive through flood waters, already 3 people have had to be rescued from their car despite warning signs erected all over the state.
Photos taken during the last 24 hours of rain: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/photogallery/queensland/severe-weather-hits-southeast-queensland-20120124-1qf10.html
With Australia Day celebrations scheduled for Thursday it is unlikely to be the usual day at the beach, playing cricket and enjoying a barbeque. Undercover barbeques prove extremely popular at this time and at least you don’t have to worry too much about flies or sunburn. Think I’ll stay home, maybe catch up with friends for a coffee and take the dogs for a walk between showers of rain, it will be nice to not have to go to work regardless of what the weather is like 🙂
It wasn’t too long ago that Queensland was in severe drought with the highest level of water restrictions imposed across the state, now its nothing but rain and flooding with major devastation caused by a flash flood at Toowoomba yesterday. The lives of many could be lost and that includes pets and wildlife.
My heart goes out to the families on the receiving end of such an event as well as to those experiencing flooding in towns like Gympie, St George, Emerald and more, some of them have seen this before and had only just rebuilt their homes. The Flood Appeal has raised over $30million in pledges, hopefully there is more we can give so the affected areas can rebuild their lives once the water has receded.
It really isn’t supposed to rain this much during summer, spectacular lightning and thunder storms yes, but torrential, consistent rain no. During breaks in the bad weather I step outside, dogs in tow and survey the surroundings to see whether there is more rain coming and to savor the fresh air and watch local wildlife (spiders, birds, dragonflies and occasionally frogs) go about their business.
Today I stepped with my iphone and a new retro camera app that I was wanting to test on some poor unsuspecting subject, usually the subject is my husband or one of our dogs but a magnolia had blossomed in our garden and a flower, now in the last stages of blooming seemed like the obvious choice. The retro camera app has 5 different ‘cameras’ to choose from: The Barbl, Little Orange Box, xolaroid 2000, pinhole camera and FudgeCan and with each camera there is an option to shoot in colour or black and white. By selecting a subject that would not move or complain, it was easy for me to try all the different camera formats in both colour and black and white and compare the after effects. The Barbl and FudgeCan shots were interesting and among my favourites however the photos I liked most of all were those taken by the Little Orange Box, the contrast and colour appealed to me and the texture didn’t seem to be too heavily applied.