Paper beach

Hi All

I want to share some pictures that we took when we were walking the dogs over on Paper Beach the day after mum died. We were still in shock and coming to terms with her death and decided to take some photos of this beautiful area. The day before, when we had been ignorant of mums eminent demise, was a magnificent day and we forgot to take the camera to take photos for you. The next day was as grey as we were feeling so I guess it is fitting that these photographs reflect the state of our hearts as we walked and talked our way around our grief. I stopped off at an acquaintances house where he has the most interesting series of home-made artistic sculptures made of all sorts of old metal that he has collected from various places. We met Roger when Nat brought him to Serendipity Farm for a visit to see our plant collection. Roger worked with Nat at a local nursery before she got a job lecturing at the Polytechnic that we attend. Roger is a most interesting man but wasn’t home on the day that we took these photos and so we had to make do with taking photos from the front of the house. Every square inch of his garden is covered in special things. Interspersed and tumbled through are his amazing sculptures. He has some of the most delicious specimens of plant material that I have seen and many unusual and interesting succulents. The back of his house has much more than you can see in these photos but I would never enter someone else’s property while they were not there even for your interests sake constant readers

This is the 5th post in a series of posts that I am attempting to create before I head out in 2 days’ time to head back to Western Australia for the first time since we moved here in January 2007. Like my son said, “I wish that your visit was under happier circumstances”, so do I Stewart…so do I. We are all coming to terms with mum’s death and dealing with our grief in our own ways. If Steve has posted this post on the right day, it will be the Saturday after mum’s funeral and we will have said our goodbyes to her mortal remains. I want to buy a beautiful claret ash and plant it on Serendipity Farm in mum’s honour. She loved her claret ash that she had at her house before she moved to her small unit. She had to leave it behind when she moved and it was subsequently cut down and removed from the property by developers who put 2 houses on the block. Mum watched and documented this entire process, sending us photos of the removal of her precious garden and the subsequent building of the new houses. I think it was her way of working through leaving where she had lived for over 20 years. I know that Ash trees are one of the hardiest trees about. There are several of them on the property and they are attempting to repopulate the teatree area much like Yin and his need to make Serendipity Farm a poultry farm. A lovely claret ash would be able to survive the harsh times and lap up the luxury of 9 months of constant water and for you mum, I don’t even care that it won’t give us anything but aesthetic pleasure.


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Who knows what I am doing today. I have Nige to warm me and the members of the Potato Peel society on Guernsey to amuse me. I plan on doing a lot of walking around our old haunts. When Steve came out to Australia he moved down to Albany along with my children and I and we formed a weird conglomerate of people all getting to know each other. My son Stewart had just moved back from 2 years living with his dad and we spent a while cautiously moving around each other to work out our new boundaries. We lived in Albany for 8 years and spent a lot of time at the beaches, walking around and generally making it home. We loved living there, but given the opportunity to live rent free and do some studies to give us a better chance to get a job doing something that we actually wanted to do was too good to give up and we moved here. I never saw mum living anywhere apart from the house opposite the school in Denmark where I moved in with her for a brief period of time with my girls who went to the same school that I attended when I was a child until Steve got out here, to save up money for my bond. She moved into her little unit after we moved here and I know that it would have gutted her to leave her lovely big trees behind. I will see her little unit when I go back. I will wander around the place that I was born. I will spend some time drinking a top notch bottle of spirits with my brother and will give him comfort in his abject pain. Together we will all move on from the loss of mum and she would be so very happy that we are all talking again after some past problems. Mum, you did it, you got us all back together and no doubt wherever you are you will be smiling about that.

I will be taking copious photos to share with you all when I get back. I want to show you where I was born, where I lived, the sea and the rivers everything that you might not have seen before in Western Australia including some of the amazing flora and fauna should it wander across the road or stumble into my sister’s garden while I am staying there. I hope that I get back tired but cleared out and ready to start a new phase of my/our lives here on Serendipity Farm, working with Steve to get this place where we want it to be and using the knowledge that we are about to gain from our landscape design course to give it our best shot to make this place something special.


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