Saturday, July 30, 2011

Maranoa River a magnet to the people of Mitchell

Weekends in Mitchell see many people gather along the banks of the river -- the majestic Maranoa. It's like a magnet, this river, as it loops and meanders around the small outback town.

Fishing, walking, photography, sharing a barbecue lunch by a campfire -- all these and more provide relaxation, exercise and stimulation for all age groups from the very young to the elderly.

Yesterday, as I paused on the foot bridge, a flock of about 50 white cockatoos flew overhead, screeching, sulphur-crests raised in anticipation of the evening feast of grain provided by Rob and Brian at the Major Mitchell Caravan Park.

My gaze moved to the riverbank where Snow White the egret stood, still like a statue. Further down, on the naked branch of a river red gum, perched a white-necked heron, surveying the river. Her dark eyes locked onto mine, then she took wing, effortlessly lifting over the shining water; mirrored, deep with reflections.

It was like I was flying too.

As I breathed in the sharp smell of eucalyptus and the dusky aroma of the river, my eyes rested on the smooth, silver-lit water.

Here it was possible to drift back in time, to reflect about the origins of life on earth.

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