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Annie Hill

Annie Hill
Photo credit: Alvah Simon

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Books By Annie Hill

  • Brazil and Beyond
  • Voyaging on a Small Income

About Me

05 January, 2020

Poor Australia

I was about to write a nice, cheerful blog and wish everyone a Happy New Year, but I have had to switch on the lights, 4 hours before sunset.  The sky is a dirty orange; all the white boats in the yard are also orange, as are the sides of my shed, the light filtering in between the slats of wood.

Australia is going up in flames and, over 1,000 nautical miles away, the smoke from these fires has made the afternoon as dark as sundown in my home, and smeared a vile orange light over everything.  It is how one imagines the Apocalypse would start.  All I can think about is the 500,000 innocent, beautiful, delightful animals that have died; the ancients forest that have been torched.  I have been in Australia. I think of those sweet little wallabies that hopped up shyly and tapped me on the leg, hoping for food; of the platypus splashing in the creek; of the spiny echidna bumbling along in his own little world; of the budgies flocking around a billabong; of the 'silly' galahs sitting on the water pump blades, having to move each time they went below the horizontal; of the kangaroos bounding with such speed and grace across the flat land; of the most beautiful wrens in the world, pecking in the dirt around my feet.  I remember the grace of the ghost gums, the weirdness of the baobab trees, the wonderful bunya bunya pines.  How will the Australian people continue with so many of these gone?  How will Australia continue?

Of course, it is terrible for the people, those who have lost their family and friends, their homes and their livelihoods.  But this has happened through the folly and selfishness of the human race.  There is barely a person in the consumer world who isn't complicit in this destruction.  But we can try and stop it getting worse.  Anyone who reads this blog must have some love for nature.  Imagine, sitting here in the middle of what should be a bright and breezy day, with the sky a lurid orange from fires hundreds and hundreds of miles away and the lights on.  I can tell you: it is overwhelming.  Like it or not, it's time to completely change the trajectory of our society and put the planet first.  As they say: it's the only one we've got.  We all have to stand up and both act in our own lives and vote for the politicians who think beyond the next election.  It may not be too late.  But Australia tells us that we haven't much time left.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Annie I just read your posts re: the australian fires, from our perspective as those in Sydney who have seen the results while being spared the flames its been truly horrible & we have a Prime Minister of truly immense ineptitude and arrogance along with the rest of his incompetent government . However if their has to be a wake up call for all of us to face the truth about not just climate change but also how we continue to be hoodwinked into being gross consumers of utter rubbish to make the 1% richer then this has been it! And yes the plight of our unique flora & fauna is a national disgrace. You can't stop fires in Australia, a lot of plants especially its a very complicated ecology mix here. By the way love the new hatch & love the new boat I find the conceptualisation behind this design especially exciting. Cheers Mark

Annie Hill said...

No, you can't stop fires and, unfortunately, the advent of homo (so-called) sapiens into the "Lucky Country" hasn't helped. The climate catastrophe, of course, has only made them more frequent.

It seems that there are very few politicians willing to step up and try to ameliorate the continuing worsening of natural conditions, both on land and in the ocean, but it has to be said that the Aussie lot are some of the worst. At least the USA has a completely broken democratic system, with no hint of proportional representation, but the poor Aussies don't even have that comfort. Fingers crossed that the old school will be booted out and replaced by some people who care.

I'm glad you are enjoying my blog and ideas: we need to escape from the horrors that seem overwhelming on occasion, and a cute little boat seems especially appealing at the moment. I can't wait to launch!