We have lived at Big Bluff now for almost ten months, and first visited over one year ago. We have completed a cycle of seasons coming and going.
I know I am not the only person to live in a climate with four seasons, but to actually live it and farm it for the first time is quite amazing to me. There is something to be said for really living somewhere else, not just touching the surface and ticking boxes on a travel wish list.
If you only ever go to Europe in winter (our summer holidays) do you ever appreciate the spring beauty or the summer heat? Do you always picture Europe in your mind as cold and grey? Of course, the good thing about going somewhere touristy in winter is less tourists - TIME just a couple of months ago had an article about how tourists are killing Europe…and yet with the anti-government riots in Paris this month, that is killing the tourist trade that is so vital to their economy…
But by living in a climate of four seasons this year, we were excited by the blustery fall of leaves as summer became autumn and we appreciated the day-by-day warming of the weather and the soil as winter lost it’s grip. In Queensland, that is a mere blip of a gentle temperature change, and the odd neighbourhood tree but mostly everything is still all green…
So, here at Big Bluff, spring got underway with some beautiful rain that we had been needing and hoping for, and the tree outside our bedroom window went from bare branches to an explosion of green in a couple of short weeks.
I planted tulip bulbs in July, not really expecting anything, but online browsing one night I couldn’t resist. And lo and behold they flowered! Who knew it’s actually possible to grow these beautiful things! I actually had no idea how they grew - they poke a nub out of the ground, then leaves appear, then the beginnings of the flower. Then the flower grows taller. Very different to other flowers where the flower spike grows up, then the flower bud forms and blooms. They were gone all too soon, but still worth the effort in my opinion.
Now spring has turned to summer, and I have to stop saying to people “the creek doesn’t run all year but it runs in summer”. Well it’s summer already, and whilst we have plenty of lovely natural spring-fed waterholes dotted along the creek, it’s not running along it’s whole length like it did last year.
Looking back at the pictures we took here last summer, we haven’t got the green or the growth we had this time last year. But every season is different and we will take it in our stride, but not take it to heart.
The cattle have their glossy summer sheen back, the calves are at foot and growing before our eyes, and we have had many friends, family and airbnb guests come to share our little valley with us.
All in all, the glass is half full, not half empty. We’re busy doing and busy living, and I am grateful for all that.