I am very partial to taking the side road.  My family and friends will all testify to this – with varying degrees of exasperation :-)  Why stay on the highway when we can go adventuring, I say!  And in the beautiful Bega Valley, there is so much adventuring to do.  This visit, we bumped along to the Mumbulla falls.  Oh my, the road was dreadful and windy and steep and potholey.  The forest was impenetrable.  We climbed up one side of the mountain and down the other.  The family rolled their eyes and shook their heads – another one of Lily’s dirt track detours!

But when we arrived – as is most often the case – they changed their tunes.  The air was heavy with the rich scent of the forest.  Frogs croaked, birds sang, and unseen water burbled.  The girl and her stick – with her father not too far behind – declared that the river must be followed.  Mum and I chose the sweetly built wooden walkway.

The falls themselves were part of a series of rock pools – one of them, so very deep, that the water was black and young local folk were leaping from the rocky cliff, several metres above, and plunging into its icy depths.  There was even a naturally formed rocky waterslide that the slightly less adventurous catapulted along.  Julian and Abby declared it was definitely worth a return to on a hot, summers day – Julian, desperate to leap off those rocks; Abby, content to soak in the smaller pools that are constantly refreshed with sparkling water from above.

Me – I am definitely not the rock leaping kind – I made friends with a local skink.  He was a charming fellow, not at all shy, and let me take as many snaps as I wanted whilst he basked in the sun and caught insects.  Mum – I don’t think she’ll be leaping off the rocks either.  But she loved exploring another part of her new homeland.

And all because I said “Turn here! Let’s see where it goes!”



postcards from the sea – where we follow the river and meet bill the lizard