Sunday 5th April – Bribie Island
Coronavirus Lockdown Day 14
907 cases: A 78-year-old man dies in Prince Charles Hospital in Brisbane, becoming the fifth Queensland coronavirus victim. The man, like many of the other victims, recently returned from a cruise. Nine new cases are recorded in the state.
Bronwen—against common sense and all government and medical advice—went and saw her parents this morning. She also took my car to do it, leaving me stuck at home, and then stayed there for several hours, even though she knew I wanted to drive to Bribie Island today.
After weeks of dutifully staying inside all the time (apart from essential shopping and exercise) while everyone else ignored all the recommendations and did whatever they wanted, and then being happy when the government finally made some enforceable rules to force everyone to follow the recommendations, I’ve decided now that the government has changed their fairly clear “Home Confinement” rules (where you had to stay inside and only go out for a few simple, easy-to-understand reasons) to their new “Home Confinement, Movement and Gathering Direction” rules which allow people to go pretty much anywhere and do pretty much anything, so long as they claim they’re going to visit someone, I’m going to abide by the letter of the law—but otherwise do my own thing.
So, seeing as the law says I can leave my principal place of residence to the extent reasonably necessary to accomplish physical exercise, I’ve decided that today I need to walk on a beach. Also, I’ve decided that—as a photographer—I need to photograph Bronwen on a beach in the sunset, which is work that is of a nature that cannot reasonably be performed from my principal place of residence. Thus, armed with the full backing of the law, Bronwen (once she finally got home with the car) and I drove to Bribie Island, that being the only beach I’m aware of in the area that has a sunset. Plus, Wallace the Drone was getting restless and wanted to go out.
Bribie Island is a lot further than it seems on a map. It took an hour and a half to get there, which is pretty much the same as it’d take to get to some of the further-away beaches down at the Gold Coast. On the bright side, there was almost no traffic and I’d heard that police wouldn’t be doing speed checks, so the drive was as fast as it could reasonably be. Having finally arrived at Woorim, still quite alive (it turns out every K over is not a killer—yet more government lies), we parked and had a look at what I think is called “Main Beach”. It was quite boring and unimpressive. Basically, just a beach. There were a few people moving about, most dutifully not sitting down as that would be illegal though there were a few here and there ignoring the law and living their lives in chaos, sitting on the beach like they just don’t care.
After deciding that Main Beach is not very exciting, we drove to the northern-most end of Woorim—a full two minutes’ drive—and checked out what appears to be called “Woorim Beach”. This was basically exactly the same as Main Beach, except a bit further north. It also contained a spattering of good people, going about their healthy exercise, and the occasional anarchist clearly not exercising.
The road onto the beach, which presumably cool people can use to 4WD their way to the northern end of the island—which the news told me had been controversially not closed—was very much closed.
After realising that this beach is also not very exciting, we jumped back in the car and drove to the southern-most end of Woorim—to a beach that Google Maps calls “Bribie Island Dog Beach”, but which I think may actually be called “Woody Bay”. This beach had a bit of a walk to it—and a lot of signs warning us that our valuables would be stolen if we left them in the car. Once again, the beach had a spattering of people on it, most of them doing their civic duty and exercising like the good little citizens they are.
Bronwen and I walked south along the beach until we came to one of the famous driftwood huts, which of course Bronwen had to climb, despite it being clearly unsafe to do so. To everyone’s surprise, she didn’t break anything, and some of the photos turned out quite nicely.
After not breaking anything at the driftwood hut we rushed back to the car because it was starting to get late—and the whole point of coming to Bribie Island in the first place was to photograph the sunset, which had to be done from “Red Beach”—on the other side of the island!
We drove across the island, getting to Red Beach just as the sun began to set—just in time to take the photos we’d come to get.
After photographing Bronwen on the beach in the sunset, as required, we stopped off at a pond they call “Buckleys Hole Conservation Park”, but it was really too dark to see anything much. In retrospect, had Bronwen not taken the car for so long this morning we could have left earlier and then we would have had time to look at this before going to the sunset, and the sunset wouldn’t have been so rushed, and it would have been better.
Still, overall, the trip was a success and the lesson learnt is that Bribie Island is actually not very interesting, but does have nice sunsets.