Saying g’day might be easier…

One of the delights of living in north Queensland is the laid back connections between people. It would feel wrong not to say g’day to my fellow walkers in the mornings and afternoons. The butcher leans on the counter and discusses the economy (and the lack of tourists) and I suspect he has a better grasp than many of our politicians.  The garbo waves hello, the bus driver will drop you off where ever you request. People look you in the face and smile.

All that open friendliness does mean that the exceptions stand out. At one end of our beach the houses nestle on the sand, palm trees shading their front porches, and passer-bys respect the inhabitants’ right to privacy even while they admire (and possibly envy) their position.

At the other end is a house that’s turned into a fortress. Its new owners installed electronic gates that look capable of withstanding a battering ram worthy of the orcs and maurauding hoards of Mordor.  Next came security cameras, signs warning people not to sit on their rock wall, signs warning of dogs, and signs warning of imminent prosecution if you disobeyed any of the above edicts. Not content with that they’ve now  increased the size of the rock wall that separates their property from the beach. If the unwary don’t obey the signs and perch on the rocks they’ll find themselves being told to move on as the police have been called.

It always makes me a little sad that this family moved to a house front and centre on a beach and then proceeded to lock themselves away, block out the world. Their view is diminished, and not just the view of the gorgeous Coral Sea. Their view of their community is surely as shuttered as the house and that’s sad because there’s so much joy to be had from simple contact with others in an uncomplicated way.

Good walls don’t necessarily make good neighbours…

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9 thoughts on “Saying g’day might be easier…

  1. The kids from Xavier College use the back way into our flats as a shortcut, also a place to hide from the teachers, smole, and have a drink. NOT always tobacco or soft drinks either! 🙁

  2. I use to have a hard time not laughing out loud, Sandy, when I was walking around the streets near the hotel in Sydney. So many of the men had that ‘oh no, is she trying to pick me up?’ look on their face…

    Sorry to hear you’re having trouble with local brats behaving badly… You’re tucked away in such a quiet corner it must be very frustrating…

    And happy Easter to you and B and C 🙂

  3. Hello, ladies,
    That’s one of the things I miss from the North. The acknowledgement when you walk past (damn nearly got that past wrong!) another person that you actually exist. Down here, if you look a person in the eyes and nod at them, they’re immediately on the defensive and you can see them thinking ‘what do they want?’

    I’m afraid I have to admit that I can relate to the actions of your hide-away neighbours. If they’ve come from a city environment, it’s probably second nature to fortress themselves. We’re even thinking of putting in an electronic gate down our lane way. The top neighbours receive quite a bit of harassment and littering from local kids. Ah, if we could only all play together nicely…

  4. Suzanne, we knew the last people who owned it – at least to say hello to – but the new family are very protective of their privacy. It’s such a contrast to all the other houses along the beach…

  5. I’ve always wondered who lived in there. We climbed the rocks for a better view. lol… It’s like ann oasis in there, but so locked away. Do you know who they are Helene?

    They sound like my neighbours. Locked away all the time, hiding behind an overgrowth of folliage. lol.

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