Friday, March 23, 2018

Cyclone Marcus 17th March 2018

Last Saturday a cyclone hit Darwin, it formed on Friday a category 1 (the least strong). One of the girls at work described it as kite flying weather, and we laughed about customers who were rushing in to buy torches, gas bottles, tarps...

BUT on Saturday it strengthened to a category 2. I started the morning sitting on the verandah watching the rain and trees buffetting in the wind, feeling grumpy about missing out on my morning walk. At 10.30 the power went out, and by 11 I thought I'd better go inside as the wind cranked up and branches snapped off trees and palms in our yard blew over.

The track of the cyclone passed right over Darwin, winds of 130km were recorded the strongest for 30 years. The worst of the storm was for about an hour in the middle of the day. It quickly calmed down, and when I ventured out to the end of the street mid afternoon, I was shocked to see so many trees down in every direction.



I feel stupid that we were so unprepared - I used to have a cyclone kit but the tinned food and bottled water got too old, I threw it out and never replaced it. We had cheese sandwiches for dinner that night!

We were lucky that our power came back on the next morning, some suburbs were without power for 5 days. We were lucky that I had a little radio so we could listen to the news updates, and that we had torches batteries and candles kicking around the house. We were lucky that I'm a bad housewife!!! The fridge needed defrosting and had a big lump of ice up the back that kept the milk cool.



These photos are of the aftermath of the cyclone. My walk to work takes me past two parks, I'm not much of a photographer but I wanted a record of these fallen giants. I know that in a few months the memory will fade, I'll forget how extreme and frightening the storm was. Hopefully these photos will remind me of how powerful the cyclone was and to take the next one seriously.


Monday, February 12, 2018

Changing priorities

The last few months it feels like I've taken off a worn out, much loved, old coat, and now I'm wondering what to put on instead.

Art has been the meaning of life for me since I was a teenager, the thing that got me excited and inspired, the way I made sense of the world. I worked part time and neglected housework, etc, so that I had time to make art. But over the last year that has changed.

Maybe it's to do with getting older - I'm 53 - maybe it's because I strained my back a couple of times last year which put me out of action for a week each time, and moving gingerly ever since. But suddenly my physical health is a priority rather than something I take for granted. So walking at the beach and going to yoga come before making art. I have a strong feeling that I want to get outside - gardening or walking or whatever. When the monsoon arrived at the end of January and we had torrential rain for about ten days I was going stir crazy!!

I'm also curious to see what will happen if I don't fill my free time with the busywork of making cards or sewing birds for craft fairs, etc. It will open up a space and I'm interested to see what that might allow, what seed might grow there.

It's also lovely to live without the 'shoulds' - I mean the feeling that I should be blogging, should be posting to instagram, should be getting work ready for craft fairs....etc. I wonder if all those shoulds have strangled my artmaking.

I don't say any of this with any certainty, I might be back in another month with a completely different story!

I'm still doing some stuff, I signed up for Lifebook again this year. It's a fun, no pressure way to include some art making in my life. Here's some of the pieces I've done so far.


Week 2 colourful intentions with Andrea Gomoll.


Week 3 two hands one heart with Ivy Newport 


Week 5 the custodian with Juna Biagioni.

Best wishes to you, I hope your 2018 has started well.