There is so much to love about the Australian landscape. Even if you live in a high density city in Australia you don’t have to travel far to enjoy the bush: the Australian landscape.
Getting outside into the Australian landscape has huge health benefits. All we have to do is walk. Walking can decrease our blood pressure, improve our physical and mental health and reduce our risk of disease. When walking in the bush I like to take deep breaths and smell the country air while enjoying the breathtaking views and the sounds of the bush.
We have spent a few days in the Scenic Rim staying at a country retreat in Coleyville (90 acre cattle farm). It’s a small holding, more a hobby farm than a business enterprise. We had the chance to visit my friend Heather who lived only a ten minute drive away (the other side of Mt Walker). When visiting we talked about the lichen on her vine that covers her pergola. I mentioned that lichens are used as environmental indicators. They tell us that the air is clear and pure. If you have lichen on your trees and shrubs that is a good thing!
While we have an unparalleled Australian landscape there are other places across the world that have mountainous terrains, forrests, lakes, rivers and streams that are also exceptional.
But despite the beauty of the Australian landscape we do experience weather extremes. Right now the countryside in many states of Australia are a dust bowl. There is not a blade of grass in sight. The owners of the property where we stayed in Coleyville once paid $9.00 for a bale of hay. They are now paying $28.00 a bale.
It is a tough time for farmers in times of drought. Now the drought has reached small townships. People are unable to water their gardens, lawns and even washing the car is prohibited. By the end of August, without rain, the town of Stanthorpe will run out of water.
We need the rains. The words of the poem by Dorothea Mackellar ‘I love a sunburnt country’ ring hollow in our ears at times like this. Last year Scott Morrison, Prime Minister of Australia, said he was praying for rain in drought afffected areas. Then there are people who scoff about prayer, as if that would make a difference! But if God is the rainmaker maybe all who believe should give it a go! Read a story written by Kaley Payne about Skye Agar (a high school student who was a boarder in Toowoomba for five years). It tells the story about how tough it really is for those in the bush. How quickly the Australian landscape can change!