On your bike (alternate title The Secret of Health and Happiness)

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I’m sitting on my bike feeling like an athlete

Pumping on the pedals pushing hard with two feet

Think I’m 21, not true but it would be so sweet

Trying to stretch my body to a 60+ life cheat

 

The wheels below me spin going nowhere above the concrete floor

The resistance trainer squeals getting hotter at its core

Parrots on the outside watch me through the open door

As I sweat and puff and grip to gain a minute more

 

I took the vow on January 1 a New Years resolution

To plan a longer fuller life a Seaniverse solution

Write a recipe to follow to my end of days  conclusion

For what it’s worth I thought I’d share it take or leave my proposition

 

Health and happiness can be elusive when ageing as I am

Failing mind and body are inevitable and then bam

You die a death one way or another no way to stop it man

So get there smart, sharing and active as best you can

 

You can’t be everything to everybody but you can share with a few

You can’t extend beyond your limits but there may be limits you never knew

You can be concerned about the future or plan for it ahead

It may not work the way you planned but that’s an opportunity instead

 

So here’s the recipe for trying it’s not really all that hard

It’s based on good and bad experience, read from lots of greeting cards

Exercise mind and body, I run walk ride read and write

Consciously enjoy the present, there’s no point worrying through the night

Appreciate the world around you mindfully it’s the only way that’s right

Action your ideas, you’ll feel sharp and crisp and bright

Socialise with others in ways appropriate for each

Permit allow enjoy, calm rest and sleep makes life a beach

 

A considered “Yes” is the right answer almost every time

Follow these simple rules to be secure and feeling fine

It’s EEAASSY

  • Exercise mind & body
  • Enjoy the present
  • Appreciate
  • Action your ideas
  • Socialise
  • Sleep
  • Yes – is the right answer most of the time

 

I do appreciate for some it is not so easy, health of mind and body are fragile things, security can be a fragile thing. My best wishes to you all. I hope, possibly, maybe something above can be of assistance somewhere, sometime.

The point of human living

The awareness that comes to us via consciousness and the tool of language suggests to many of us there is a point to our existence

However, there is no rational justification for this view

In a very complicated way

Human existence simply happened

It has no intrinsic need of purpose or explanation

It is our egos that ask for that

It is the same for all of us

Human existence manifests as human living

Neither has any point to it

No enduring purpose other than as a fact to be accepted,

Or, possibly as an exclusive point in its own right

As an optimist, I choose the second version of what is essentially the same thing

Although I am unsure what this implies regarding longevity

As it still suggests much is futile

Because the longer each of us lives the more we understand human nature

Consequent behaviours replay across history for better and worse

Same dreams, hopes, ambitions

Same responses, actions, strategies

Same reactionary outcomes that trend toward destruction

To the extent, we often ask why bother?

Well, I guess we might as well

So, “Does it matter?” becomes redundant

Even if meaning could be universally applied

Lack of comprehension regarding our beginning and knowledge of the inevitable end render meaning meaningless

There can be no result, no understanding to be gleaned, no purpose

So where is the point of human living?

In the scheme of things (that doesn’t exist) it doesn’t matter whether you live or not,

But at least you get to choose

You either might as well or not

I choose to live for the transient pleasure of it, the observation, the feeling of it, the moments of joy, the acknowledgement that consciousness came to be and will come to pass, the participation, the experience of love, for being here now – if you like that set of clichés

However, the future is a place of little significance to me other than to say I would hope for my family and coming generations to also have the necessary security to enable them to share the ephemeral opportunity to appreciate being

Such a curious legacy of hope begot from my love

Lake Nagambie Walk

Trail Checklist

Name:

  • Lake Nagambie Foreshore Walk20191105_pho_LakeNagambie01

Responsible Authorities:

  • Strathbogie Shire Council
  • Goulburn Murray Water
  • Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority

Acceptable modes of transit:

  • Walk

Distance & duration

  • 3km return via High St or Lakeside Drive

GPS coordinates & map

36°47’07.8″S 145°09’11.0″E

-36.785508, 145.153068

20191112_pho_LakeNagambieMapGrading (using the Parks Vic Track and Trail Grading Manual):

Grade 2

Amenities:

  • Public toilets
  • Car parking
  • Potable water
  • Fishing
  • Swimming
  • Playgrounds
  • Ornamental gardens
  • Platypus sightings possible under footbridge
  • Picnic areas
  • Seating, tables and automatic bbqs
  • Shelters
  • Boat ramp
  • Water sports
  • Boardwalk
  • Side exercise trail to Blayney Lane

Hazards

Snakes, slippery surfaces, embankments, falling trees and limbs, deep water

Restrictions

  • No camping
  • Restricted alcohol consumption times

Trailhead sign

  • No

Informational Signs

  • Yes

Directional signs / bollards or trail markers

  • No

Conclusion

This pleasant walk is in current use and offers many amenities to visitors. A feature map brochure, separate to the Nagambie Tourist Map and including the Regatta Centre Walk, would encourage more people to extend their visit beyond just looking over the Lake from High Street.

Honeysuckle Creek Walk

Trail Checklist

Name:

Honeysuckle Creek Walk, Violet Town

HoneysuckleWalk02

Responsible Authority:

Authorities

  • Strathbogie Shire Council
  • Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (GB CMA)

Community

  • Honeysuckle Recreational Environment Project (HREP)
  • Violet Town Action Group (VTAG)

Acceptable modes of transit:

  • Foot and cycle

Distance & duration

  • 3km as a circuit or divided into 1km or 2km loops across bridges

GPS coordinates & map

36°38’01.0″S 145°43’05.8″E

-36.633606, 145.718286

Honeysuckle

Grading (using the Parks Vic Track and Trail Grading Manual):

  • Grade 2

Amenities:

  • Multiple entry points
  • Easy car parking
  • Open parks and gardens
  • Native plantings
  • Good for bird watching
  • Picnic tables and seating
  • Informational signage
  • 4 Bridges across creek
  • Public toilets in adjacent Recreation Reserve
  • Rubbish bins in adjacent Recreation Reserve
  • Shelter in adjacent Recreation Reserve
  • Sporting facilities including swimming pool and Skate Park in adjacent Recreation Reserve
  • Caravan Park
  • Commercial centre nearby

Hazards

Snakes, tree and limb falls, flowing water, uneven ground and slippery surfaces

Restrictions

  • No camping
  • No horses
  • No dirt bikes

Trailhead sign

  • Not present

Directional signs / bollards or trail markers

  • Present, but not always and can be unclearBrochure  – HREP brochure available

Conclusion

This is an established, easy, bushy parkland walk with options for longer or shorter loops available. It is currently in frequent use by the public.

Reedy Lake

Trail Checklist

Name:

Reedy Lake Wildlife Reserve, Kirwan’s Bridge

  • At present Reedy Lake is empty of water.

ReedyLake

Responsible Authority:

  • Parks Vic

Community

  • None known

Acceptable modes of transit:

  • Walk, cycle, horse, mountain bike, dirt bike, 4WD

Distance & duration

  • 4km wide Reedy Lake Rd has four approx. 1-2km access tracks into the lake

GPS coordinates & map

36°43’31.4″S 145°07’13.8″E

-36.725397, 145.120493

ReedyLake

Grading (using the Parks Vic Track and Trail Grading Manual):

No common walking trails were found. The tracks to and around the lake are 4WD and dirt bike, heavily rutted and boggy when wet. Many peripheral tracks are being created. Controlled access along engineered dirt roads would improve this situation.

Amenities:

  • Camping
  • 4WD
  • Dirt bikes
  • Horses
  • Water activities when water is present
  • Highly significant Aboriginal cultural place
  • Significant birdwatching site
  • Diverse ecological vegetation classes within Reserve (flora)

Hazards

Snakes, tree and limb falls, slippery surfaces, getting bogged, dumped rubbish, uncontrolled camping, uncontrolled tracks and trails

Restrictions

  • Take your rubbish with you
  • No potable water
  • No toilets

Trailhead sign & Informational Signs

  • Only a one board naming sign seen

Directional signs / bollards or trail markers

  • None

Brochure 

  • None

Conclusion

At the present time, this location appears to be dominated by 4WD and dirt bikes. Tracks were impassable by other means. Dry weather would change this. No established trails for non-mechanised use were evident. Litter and dumping of rubbish was evident. Reports mention an uncontrolled camping site. This was not seen. One concrete grated wood bbq was found near one entry point. However, it did not appear to have been used and evidence of other open fires nearby suggested camping occurs in this location at random. Reedy Lake can be enjoyed by a diverse range of recreational users, particularly when water is present in the lake. However, it is also subject to abuse. Ideally, this would be corrected by planning for improvements in multi-purpose access and oversight by Parks Vic.

Ruffy Snow Gum Reserve Walking Track

Trail Checklist

SnowGumWalk Extends from Noyes Lane, Ruffy.

This track meanders down an unused road reserve through open Narrow-leaf Peppermint forest until it crosses a walking bridge and enters the Ruffy Flora Reserve. A circuit of this reserve takes you through swampy riparian woodlands dominated by ancient Mountain Swamp Gums. The path continues past a tiny population of Snow Gums, remnants of a colder climate, and skirts a chain of dark deep billabongs into bandicoot and koala territory.

Responsible Authority:

Road Reserve: Strathbogie Shire Council

Ruffy Nature Conservation Reserve: DELWP

Acceptable modes of transit:

Walk (mountain bike and horse with track improvement)

Distance & duration

3km return, 1.5hrs to the Reserve.

Additional loops could be added:

  • 4km via Bunting Hill Rd
  • 6km via Terip Church

GPS coordinates & map

36°58′4″ S 145°30′56″ E

-36.967745, 145.514873

Snowgums Trail Ruffy

Grading (using the Parks Vic Track and Trail Grading Manual):

Grade 3. Flat, but with some uneven ground and open woodland debris underfoot. Could be rated easy with trail clearance.

Amenities:

The walk commences at the Ruffy Recreation Ground, Maygar Park.

Parking at the Ruffy Recreation Ground

Shelter and picnic facilities at the Recreation Ground

Toilets at the Ruffy Recreation Ground

Horse containment at the Recreation Ground

Hazards

Tree & branch falls, uneven surfaces, bogs, flowing water, snakes

Restrictions

Take your rubbish with you

No potable water

Trailhead sign & Informational Signs

No trailhead sign in situ (there is one in poor condition that has been removed).

Directional signs / bollards or trail markers

No directional signs on nearby roads

No trail markers along the trail, but some exist within the Reserve

Brochure 

Available

Conclusion

This trail has the potential to be a key feature for visitors to Ruffy. With some basic work, it could be improved considerably.  This trail is currently accessible to walkers and is in occasional use. However, until the trail has been cleared for snake sighting, recommended use is probably best confined to the cooler months. With improvement, it would be a viable all year walking, mountain bike and horse trail.

Dreamland

Ah, my chimeric and fanciful place

A world to inhabit when I displace

Where food is abundant and water is clear

Where choices are free I’ll ne’er shed a tear

Where sharing is normal no money spent

Home is a shelter without mortgage or rent

Ideas are born to be actioned for pleasure

Actions observed for outcomes or leisure

Thinking is respected intellectual pursuit

Everyone loves and all follow suit

Where judging is absent because no one judges

Where grudges are absent because no one grudges

Where religion only follows the Gaia led path

To planetary health such joy makes me laugh

My friends are my friends conflict unknown

We simply marvel at how friendship keeps growing

A fortunate sighting

Image

RedbackIInDidgeridooThere is a Redback living in the didgeridoo. Lucky I noticed it tonight, sitting in its web just outside the mouthpiece. It nimbly disappeared inside as soon as I took the photo. The didgeridoo rarely gets used, but occasionally someone wants to give it a try. Could have been nasty! I will try to catch it and put it outside.

You know where I’m going with this (short version)

SPOKEN2019

This weekend I organised the second annual “Strathbogie has SPOKEN” event. We had 22 presenters and an audience of 50-60. This number pretty well filled our small, and acoustically delightful venue, St Andrew’s Church in Main Street. It was a seamless and fascinatingly diverse set of orations that made the two hours fly by. I kicked things off with a shortened version of the political piece below, which I wrote last year. It felt good to give written work air!

 

you know where I’m going with this

 

to the crush of high density and population growth

my oath

you and me both

with the new city millions that come

to the bustle and hum

to the high tensile strums

of the energy guns

at our heads

pay the bills or family fed?

that is the question we dread

as executive bonuses build mansions and poseurs

as the export of gas ups the home prices real fast

and don’t talk to me about electricity duplicity

so mean to me

these corporate utilities

fat cats

and multinats

squeeze me til I’m dry

then have another try

so my life is a scythe

cut the stress with a knife

kiss goodbye to the wife

and the kids and the love that I loved

for love’s sake

it’s a home bake

 

you know where I’m going with this

 

to parliament house

the joint of no nouse

of no brain

of no gain

where celebrity reigns

where the state of the nation equates with fashion

our political ration gets smaller and smaller

as narcissism, self-interest and recidivism ism their way to the fore

we want more

no!

they want more

no yore

just more

for the future is now a cash cow to be milked at the fence

of public expense

as the full and the fat suck at the teat

for the treat

of squeezed taxpayers sweet forming rivers of milk

and honey

 

or is it money?

pouring forth from a new scam

that’s rude

derived from ineptitude

it may be batts

it may be courses

they may be entrepreneurs

but they’re on the horses

bolted

after the gates have closed

 

you know where I’m going with this

 

to the US beholden

superpower

olden

folding the flag

turning for home

in the gloaming of their watch

withdrawing notch by notch

uncertain where the crotch of the matter lies

or whether their power even applies

exerting pressure as trade plies

but no so sure regarding human rights

and the rise

of the stateless states

the unreliable mates

the dates that became rapes

where the bright promising spring

quickly winged

to a cold dark winter

on the sling of David

and the Saudi flings

the belated failings

where democracy no longer sings

 

you know where I’m going with this

 

away from paradise lost

from the costs

from the Fausts

from the oppressive hosts

from the submerging coasts

to the ghosts of the past

rewritten to last

where my heart listens for hope in the sparks of principles sublime

not bereft

but to the time I have left in the cleft between life and death

in hope of nurture

in the sweet natural wealth of transparency ….. before stealth

 

you know

you know

you know where I’m going with this

My aubade

My aubade for thee

Played lovingly

Under window thine

On morning fine

Post sleepless night

Love’s tortured plight

I sing to confess

Hand on breast

 

As my music plays

I see our days

Together ahead

In love’s soft bed

Rich with the melody

Of my love for thee

 

Listen my love

At rest above

Unto me call

To climb thy wall

Open thy window

Into which I’ll go

To lie with thee

In love’s company

This is how I love you

You know how much I love you – much

I love so much to touch you – touch

Let’s not make a fuss about it – fuss

Just live and love together – just

I adore you I am all yours – adore

The more I see you the more I want you – more

Let’s spend our love together – love

Above the mundane we’ll rise – above

Be as one known one to – one

Like sun you light my world – like sun