My last weekend in Cape Tribulation was a glorious farewell to a dream come true. The thing about dreams come true (I'm realising with the perspective of someone facing her double 21st birthday tomorrow) is that a dream come true is not an end point. It might be a culmination, a reward, a blissful interlude or a turning point, but then life goes on.
Rob demonstrates how to shatter the peace of the ponds by jumping into the plunge pool, which has been a lifesaver over the past weeks of extreme heat- some days I was in and out of the water every hour or so.
So after spending half my life dreaming about living in a treehouse in the Daintree, I actually did it for half a year. Some things about the experience aligned with my hopes: learning to understand the rainforest and being inspired by its beauty, peace and mystery. Other things surprised me: like learning to love the beach and being inspired by the Great Barrier Reef.
Later on my last afternoon we were invited to go sea kayaking. I'd been out the day before, but in the rain, so the chance to go again with Paddle Trek in perfect conditions was too good!It's been an intense, challenging, relaxing, fun, emotional, productive, hard, inspiring, frustrating, lonely, educational, beautiful and surprising six months. I left Cape Tribulation with new skills, new friends, more than a dozen new poems, two new websites and a fantastic tan.
Despite all the many delights of that tropical rainforest: despite my deep and abiding love of the birds and trees and butterflies and coral and despite my addiction to a warm climate, I now know I can't live there forever. It's too damp to make books or even own them; and too isolated for me to make a living or a social life. So I'm moving on, in search of a warm home where I can have a comfortable and productive life, balancing access to the natural world and stimulating society.
I've got a bit of travelling to do though, before I can settle down, so off I paddle, into the sunset....