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28 October 2014

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You are in Your Space > Your Travel > Richard Collinson > Australia Visit
Brisbane Boys College
Richard Collinson outside the other BBC - Brisbane Boys College

We are launching a new section, Your Travel, where we as you to tell us about your holiday's. Richard Collinson kicks off with his Australia visit - here part three.


The early days in Oz were spent catching up with friends and former workmates. I was staying with an old teaching colleague Bill, and now my world travel mate.

Toowong Social Club
Toowong Social Club

We both missed out on the new phenomenon of "taking a year out" or "travelling", and so as not to permanently miss out; as two old fogies we were determined to travel further, climb higher, swim deeper, surf longer, than most of our much younger tourists… or at least we like to think so!

Brisbane is a very homely city, it stretches out for some considerable distance nowadays on all sides.Its centre is not on the coast but like Perth some distance upriver. A river which snakes round with meandering loops and with some dignity.

One such loop encapsulates the highrises of the city centre,and that centre point has a diameter which is easily walkable. At one end you can finish up in the green refuge of the City Botannical Gardens containing a wonderful selection of trees,at the other, the former Expo site from the late 80,s which is now a manmade river side beach.

Whichever direction you travel from the city skyscrapers, you are surrounded by suburbia. But suburbia covered in the most exotic foliage, Poinciana, Oleander, Hibiscus, Poinsettia and the magnificent Jacaranda trees just bursting into their full November bloom of bright blue.

Lamington national park
Lamington national park

The early days back in Oz were spent catching up with friends and former work colleagues.The reunion at the Hibiscus Restaurant of the B.B.C. "Toowong Social Club", in this case B.B.C. standing for Brisbane Boy's College.

I'd previously worked in the Primary School Department and it was great to meet up again after some 15 years. Not many people can say I suspect, they've worked at two B.B.C.'s and both totally unrelated.

It was equally good to revisit the colonial style sandstone building of the school a treasure of Brisbane's architecture and for me a very special place.

The staff, in personel hadn't changed too much though the school itself had grown considerably.It was indeed good to meet up again with some very special people. The colonial sandstone is prevalent in the older city centre buildings, a legacy from almost a hundred years ago,but they are literally dwarfed by the highrise newcomers.A parallel to the nearby rainforest canopy which is just a short distance away, 7kms west of Brisbane past Mount Cootha and also West of the Gold Coast highrise apartment blocks in the Lamington National Park.

Binna Bura in the rainforest
Binna Bura in the rainforest

That brought me to a second very special place. Binna Burra in the Lamington Park was a place I regularly drove out to when I was living in Queensland. The area contains a rich variety of rainforest walks, long or short depending upon your mood or the time available.

You're guranteed a sight of the parrots returning in a blaze of colour near to the old house,always at dusk which never varies much either side of 6 o'clock in the evening summer or wintertime.

The exotic colour created by the whole range of life in this region combines with the constant buzz of the insects in particular those busy Secatas.

They highlight the real vibrancy of nature in the sub tropics and especially the rainforest areas,the term "alive and buzzing" springs to mind…….it was, ……. great to be back!

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