The eucalyptus make such a susurration of sound, as of thousands of tiny dry tongues, all rasping against each other. The trees bend back and forth, swaying to the too-ing and fro-ing of the wind in the way of trees everywhere. Some act in harmony with the blow, bending more readily than others. A cracking sound accompanied by a drawn out screeching erupts, as wood rends against wood. A large branch, long dead but a moment ago still lofty in its position in the forest, finally plummets to its forever resting place with a crashing that temporarily stuns the forest creatures into silence; as if acknowledging the death. Ironically, the only three that disregard this final act, beings the trees themselves, their leaves and the wind.
The crickets all clicking their sonorous song roar back into life, although none appear to be in synchronisation at all.
Another rustling sound comes from the leaves at the feet of the giant gums. A monitor lizard scurries through, pauses then beats a hasty retreat. You’d think he’d forgotten to turn the iron off or something the way he whipped around and took off back the way he’d come. Something must have caught his eye back up the trail, for he was definitely going back to investigate.
Whip, whip; a bird chirrups, whilst another trills his song loud and long for all the world to hear, the sound pealing joyously back and forth up the sides of the valley. The sound so majestic it’s heart rending in its solitary beauty.
As if in response, loud laughter begins to peal around the valley. At first it comes from one throat, then two and finally three. Kookaburras’ all of them sounding like they’re having a great time of it. Their laughter almost drowning out every other sound in the valley.
Oblivious to anyone, be they listening or not, a flock of galahs go back to acting the fool; the colours of the pink and greys are so pretty. Calling out to one another as they flap about from branch to branch, some hanging upside down as they screech from time to time; all as if to say ‘look at me, look at me now!’ They’ve found a clearing by the creek; each of them using it as if it were an amphitheater, and them with a show to produce. Each try’s to outdo the other with their antics. One or two hoping around in the grassy clearing, looking for something to eat, but jumping around ludicrously – heads hopping and bopping, some in sync with their jumping, others not so much. One galah swoops low across their heads, screeching out to all as he flys so close to them, before coming to a screaming halt. Ludicrously he then plops down, rolling over onto his back, all the while making a tremendous racket.
A couple of magpies are also trolling through the grass in the little clearing. Busily looking for bugs and beetles and trying their best not to be drawn in by the tomfoolery of the galahs. It’s too much for one youngster, who hops over for a closer look. Immediately, he’s scolded by his parents. Even out of reach, the galahs also try to run him off. Usually it’s the magpies telling the galahs off, so it’s amusing to see.
The water puddles and gurgles along its bed, adding a softer tone to the cacophony. Bees, as if bumbling along to find out what all the gurgling is about, decide to pause awhile; coping a squat at waters edge and taking a sip in the cool shade.
A flash of green can be seen darting through the trees. There, and there, there it is again. Almost jewel-like, her colours flash as a Rosella flys back to the nest to feed her young. A second later the young ones are calling out for their feed, eager, knowing it’s imminent but impatient nonetheless.
It’s early morning here, and the world is just awakening. It’ll be a busy day as usual, the wildlife industrious in its daily habits, know enough to pause and enjoy the freshness of the morning.
A kangaroo hops and thumps its way through the clearing to the other side. He is massive. Another roo, much daintier than the first, although she’s fully grown, comes to a stop in the middle. Galahs flee to the tops of the trees, screeching and making much of the interruption, whereas the magpies continue their foraging. Everyone knows there’s no danger here, it’s just the galahs being…well, galahs.
The big roo stops at clearings edge under the trees and after standing on the tips of his toes and tail, sniffs the air and has a good look around. Deciding that this is a nice shady spot, he lays down. The female is still in the middle of the clearing, but where there had been one roo in the clearing a moment ago, now there’s two; for the dainty female has insisted on her joey leaving the pouch to join her in the sunshine. He does, and amusingly gambles about, as only a joey with little to no coordination can.
A crow calls out its maudlin caw, and another further down the valley responds. Their mournful calls continue for awhile, but slowly drop into the background.
I wish I could share the glory of this morning with you. For you too could hear the joy from their throats for yourself, see the beauty with your own eyes. But you’re obviously too busy, roaring down the road, passing us by, completely oblivious to all around you.
Oh, look there! It’s a gecko, banded red and pink, clinging to the side of the tree. It stepped out from between the bark and is licking its lips. I wonder if it’s in anticipation of the next meal, or if it just finished? I think I’ll watch, and find out for myself.
Enjoy your journey! I know I will enjoy mine.