I am a writer and coordinate the Mordialloc Writers’ Group. I have set up this blog to interact with writers and friends and promote the group’s anthologies and my own writing. I write poetry, short stories, short plays, fiction and non-fiction, memoir and creative nonfiction. Although teaching creative writing for 15 years, I am as passionate about social justice and equity as I am about writing.
One writes out of only one thing—one’s own experience. Everything depends on how relentlessly one forces from this experience the last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give.
Mordialloc has been my home for 31 years, but I can’t shake off Scotland, my birthplace, or the years growing up ‘in the bush’ at Croydon, Victoria where we settled in 1962. The first nine years of my life were spent in semi-rural Scotland on the edge of Greenock, a shipbuilding town on the banks of the River Clyde. Years spent travelling in the UK, Canada, USA, China, Europe, Japan, the Pacific Islands, New Zealand and Australia, imprinted firmly in memory.
I write about it all – the minutiae and the big picture.
Beach Road shadows the foreshore and in the summer is jammed with cars, motorbikes, and bicycles. The blare of car horns and occasional angry words punctuate the normal traffic din as people journey to and from the city and the peninsula seeking fun of warmer weather.
The walking trail becomes crowded and sometimes dangerous with family cyclists, dog walkers, joggers, parents pushing strollers, keep fit enthusiasts and tourists ambling the track to soak up the beauty of Port Phillip Bay.
For many locals, including me, the beach on a very hot day must be avoided; instead the evening a favourite time to walk the foreshore, or cooler weather, when a winter breeze chills the air and spasmodic rain enlivens the scent of tea-tree, eucalyptus, and banksias.
In cooler months, the population of Mordialloc returns to normal levels, the sand, pier and promenade dotted with only a handful of people – mostly dog walkers tracing their path along the water edge, keep fit fanatics, or tourists visiting locals.
Ah the beach: being rocked in the slight waves, walking and getting soaked to the edge of your knickers by an expectedly deep wave splashing around your ankles. In awe, you watch a sunset stain pink the sand, grass, even the seagulls.
Serendipitously running into friends who happen to park directly behind where you’re sitting or are following the same path as you are as you stride or stroll along the foreshore.
You catch up with local news, celebrate a special anniversary, perhaps share a dinner or cool drink at one of the many local cafes. Lots of lovely hugs and laughter and reliving special memory days.
Life can be unexpectedly kind and beautiful, just when you need it most.