Said goodbye to Alix and all my Yamba friends after we went swimming at the quarry in Angourie (blue pools) which was pretty sad. Then drove out to Byron to meet up with Kirstie and Marcus.
Drove up to the Gold Coast and went swimming at the Natural Bridges Waterfall
You're not actually allowed to swim in the falls, or even go anywhere near it, but we didn't want to pass up a great opportunity. Once the last of the tourists left the cave we climbed over the railing and hopped in, even after a threat on a sign of an "80 points fine"... whatever that means? The water was the perfect temperature, and the falls were not too strong to swim underneath.* When I got out I realized a group of people had gathered and a couple of them were filming, I thought we were busted.. or at the very least going to be hassled, but a lot of them were just excited for us.
Played a pretty awesome show in Rhys' backyard (pictured underneath the waterfall in the second picture). When he wrote free ginger beer on the flyer he wasn't kidding... there were over 40 bottles in his kitchen. I could finish one, and that was my limit.Rhys also filmed this show with a super high-tech camera
oh yeah, and I shaved off my beard.
(and I look super sketchy)
Drove back the Byron that night, and in the morning met up with Marcus and Rick at the Bangalow markets which was INSANELY big, and it was scorching out in the sun. Ate some delicious raw food and hung around the Sea Shepherd tent mostly. Afterward went to the local Co-op grocery store and met up with Rhys and Sommer. Hung out in a park down the street for a good while, until an Aboriginal man approached Marcus and myself accusing us of staring at him without having the common decency to introduce ourselves. We were taken aback because neither of us had been staring, and there was really no opportunity to even get a word in otherwise. Accused of being racist, and not given the chance to talk about it we left the park. I was pretty bummed about the interaction, but Marcus and I talked about how his fear of being judged by us is the same that we felt. and that his approach to the situation is reactionary to the racist society that he lives in.**
Spent the rest of the day skating at the park in Mullumbimby. Pretty awesome park, that's all I can say.
My last 5 days in Australia starts today. Not wanting to go home, though I probably should. Marcus jokes about getting a petition started to have Australia "adopt" me haha. A lot people tell me if I want citizenship I just need to know who Kevin Rudd is (he's the prime minister, duh) so I think I could handle that.
For Love and Liberation,
*Last time Marcus was there it was raining pretty hard, and apparently almost drowned when he swam underneath it
**Aboriginals have faced (and still are facing) hundreds of years of oppression, assimilation, displacement and genocide. Their plight has a lot of similarities to the treatment of indigenous peoples during the colonization of the Americas. In fact tomorrow is "Australia Day", which is considered by some as "invasion day". In Byron there is a celebration of Aboriginal history and culture at an event called "Survival Day" which I will be attending. I'll let you know how that goes.
P.S. fuck nationalism