I’ve started to lose track of how many days I’ve been at home now as part of our contribution to the Covid19 containment measures. Each day is much the same and much like the day before. Mind you, the only real difference to pre-Covid times is my week is no longer punctuated by coffees and long lunches with friends through the week.
As much as I’m missing my those face-to-face social interactions, I’m also getting anxious about missing the incredible transformation happening in the Macquarie Marshes. There’s been 260mm of rain across the area since the beginning of the year, and flows from the Macquarie reached the wetland in early March.
I’ve seen photos of the reeds sticking their heads above water, bouncing back from fire and drought. I’ve also photos of some of the fauna – water birds and turtles. I now want to hear the change – the bird song, the croaks and gronks, the rustle of wind through the reeds – gone the crunch of brittle red gum leaves underfoot. I want to smell the dampness of the soil, that in February crumbled and sifted through my fingers – the expectation being it’ll squish and bubble like clay in my hand. And gone will be the stink of rotting kangaroo carcases, now underwater – water that dragonflies use as their performance stage.
I’m now marking time. Watching updates from afar, reading, thinking, chewing over ideas, and preparing for my next trip to Burrima with experiments in my back paddock. I’m looking for markers of change – macro investigations under water and above ground, that clearly say this landscape has entered a new cycle.