When I was a child, growing up in Brisbane, it was a regular thing for us to pile into the car and go for a Sunday drive.
I remember sharing a seatbelt with my older sister, Barbie, and going out to the country in our big, hot-pink stationwagon. We'd count the cows in the fields and the dunnies in the outback - that's outdoor toilets for our overseas friends:-) - and we'd check to see if the animals were lying down, as we were certain that this meant we were in for a spot of rain. In Brisbane, that would so often mean a heavy downpour and it could happen very suddenly.
On one occasion, we inadvertently ran over a tortoise on a dirt track.
Immediately, my father stopped the car - in the middle of the road - and we looked through the hole in the floor (it was a vehicle with character:-/), searching to see what kind of creature had just become the latest road kill statistic. Happily, it turned out to be the little fellow's lucky day. The wheels had passed on either side of it, so we took it home as a pet:-D
I guess, these days, we would have been more environmentally conscious and we'd have left the wildlife alone in its ecosystem but, in those days, we quite happily picked wildflowers, collected shells and gathered specimens to study or nurture at home, later on.
I can't remember what we called that tortoise (perhaps, Sue remembers?) but I do know that he spent his time either under the house or, in winter, in the empty swimming pool. Everyone in our neighbourhood seemed to have an above ground pool - the summers were so long and hot, and air conditioning wasn't common. Creating a wind tunnel with open doors and fans was as sophisticated as it got.
Eventually, our little pet disappeared under the house, for the last time. We searched and searched, but he had obviously become tired of life as a pampered pet and he must have returned to the freedom of the wild.
It doesn't seem to be such common practice to go for a Sunday drive, these days. I've heard some people put this down to the high cost of petrol and others suggest that a simple drive is a poor alternative to our more modern entertainment choices. Whatever the reason, I love to continue the tradition with my own family and make memories for my children to pass down to their sons and daughters, in time to come.
The top photo was taken of two of my children, today, during our Sunday outing. The photo below is of me, Sue and our sister, Barbie, during our own Sunday drive days.
Here are some photos of today's outing along the coastal road, near where we live.
This beach is called The Entrance. It's a popular tourist spot, where those, who are more cultured than what we are, congregate at one of the trendy beach-side cafes for an expresso or a cappuccino. On a Sunday, it's a bit busy so we let Jordy finish sleeping, in his car seat, and we drove two beaches down to...
Here, the children had fun, in the sand dunes...
...and the rock pools.
The day had started cool but, once the sun came out, it felt like spring.
The water was surprisingly warm...
...and the rocks sheltered the children from the surf...
...but, they were very also slippery...
...and, when Joel fell down plop in the water, it suddenly became not so much fun for some;-)
So, we piled back into the car and went home, instead.
Here's a picture of our old family stationwagon. Imagine the psychedelic pink exterior and the view through the hole in the floor, and you get a fair idea of what it was like to travel in:-D