Friday, April 15, 2011


I'm better. At least I think I'm better—I got some sleep last night!

And we had a perfect, happy day of adventures yesterday (with my husband driving so I didn't fall asleep at the wheel).

Happy Adventure + Sleep = Better. It's such a simple equation, isn't it?

Where did we go? Well, we went to a little town an hour from here that has more book stores in one street than in my whole city! Can you imagine the bliss I felt?

Plus the drive was so pretty.

Plus we spent the day with great friends. Talking, laughing, perusing, eating, all those good things.

Plus my kids were with two of their best friends. They hung out for almost 12 hours and never stopped being delighted by each other. Isn't that the best kind of friendship?

Plus we looked at toys, and art, and got art supplies.

Plus the kids stopped at every opportunity to write stories and draw.

Plus we spent hours surrounded by books. How lovely to be with friends who love books. My boy walked into the store and did this massive breath in. He said, "I love the smell of book shops!" He is my boy, all right.

Plus, and finally, we went on a moonlit night hike to see some glowworms in the National forest.

We met up with a group, and trip-trapped along the dark path together, looking up for possums now and then. The guide trained a red-cellophane-covered torch into the trees, so the light wouldn't hurt the possums' eyes. We think we saw a Greater Glider (which is special, the guide said). I saw two yellow points of light, blinking at me from high in a dark gum.

Down down we went, the air getting colder and damper, down steps and stairs to the bottom of a valley, ending up on a platform beside a rock wall with a creek burbling past.

And there it was: a wall of light.

Glowworm Glen.

Hundreds of little glowworm bottoms, shining in zig-zag lines. We had turned off our torches, so the glowworm light was all we could see. It was like being in a ballroom strung with fairy lights. And then, if you listened closely, you could hear the ping ping sound of microbats calling to each other through the dark (they sounded like little bells).

We stood for ages. I wanted to stay for hours. But the tour was heading back, so we wandered back up the path, our torches dots of lights through the trees. Like we were our own little glowworms, zig zagging up out of the valley.

We stopped to hear the guide tell us all about glowworms (did you know they're not worms at all? And they spend pretty much all their lives as larvae? And that they make traps for insects out of silk and mucus? Yum!)

Then on we went, past the wombat holes and the possums, through the night damp, past the ferns and wizened tree roots, looking up now and then to see the moon smiling through the trees.

It was magical.

And then it was time to say goodbye to our friends.
Time for hugs and "See you soon!"

Time to drive home, along the freeway, heads nestled onto pillows, chatting sleepily with my husband (whose head was not nestled on a pillow).

Home through the dark and through happy.

Home to sleep and sleep so deeply that before I knew it, it was morning.

And I was




  1. Well, lucky you told me after the event or you might have found one Karisma in your back pack! I LOVE books and book shopping is about the only shopping I really enjoy! Glad to hear you are on the mend, your questions cracked me up when I got home and checked my mail today. I will answer them all, yes I will. haha!

    Love and hugs xoxox

  2. teehee Karisma in your backpack and Yeshe in yer boot!

  3. You guys are great! :) Sorry about the tight squeeze in the boot, Yeshe! I could actually fit you guys in our big ol' mini van. Next time…

  4. I am going to have to go look up glowworms and find out more about them. It sounds like it really was magical!

    So glad you are feeling better.

  5. Sounds like a beautiful trip! I could spend lots of time and money in bookshops!

  6. I love wandering through bookshops. I can spend hours. Luckily so can my girls! My favorite is a children's bookshop on Cape Cod that I visit every year. Last time I went the library was holding a gigantic booksale on the town green. We came home from our vacation with bags of books!

  7. YES! Book stores hold something that e-books and e-readers can never offer. You can't really sniff your Kindle-thingy, can you?

    I want to see glow worm butts, too!

  8. Oh Helena!! What a great day. I love the picture of the kids with their stuffed animals. Does your girl do Webkinz? It is so funny because Kei asked me the other day "Do they have Webkinz in Australia Mom, do you think Helena's girl has one?"

    Love the bookstores. This makes me what to go explore one right now.

    And the glowworm hike!! OH MY..lovely lovely. I just know there were fairies hiding everywhere there! Did you see any?

    Glad you are feeling better my friend


I love hearing from you! Thank you for your heartfelt, thoughtful responses—they lift me, and give me light.