I was born in Sydney’s St George hospital, and at the age of six my father, two brothers and a sister moved to little village Pottsville on the Far North coast NSW. Our school of 72 students was to take us through to our High School years. We moved the other side of Cabarita in town sized Kingscliff for this time as it was an easy walk for me and the troops to ‘Kingy High’. This was to be our family home which we still all call home now.
Needless to say it was a far cry from city dwelling. Backing onto Cudgen creek and the ocean meant that large open spaces and utilising nature for our entertainment was a given. Surfing, front yard cricket and pitching wedges to 7 irons hit to ‘the old man’ in the back reserve were common afternoon activities. Local Bronte and Maroubra kids could probably recall common passtimes, but it was the pace of life that appears to be the predominant difference in country living.
It was University that brought me to my first city living. University of Queensland in big bright ‘Brisvegas’. Well….. so the big country town seemed at the time. Bright lights, nightclubs and new bars.. What more could a young Uni student want? Well, how about waves, open spaces and shoeless living!!! That yearning was still strong.. weekend trips home with a growing posse of Brissy lads in tow were an essential aspect of maintaining sanity and a balanced mind.
There’s no doubt I can’t escape the excitement and vibrance of city living at this point in my life. That’s clear by choosing to spend 3 years living in London, where I was working for Surry Cricket team (at the infamous Oval cricket ground) and running the physio department for Heathrow and Gatwick airports. In London as now in Sydney, I have felt a constant desire to achieve mental balance. Sydney escapes may not seem as exotic as short breaks to spain, portugal, Morocco or France, yet I can assure can be just as beautiful and equally beneficial to the psyche.
Madi and I are regular south coast visitors. Camping at Gerroa, walks through the National Park and then surfs at Gerrie Beach are such easy little weekend or even day missions. They have an amazing way of washing away the pressures of a big week and reinvigorating enthusiasm for what’s ahead. They also make you appreciate what the city has to offer and help you make the most of it.
If your looking for a really cool walk with some great Aussie forest, insane ocean views and a rewarding end point scene of rock pools and sea life, you have to head down to the figure of 8 pools in our Royal National Park (one of the worlds oldest). We leave from Otford and walk north, although you can come all the way from Bundeena if you wanted to do an overnighter. I’ve thrown a couple of our photos in here for inspiration. Could be getting a little cold for the skinny dip, but the walk is glorious.
Don’t forget to look after yourself. Maintaining balance is essential for our health and wellness.