Be at Glenelg
Look at the old woman hunched over her walker who smiles at harried passersby when she stops to lick her ice-cream in the sun. Watch that white-haired man cross the road as though there were no cars fishing tackle in hand eyes fixed on the sea. Notice the couple struggle uphill to let their adult child savour the sea-fresh breeze from his wheelchair. Listen to little children giggle and squeal on lawns run, fall, play in soft sand, gulls swooping for salty chips with gurgled-whoops while parents fight and lovers kiss. Hear the tram clank to a halt every 15 minutes to disgorge tourists from outer suburbs and far away. Let winter’s beach enchant with its gay parade of silks and saris floral cotton headscarves hijabs, beanies, sunnies, jeans and joggers. Wonder at lycra-clad cyclists who weave through the throng sinewed calves pumping against the onrush of age. They pause only for coffee. Stay till summer sounds of babes and laughter a whiff of burgers and the taste of freedom sharing ice cream.
Lindy Warrell is a retired anthropologist who studied and taught at the University of Adelaide. She did field work in Sri Lanka, towards her PhD in the anthropology of myth, ritual and religion. She also worked across Australia for a number of years as a consultant on Aboriginal heritage matters, mostly in the Top End of the Northern Territory. As a child she lived in Japan, but being a publican’s daughter she was born and raised in outback pubs, including The Transcontinental Hotel in South Australia’s Oodnadatta. She loves jazz, the bush and the ocean, and is revising the first draft of her first novel, though increasingly time is being spent on poetry.