I pondered some time in a health farm – pros: peace, wellness, weightloss. Cons: couldn’t bear to leave my spectacular small one behind, prohibitively expensive. I wondered about a day at a spa – pros: relaxation, looking and feeling brighter. Cons: it’s just not long enough, the effects are fleeting and I’m not in the mood to make small talk.
No, the only solution is a weekend away in the country, easy driving distance from home (to minimise toddler travel time) and somewhere beautiful. And, since a change is as good as a rest, somewhere we have never been. This last criteria ruled out the usual suspects - Maleny, Montville, Mt Tamborine, Stanthorpe, Byron Bay Hinterland, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast – all had been visited and enjoyed by us on previous occasions, plus I was beginning to feel I wanted somewhere quieter, less touristy and with more room to breathe.
And then I found it: Lost World Valley. The very name conjures up images of a verdant wild place, forgotten for hundreds, perhaps thousands of years. At around 90 minutes from Brisbane, true forgetting isn’t possible of course but it is a hidden plateau (at the wilderness end of Lamington National Park) a place where it’s easy to imagine that anything could remain hidden and perhaps a part of oneself could be found.
We had an absolute ball. Agatha very quickly went “free range” toddling at great speed around the garden barefoot and excitedly pointing out birds and wallabies and cows. We popped into town and visited the museum and gathered supplies and then we came “home” and didn’t leave again until our too-short holiday was over. We enjoyed misty mornings, sunny afternoons and star-filled nights. We played football, dipped our toes in the (freezing) river, ate picnics, stretched out on the grass and absorbed the vitamin D.
In the evenings Andy and I talked and read and relaxed. No phone reception and no internet is a very good thing indeed. Nothing else mattered, just us and our glorious girl.
We decided that a place of our own in the country is in our future; the air, the space, the freedom was incredible. We don’t know where yet and of course I know that day-to-day life in the countryside has its challenges and it isn’t simply an extended version of the special weekend we just enjoyed but my word it’s where we want to be. I found my happy!