« I love a sunburnt country…. a land of flooding rains”
Dorothea McKellar My Country
Australia is a land of excess. Its a place where a drought can last for twenty years to be broken by saturating rains that produce once in a lifetime floods. Climate change has only exacerbated these extremes. Last week I drove through the ACT, New South Wales and Victoria. Two states and the Capital Territory- where each countryside in was painted in green. Normally, there would be distinct areas of brown earth, dryness and drought. But every landscape in this journey was consistently green. Not just an ordinary green either but a rich verdancy of those deep forests in northern countries. Some parts were the colour of Kermit the Frog from Sesame Street and others a perfect cmouflage for the green tree frog varieties of Tasmania and Queensland.The dams were full, the rivers flooding, the gardens in the small towns blossoming and the wildflowers prolific. If you were a visitor to Australia at this time you would have a very different view of the Australian climate and countryside to how it usually is in early Spring. It has been steadily raining for weeks, not in the usual areas but in the unlikely parts too. Many farmers in drought declared country shouted for joy which was short lived as the rain turned to floods. Yet there is always someone or thing to benefit from an excessive weather pattern and this year it will be the waterbirds who will find many places in which to lay their eggs and feed their young. And of course those wonderful green creatures the frogs.This year it might be a bit easier being green!