Last week the rain came at last. Dark clouds drifted over from the west and it began to bucket down. We went to sleep to that much-loved sound of rain on the tin roof. My husband loves it so much he refuses to get insulation in the ceiling for fear it will dampen the sound. It overflowed our uncleared gutters and saturated the verandah, but both tanks are now full and the dam is brimming. Next door the dam overflowed down into a gully on a neighbouring property, a temporary roaring waterfall. Everything feels clean and the grass became instantly green.

By Sunday it had eased and begun moving out to sea. We drove to a local waterhole to see how it looked now. Water flowed across the causeway, so we parked and waded through the shallow but swiftly flowing current to get across and then walk through the bush along the far bank to get to the swimming hole. The water was flowing fast, but slowed here as it widened and deepened. Maggie scrambled in as soon as she got there. We sat and watched on what little of the bank was left to sit on. The water level was higher, but not as high as it had been and we cursed ourselves for not taking away the pile of rubbish we saw there last time, left behind by people who don’t value these beautiful places. It was gone, washed down the river–bits of plastic and glass that may reek havoc on marine life out in the bay.

I eventually followed Maggie in and dove under the fresh flowing water. I grew up swimming in these kinds of swimming holes and they are still my favourite. They literally wash away stress. While the weather is still warm we plan to return with friends for a picnic. Old fashioned stuff, but a great day out.