The Wollombi Valley is a beautiful place. Living in one of the most northern suburbs of Sydney means we can get on the road out of town relatively quickly and find ourselves in places far removed from the hustle and bustle of the big smoke….which is how we find ourselves in the Wollombi Valley. If I have visitors from overseas, I often take these back roads to the Hunter Valley, stopping for a sip of nature before we head north for something stronger.
Steve and I are in a writing mood and have come armed with our ultrabook and IPAD today. We are seated at a cafe happily working on our stuff and sipping our coffee lattés when one of the friendly locals starts to chat - having first checked to make sure we are not from the Department of Planning. Funnily enough the chatter is all about their LEP and some of the recent re-zoning that has happened recently. Land that should have been left rural has now ended up with a zoning that is yet to be resolved leaving something of these areas with a code that states ‘deferred’!
We learn about the politics that play out in these places. The struggle between the greenies, the farmers who need to make a living to survive and the retirees who come up here from Sydney, having made their money elsewhere and who wish to preserve this spot in a time capsule! It brings home to us that the solutions to problems are not black and white and that ultimately, preservation of the environment has to be balanced with the needs of the local community who have after all co-existed here for generations!
I seem to be in a very reflective mood…and don’t seem to have captured any pictures of the town itself…funny that!
Thanks to the interstate highway system, it is now possible to travel across the country from coast to coast without seeing anything. -Charles Kuralt, On The Road