Last week, I packed the kids into the car, kissed Hubby goodbye and headed off to join the Pacific Climate Warriors in their battle against the coal ships. The boot was full to the brim with our tent, little stove, clothes etc. This particular protest meant a lot to me. For a start, our damaging use of fossil fuels desperately needs to change and NOW but more than that, we were heading off to protest with the very people who are already impacted by rising sea level. I spent my formative years growing up in Vanuatu and I am angry that so many people choose to ignore the plight of those in the Pacific. The bitter irony is that the islanders' lifestyles didn't cause the issue; nor did they benefit from the use of fossil fuels, yet they are now bearing the brunt of our actions.
We had planned on an easy trip up to Newcastle, using the time away as an opportunity to have a bit of a holiday. We set up our little tent at Goulburn, planning to continue on the next day. We were aware that rain was predicted for Newcastle but figured we could tough it out or spend a night in a cabin for shelter.
protest of the coal leaving the harbour. It felt scary though, to be so far from home with not much money, knowing no one locally and being aware that I was responsible for keeping my children safe.
There was a sense of relief to be heading back down the highway for home. I felt worn out from driving and from trying to make decisions on the hop. I had also struggled with providing for ourselves in a sustainable fashion while we were on the road. We ate organic tinned baked beans one night, tinned soup with bread another. We had to buy boxes of milk and breakfast cereal. The caravan parks didn't have recycling facilities. I thought about bringing our rubbish home but there wasn't an inch of spare space in the car. The children were already drowning in a sea of pillows, blankets and tourist maps so I guiltily placed our rubbish in the bin.
As we drove home, I reflected on the irony of not being able to participate in the protest for action against climate change DUE TO CLIMATE CHANGE!!! The very areas that snow fell had been battling bushfires at the same time last year. The previous year to that, snow!