I awoke near the bank of the river. Not too near. Listening in the gloomy dark of the early morning my senses were heightened to the slightest sound or movement. The sound of slow moving water filled the background and the rustle of wind through the dead leaves and branches. My nostrils filled with a putrid smell and I realised that the breeze had changed direction and was now blowing across the river. Was it the Hawkesbury? Two abandoned caravans lay in my periphery, silent and menacing. They could have offered some comfort but I was afraid to check the contents in the dark. Instead I had set myself a resting place among the rubbish under an old iron roofed chicken run.
In the gloomy light and finally awake after dozing off. The sky had that yellow – brown ting of smoke that seemed ever present these days, like a continuous bushfire. Gathering my things (not much) then picking my way carefully through the detritus I slowly began making my way towards the caravans. To my left were a series of crumpled brick piers. In the past I imagined this whole area had cabins and caravans and the sound of kids on bikes or in the pool. The sound of speed boats along the river. Now only silence. A bath half full of something lay in the dead grass ahead. It had a black solid crust over and caked along one edge. As I poked a stick through the crust the dark red ooze took me by surprise and made the hair on my neck prickle. I looked up….