I just got back from a weekend in Toowoomba with my boyfriend. It was a nice break from the loud city of Brisbane. You know the old western movies with the old rustic iron wind mills? Well, Toowoomba has them. Toowoomba is nestled on the edge of the Great Dividing Range Mountains. The Mountains are not exactly what a Midwesterner would call "Mountains", but to the Australian's they are mountains. Toowoomba is also known as the Garden City of Australia.
But a lot of the area resembled home to me.
Some people might think I am crazy, but when I saw the fields It made me excited. I guess after seeing beaches and tropical trees and flowers - my eyes wanted to be refreshed with the familiar, since I am from the small North Western Minnesota town, Twin Valley I am used to the fields and harvest time since it is a huge farming community. The planted fields and unplanted fields made me feel at home. Small things catch my attention and make me excited!
While in Toowoomba, Johan and I went to a writer's workshop where Kathy Hoopmann, Australian writer spoke about Memoir writing. She wrote the book All Cats Have Aspergers Syndrome. Check out her work at her website: www.kathyhoopmann.com/index.html It was an interesting workshop because we talked about real stories. Our stories as humans. It was so interesting because, being the only American in the workshop I was surrounded by the stories of so many people from all over the world. Johan, my boyfriend was originally from South Africa. There were a few Australian's from Toowoomba and a near by town called Warwick (It made me think of when I was travelling in England because there was a Warwick Castle.) There was also an Italian. Kathy had lived in the United Arab Emirates for a few years with her family. It was so interesting hearing all these people talk about different things that happened in their lives. One story I thought was funny, was that one of the people from Toowoomba spoke about how when they were younger they would have to burry the cows when they died and if they didn't burry them deep enough they would have to saw off the cows legs. One such time there was a group of bicyclers riding past. Imagine the looks on their faces when they road past? What kind of stories do you have in your past? How about your family?
It was absolutely an amazing time. Then after the workshop, Johan and I went to Queens Park in Toowoomba and walked around. Being from Minnesota - one of my favorite things in the Autumn is when the leaves fall and change colours. It is Autumn here in Australia, right now. The trees in Brisbane don't really change much, which is a pitty. But in other areas I guess the leaves do change. Johan knew this and noticed something before I even did. He noticed that there were some trees that were changing colours. He handed me two beautiful red leaves. The red leaves are my favorite and I pressed them in my journal! My first red Australian leaves!
It was a lovely Autumn day. We went and sat at a picnic table under some trees and listened to natures music.
We had a lovely time in Toowoomba for the weekend and the writer's workshop. I wish we would have had more time in Toowoomba because there were definitely more things to see. Different day hikes and countless other views to be enjoyed.
To find out more about Toowoomba, check out this webiste. It is definitely a lovely area. I will most definitely go back and check out Toowoomba again soon! www.toowoomba.org/
Check out my personal blog for more information and details on different areas of my journey in Australia.