What a wonderful bird is the Pelican

Allison Tait blog
Posted on April 2, 2012

Yesterday, on the lo-o-ongest day ever (what is it about turning the clocks back after daylight savings that makes the day last for 48 hours?), as the air in the house grew ever-more toxic and my tired little boys ran in circles of ever-diminishing size, we packed them into the car and drove out into the fresh air.

To a tiny town, with a park and a bike track and an ice-cream shop. Where the fishing boats come in to the wooden pier and the catch is unloaded in bright blue trays full of ice. Where people sit about, with not much on their minds beyond tidal changes and whether the fish are biting.

We watched men in singlets and thongs wash down huge, gleaming boats called ‘Wideload’ and ‘Mama’s Cookin’. Mr8 tried the gears on his bike for the first time – ‘Mum, it’s like wearing flippers when I swim’. Mr5 came to a dead halt every time a bike came in the opposite direction, which made it much easier for me to keep up with him.

And we sat on the rocks among the seagulls, ate lemon iceblocks and watched the patrols of pelicans gobble up dinner in their huge beaks, marvelling at the blue/black colour of their legs. They drifted along and then, suddenly, rose as one, as if by telepathic signal, and flew overhead, casting ‘hunormous’ (Mr5’s favourite word for general bigness’) shadows on our out-stretched legs.

All that, and it was still only 3.30pm when a storm drove us back to the car to go home.


  1. Alison P

    This was lovely.

  2. Kirsten

    Everyone always says cheerfully (before they have kids), ‘you get an extra hour’s sleep!’ Now, it’s the dread of having to gradually adjust the bodyclocks of a baby and a toddler. This time, it’s weird, but both kids have been sick and had bad nights, and the morning wakeup has been fine! Anyway, a lovely piece of writing, capturing that stillness of sitting and observing. Great!

  3. Christine Powless

    Love watching pelicans in synchronized sky dances. Beautiful ! …and yes I can spend hours watching.

  4. River

    “A tiny town……where people sit about with not much on their minds…”
    Sounds like my kind of town.

  5. The Hungry Mum

    Feel like I was there. Beautiful writing. And I agree – Longest.Day.Ever.

  6. Ms_MotorbikeNut

    Sounds like you all had fun, our family will be hopefully having a similar one in 2 weeks time or in maybe towards the end of April, as we live in QLD & it still feels like summer up here 🙂

    (((( Hugs )))) XXXX Kisses XXXX

  7. Maxabella

    I love days like that. Looking back, our entire Summer holidays seemed to be days like these. x

  8. At Number 32

    I HATE turning the clocks back…..wish daylight savings can be here all year…..good to see your out appreciating men in their thongs and stubbies 🙂

  9. therhythmmethod

    I completely agree: daylight savings change over is definitely the longest day ever. Yours ended much better than ours … I’m going to file it under “bedtime from hell”.

  10. Alison

    His beak can hold more than his belly can! We call them pecalins around here (they are friends with the ephalunts). Sounds like a beautiful afternoon. Clearly this is one of the drawbacks of daylight savings that keeps my home state avoiding such a progressive idea at all costs.

  11. Jodie Ansted

    Ah, bliss. Love those easy, last minute, not-much-to-them outings. ‘Tis true that the simple things in life are often the best.

    We did a similar trip to Freshwater Beach. Lov-e-ly.


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