Hey Jupiter is a small perzine that I make and give to people for free. You can get a physical copy from Sticky Institute or ask for one via email/twitter/when you see me next.
A lot of people I know really hate New Year’s Eve and seem to shit on it a lot around this time of year. And I totally get it, there’s so much pressure to have the best time everrrr and to figure out a plan to fix everything that went wrong in your life the year before, even if most of that stuff happened because of things you have no control over. Personally, I always feel pretty ambivalent about the whole thing, I don’t think it’s the worst thing ever but the last few years I’ve been quite glad to not be in Melbourne, and thus able to avoid the painful decision of ‘how to celebrate’ and all the weird vibes and expectations that come along with that. I read in one of Patti Smith’s memories (I’m 99% sure it was Just Kids) that you should do on New Year’s Day what you’d like to be doing for the rest of that year, and I like this idea a lot more than getting tanked the night before and feeling super hungover and generally shit for all of NYD (no judgement if this is you, though, cos I’ve definitely been there, and will probably do so again before I’m dead). So, with this in mind, I’m not going to write about what I did on NYE, and stick to what I’m doing today instead.
Today Kyle and I got up pretty early and went for a walk along the beach to Coila Lake. We did this walk last year and enjoyed it so much we decided to make it kind of a tradition. It’s kind of nice to be up really early on New Year’s Day because there’s hardly any other people around, even more so in a country town like Tuross Head, except for people out walking their dogs, who are always great people to run into. The track goes along the coast and above this private beach that’s blocked off by big rocks either side and there’s a sign that marks it as a whale graveyard. According to the sign a whale beached itself there, and when the locals couldn’t save it they buried it under a big mound of dirt that’s all covered in grass now and looks like a big grassy hill. I was sad about the whale but it gave me a strange thrill to think that there were whale bones buried under such a normal looking piece of land. I love spooky shit like that, especially in small towns. Yesterday, while Kyle and my friend Aidan and I were driving to visit Tilba we passed this old abandoned cheese factory, called the ‘Big Cheese.’ The Big Cheese was actually just a rusty yellow silo with the words ‘Big Cheese’ written on it, but next to it there was this old abandoned ice creamery, with rusty gates and letters falling off the signs and everything. You could peer through the windows and everything was all dank and dirty inside, but for some reason all of their drinking glasses were still there, lined up in neat rows, and we could see two bottles of scotch stashed under where the old till would’ve been. It had a total abandoned theme park vibe, or the kind of place where local underage teens might come to get drunk and possibly murdered.
There are a few spooky places around this part of the world, another is the salt marshes around Coila Lake. Because of all the salt in the salt marshes, all the trees around the boardwalk have died off, but their white tree skeletons are still there. A lot of bright birds like to perch in the branches though, like rosellas, and blue wrens, and rainbow lorikeets. There were quite a few Ibis last year, but I didn’t see any today, which bums me out a bit.
Another thing that makes the salt marshes kind of spooky-beautiful but also kind of gross is that in some parts you get this huge waft of sulphur come through when the wind blows through the marshes, and it gives the whole place this kind of witchy, hellish fire and brimstone feel. It’s also another reason that I’m glad I didn’t get drunk last night, because that smell would’ve totally made me throw up. I think that maybe the salt marsh is my favourite place in Tuross because even though it looks pretty dead, when you look closer you can see it’s very much a living breathing ecosystem. When we stopped walking for a bit I looked over the boardwalk railing and could see a bunch of tadpoles swimming together in some pretty dank looking water. I watched them for a while, and thought that I should be less like one of those tadpoles, chasing all the others around, trying to keep up, and be more like a frog, just sitting on a warm rock doing it’s own thing, hanging out with other frogs if and when it wants to. I’m reading this book called ‘Goodwood’ by Holly Throsby at the moment, and yesterday I found this line that really jumped out at me; “Growing up’s figuring out what makes you happy, Jean. Not what you think might, or what you think should, but what actually does.” This is the kind of think I need to tattooed on my eyelids or something.
So today I’ve already done some of those things that make me happy, like walking with Kyle, and drinking tea, and chatting about nothing with family, and writing, and later I’ll probably do some more things, like going for a swim in the ocean, and writing some more, and drinking a gin and tonic and eating an ice cream maybe. It’s already been a good day, so I hope that means it’ll be a good year.