Writing for pleasure to showcase the best Australia has on offer.
Published April 16th 2014
Are you a shell collector?
When I first came to live in Brisbane some 10 years ago, I found The Redlands had all I wanted on offer. Within driving distances there were suburbs with ocean views and beaches to walk upon, to swim or to partake in numerous water sports and there were other suburbs surrounded by nature strips and bushland. I was even lucky enough to find a mother Koala and baby in the gum tree outside by back fence one New Year's Day.
Large shopping centres provide choice of purchase and one really doesn't need to leave this City if it isn't necessary.
So, where to visit first? True to good Aussie tradition, I found the locals had nick-names for nearly every suburb as they added character and favouritism to their local areas. I was told there were good shopping centres and cinemas at Cap-A-Laba and Vicki and Wello & Cleveland had great beaches for fishing and water sports. But beware; Thornside and Thornlands are at opposite ends of the City so if you ended up in one when you should have gone to the other, then that really was a "thorn in your side". And "Alex", well he was somewhere in between.
I certainly don't get lost as much as I used to and knowing the correct names of the suburbs and their locality certainly has made things easier.
Taking a drive recently on a spare Sunday I came across a little shop in Queen Street Cleveland that I had not seen before. Named "House of Shells" proprietor Roger Kellow told me he is semi-retired and only recently opened this shop. He has a magnificent range of shells in all different sizes for sale and he also buys shell collections. He even has a range of shells for the craft person and many gifts or ideas to create your own.
Roger provides the service of Marine Taxidermy and had a very large crab in his showcase waiting for a keen buyer to take it home. So if you have a pet marine animal and couldn't bear to see him buried after death, Roger is your man to keep 'Toby' in your home forever.
There are conflicting reports as to the naming of Cleveland; it was either named in 1770 by Captain James Cook in honour of John Cleveland, the Secretary of the Admiralty around the time, or by surveyors in the 1840s, in honour of William Vane, 1st Duke of Cleveland. However, whoever named it, the Cleveland Point is a great place to eat, fish, have a barbeque or just relax with family and friends.
A large playground for children is featured in the middle of the ring road way and the size of the concrete turtle in the sandpit nearly made me want to jump in the sand to play as well. Whilst there, you can also check out the Cleveland Lighthouse and its history.
Large turtle in children's playground and sand pit, Cleveland Point
Leaving Cleveland, I headed to Wello (Wellington Point) which was named by Surveyors Robert Dixon and James Warner in 1842 after the Duke of Wellington who led the army of the United Kingdom in the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.
I enjoyed a leisurely walk along the foreshore and stopped to watch the fishermen either bringing their boats in or taking them out for a day on the water. It can be quite mesmerising and the hours past quite easily. It is such a relaxing feeling being by the water and obviously many others felt as I did as we all sat watching the jet skis and boats for hours. Families also headed out along the jetty with rod and tackle to hopefully score a feed for their supper.
I was amazed to see that both Wellington Point and Cleveland had just as many boat trailers parked in their parking lots. Each boatie has their favourite spot, I'm sure and it made me realise just how well-liked this relaxed Aussie pastime has become.
One certainly doesn't have to travel far to enjoy the fresh sea air, the beach and a good feed by the water. And what makes it even better, is that you return home totally relaxed.
Hi; Susan, thank you for your comments, i live in Victoria Point, & i collect shells, & did not know that there was a shell shop in Cleveland, i will get in touch with Rodger & see if he has a special shell that i am chasing, Regards, Darrell.