19 Dec 2018 20 YEARS AGO TODAY
Exactly twenty years ago, I wrote the first entry in my Film Diary. It was about filming the sunrise over the Pacific Ocean. The project’s duration didn’t figure in my thoughts at the time. One thing I could not have predicted was that the 20th anniversary coincided with a scheduled night walk. Before we set out, we – Hugh, Jaap, Mark, Robyn, Lumart, Karen and me – raised a glass of Veuve Clicquot to the health of the project, which I want to keep going as long as I can, and exchanged heartfelt words and thoughts.
At Lumart’s suggestion, after a long absence and two weather delays, we were at Witches Falls National Park. Paradoxically, recent walks have been both shorter and longer than ever. Shorter in distance covered, longer in time filming. This may have been the shortest yet. The track into the park comprises a level path which extends more than a kilometre before the descent to the shelf land which is its core. It was 10 o’clock when we turned back towards the car park and we were a fair distance from the first steps downhill. Even then, we found two frogs I had never filmed, so by the time I packed up to head home it was nearly 10.45 pm.
I couldn’t envisage a more fitting 20th anniversary tribute than tonight’s filming. My subjects were a beautiful green stick insect positioned at an ideal angle – which could have been a new species for the project, a green beetle, a moulting raspy cricket and the two frogs.