Peter’s Blog

I need to place on record my feeling that overwhelmingly throughout my life, my contact with my fellow men, women and children has been a total delight.
It is a recurring pleasure which I experience each day and is among the precious things which makes my life rewarding and worth living, not least because moments of the keenest enjoyment can as readily occur with a complete stranger as with family and friends.



The Film Diary entries are selected items from the diary I keep whenever I film. To check location references, click on ‘Tamborine Mountain’ on the top information bar then hit the ‘Tamborine Mountain’ button on the map.

The Brisbane Line was the e-bulletin of the now defunct Brisbane Institute, to which I contributed the articles featured, between 2006 and 2012.

Not The Brisbane Line contains my other essays from 2005 to the present.


A cherished dream, my book   One small place on earth …  discovering biodiversity where you are,   self-published in August 2019, has been long in the making. Jan Watson created its design template nine years ago. The idea of doing a book seems to have occurred during my stay with Clive Tempest, the website’s first architect, when I was visiting the UK in 2006. By the time Steve Guttormsen and I began sustained work on the book in 2017, much of which I had already written, the imperative was to create a hard copy version of a project whose content is otherwise entirely digital.


People may wonder why there is little mention of climate change – global warming on my website. There are two related reasons. Firstly, if former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s 2007 remark that climate change is the “great moral, environmental and economic challenge of our age” is true, we have not acted accordingly before or since. Rudd’s statement is only true if we collectively live as if it is true, Rudd included. Instead, our politics has wasted decades favouring business as usual, and a global economy excessively dependent on fossil fuels – in the wilful absence of a politics intent on achieving a low carbon economy. Secondly, although it is open to individuals to strive to live the truth of Rudd’s remarks, the vast majority of people, myself included, do not. I salute those who do. The precautionary principle alone makes me regard climate change as a current planetary crisis, but because I have only marginally changed the way I live, and still wish to fly, I am not inclined to pontificate on the subject.


My Travels / 16.10.2023

I flew to Longreach on October 7 prior to my road trip with Simon and Nicole. I was delighted to see a pair of kangaroos grazing on the neighbour’s lawn when I arrived at their house, something I hadn’t seen before. The itinerary included Blackall, Charleville, Tambo, Quilpie, Eromanga and Jundah. Most of the tour was in far southwest Queensland. The terrain from Tambo to Welford National Park near Jundah was all new to me, though there is a good deal more country in the State, further south and west. The grass was still long in the paddocks and we saw cattle and a few sheep enroute, but the ground is drying out and el nino has taken hold. The rivers still had quite a lot of water in them, but the water courses we traversed were overwhelmingly dry. Compared with my last visit in late March, there was plenty of road kill, a sure sign that food beyond the road verges, is more difficult to obtain for kangaroos and emus.

This was the first time in five or six visits to Simon & Nicole, that it hasn’t rained in Longreach. I relished the near 40° heat.  On the… Read Complete Text


My Travels / 27.06.2023

On reflection, I should have done this trip ten years ago, yet I simply didn’t want to go to the USA, and even now, I had no wish to travel there other than to see some of its legendary wild places. But with time running out and United Airlines having recently introduced a non-stop service between San Francisco and Brisbane, I set aside my aversion to the USA’s crazy politics, gun violence and tipping as a cynical excuse for not paying people properly, and, with muted enthusiasm, booked my journey. I departed on June 9 and returned on June 27. I became apprehensive about whether I would manage the hiking tour and how much money I would need for tips, so much so that on the morning of my departure, I acquired a severe pain in my left hip which made ascending the stairs difficult and unpleasant. My immediate thought was whether I would have to abandon the trip before it began. My next thought was to wonder if the pain was muscular or skeletal. Fortunately, it abated as the day wore on, which encouraged me to undertake the overnight flight.


My ambivalence about travelling… Read Complete Text


Film Diary / 11.05.2023

A bit of a fallen twig, some 15 to 18 cm long, with a tiny fungus attached to it, caught my on this morning’s walk. It was lying on some roadside grass. I ended up with three out of nine photos for my image library. It is quite a while since I last photographed a fungus and contacted Nigel Fechner, a noted mycologist. I asked him to hopefully shed some light on what I have found.


My Travels / 08.05.2023

I spent a fair amount of time at my travel agent’s with Jodie, who kindly undertook to deal with the entry requirements for my USA trip, plus completing the ‘good to go’ form for the tour operator. It emerged that I needed to collect my laptop from home because the entry application had to come from my email address. Jodie was also required to enter details of my UK passport, though I will be using my Australian passport for the journey. I would have been a wreck if I had to complete the application without help and as it was, the toing and froing while I sat with Jodie, strung me out. After I got home, a ‘Status Change’ email from the Electronic System for Travel Authorization arrived, which I forwarded to Jodie. She phoned me a little later to tell me that she had accessed the authorization document, which she printed and added to the documents which are due to be handed over once all the vouchers arrive.


My Travels / 21.04.2023

Steve and Paulina left for Thailand on April 20. The phone he ordered on 18.4.23 on Amazon, is from the UK. I paid an extra $19.00 for expedited delivery on May 22 or 23 instead of on May 26. On 19.4.23 an email from Amazon confirmed that the phone had been dispatched with arrival due on May 22 or 23. Given that it was in the hands of a courier, the quoted arrival dates made no sense. Today, there was a knock on the door at about noon. The delivery driver handed me a package, which, when opened, contained the phone. Steve and Paulina will be back on the first weekend in May.



My Travels / 11.04.2023

I saw Gina in her office and paid for my USA tour. The balance of the trip covering a day tour, transfers by car and hotel accommodation is due on May 5, when I will complete my visa application with Gina’s help. A few weeks ago, I found out that mobile phone providers in the US no longer service 3G phones, unlike providers here and in Europe. I feared that I might now have to buy a smart phone, then realised that I could just buy a simple 4G phone. Checking what is available, I opted for a Nokia flip phone and asked Steve for help in obtaining it. The latest model doesn’t appear to be available here. Ideally, I would like to get the phone at the beginning of May.