look behind us and saw the holiday makers shimmer and disappear with the heat
coming off the sand.
Every now and then one of the Pelicans would swoop down in front of the car and fly
just ahead of us. “Amazing”, is all I kept saying under my breath. Dad heard me and
replied with his trademark loving smile and “that’s nature for you my boy”. It looked like
he was actually following them.
We neared the point and both Pelicans swooped down in front of the car veered off to
the left up and over the dense vegetation. Dad slowed the Jeep down and turned closer
to the tree line. From what I could see there was no possible way to get into the trees, it
was just too dense. And then I saw it, a small dark opening, so well hidden that if you
were not on the lookout you would never have seen it. Dad eased the Jeep into the gap
which was just barely big enough, I could hear the branches and leaves scraping the
body. In front of us was not the familiar trail of tyre marks you would expect to see but
instead a padded pathway of fallen leaves, so thick that as the car moved it made very
little sound. The air was cool and the trees completely grew into one another blocking
most of the sky and sun. We had moved from the beach into a forest.
The going was bumpy and uneven, but comfortable enough because of all the leaves.
We drove deeper and deeper into the forest, it certainly did not seem this big from
where we stood on the beach. We navigated through dense bush and in some cases
around the base of huge tree trunks and I swear we even went through an opening of
the root of a tree! It was starting to feel very unreal.
Dad came to a stop in a clearing somewhere deep in the forest. I was actually quite keen
to get out of the car to see if I could hear the ocean still. He switched the car off and
stopped me with a hand on my shoulder just as I was about to open the door. He took