Friday, November 15, 2013

On, Under and Across the Southport Bridge

Dilemma faced me when I reached the bridge connecting Southport's parkland and The Spit. Though seemingly trivial, even mundane, it's these decisions that make a visit special because one doesn't exactly plan something like crossing a bridge on foot. I was of course curious. Don't you ever wonder what's on the other side? Of a rainbow? Of an ocean? Of a bridge? There was always the romantic notion, where travelers are concerned, that there could be a "pot of gold" - or "greener pastures"? And isn't it better to find out for yourself?

The other side is, of course, nothing but a sand bar extending from the shore, i.e. a "spit".  The terminology is almost unheard of in American English, so finding its usage on a parcel of sandy shoal makes it even more interesting. From there stood several high rise buildings that look out into the blue Pacific Ocean. The Spit provides a demarcation between Broadwater and the sea. I somehow felt the need to land my foot on the other side. It's a silly checklist, but there it is.

From the parkland of Southport, I decided to checkout what's under the bridge. The walls were littered with colorful murals of the inherent fauna found in the area.

There's a pedestrian lane under the bridge that goes to the other side (where the malls are located). The quality of sand is amazing; fine white powdery sand line the shore, something that the island of, say, Mactan would turn green over. You see, most resorts in the Cebuano island have artificial inlays of white sand. Here, they spill over in Queensland's shores.

The water ways were moderately busy. I could see amphibian vehicles (SuperDuck, AquaDuck, etc.) traveling on the water. These didn't seem to have docking stations anywhere from my view.

So - I crossed the bridge on foot. Not the searingly hot weather could stop me from doing so. I wasn't sure how long it took me. But it was a joy to feel the breeze coming from the Nerang River. Upon reaching the other side, I noticed the construction of a Light Rail Transit (LRT) expected to be operational in 2014. With 14 trams, 16 stations over a 13 kilometer stretch, this train system would radically change the way tourists roam the Gold Coast. If I haven't mentioned it yet, going around this part of the world isn't as tourist-friendly as thought because traveling requires renting a car or taking the taxi which is expensive! Surely, Queensland isn't a pauper's paradise.

He's feeding a school of fish.
From the other side, I could see the parkland, and the buildings that constitute the corporate centers - and the mall. I chanced on an amphibian vehicle as it drove and dove into the waters. Koreans and Japanese nationals were enjoying their river cruise. The money they burn. I tried to bask in the warmth of the sun, but at some point, it was just too harsh to enjoy. More importantly, I've stepped on the land they call The Spit, and though I didn't exactly get reacquainted with the Pacific Ocean this time, I was contented.

Looking at the bridge was like receiving an invisible trophy. I've succeeded to cross THAT long bridge and I was where I wanted to be. Not quite for Ripley's, but it was a personal milestone. Crossing bridges in Australia.

My next minor problem was, I knew I had to get right back to the other side to check out the city center and the Australia Fair Shopping Mall. It was going to be a longer walk.

This is the Eye in the Sky!

Murals on the wall.

I had to walk that bridge?

Take notice of the quality of sand.

Southport's The Spit. 

Koreans and Japanese tourists.

SuperDuck, an amphibian tourist vehicle.

The bridge connecting Southport and The Spit.

I made it to the other side.

The way towards the shore.

Some 20 minutes later, the amphibian is back. That was a fast ride.

Gave myself a pat for crossing the bridge from the park (arrow) to the other side.

Fellow tourists stop by the shore to enjoy the view. They left after 10 minutes.

It is a Lonely Planet, isn't it? ;)

No comments: