I always wonder about how we all observe the world and how our minds filter our surroundings differently from each other. Many people visit a place and never go back believing that because they had visited, they must have seen it all. I’ve been visiting this rock platform at Ben Buckler for years and each the time I go there I see something new I have not seen before. Some of the new discoveries are so extraordinary, they blow my mind.
This place is located at the north side of Bondi Beach and it’s covered by many interesting rock pools, unique patterns craved by the ocean into the soft sandstone and strange-looking boulders in the shadow of the three stories high cliff wall. It’s one of the most interesting places on the coast in Sydney.
Although this place is beautiful, it could be quite dangerous and extra caution is required before you get too close to the water.
Just like all similarly looking rock platforms it is exposed to large waves that rush through its surface and have the power to wash anyone away.
On this afternoon, a big storm rolled over Sydney and it was raining heavily so I didn’t expect anything interesting to happen although I still drove to the beach when I saw a tiny bright clearing in the dark cloud cover over the horizon. Expecting a rainbow to appear, I walked to my typical spot and hid under a rock ledge waiting for the rain to stop. Just before the sun started to set the rain had also stopped and my surroundings started their transformation into an apocalyptic scene of colossal radiance.
At that moment, I realized, horrified that the swell was too big to shoot my favourite rock pool so I started running up and down looking for some interesting composition in this unique scene. After a few minutes, I climbed through a large rock. In my amazement a new area, that I had never seen before appeared in front of me with dozens of new opportunities to shoot.
By the time I set up my camera the sky was on fire and I couldn’t believe that what was happening was real. It looked like if the whole ocean caught on fire and this wildfire was burning through the clouds.
Until this day the memory of this afternoon makes me speechless. I still wonder how it was possible that I kept overseeing this place before for such a long time.