At Easter, my whole church packs up and goes on retreat in the jarrah forest outside Perth. The mornings are spent in organised Easter worship (according to the day) and the afternoons are free and unstructured (this year I sewed my Sencha blouse). Meals are fantastic and everyone takes part in the preparation, cooking and clean-up.
It is a time of sadness, joy amd reflection, all in the company of good people.
The forest is beautiful. Jarrah is a dense, hardwood found in the southwest of Western Australia, in the past it was used extensively as a building product, but has been affected severely by a northern hemisphere tree disease (called “dieback” here, it is phytophthera).
The forest our camp is in, was extensively logged in the past, but is now protected and although subjected to many feral plants (fig, privet, blackberry etc), is still very beautiful (The path up to the bush chapel, near the creek are a lot of weeds, you may see the fig tree on the right).
I am writing this on my third day back at work, dreaming about being on holidays again!