Within the hills and valleys of Rockhampton, Australia, there is limited digital reception, which meant that there were no toys to play with, but who needed them when surrounding the small camp lies a scenic masterpiece of nature for those who bothered to appreciate, as well as an approaching high-key event to worry about?
The land was neither barren nor dull. In the far distance lay stoic-looking mountains draped in a vast green expanse of trees. Within sight, a field of overgrown vegetation, decomposing carcasses of dead-falls and an unusual abundance of trees.
It was immensely pleasurable to witness the leaves on the trees, which had turned a lighter shade of brown in the dry summer, rustle as a cool breeze caressed the Earth, bringing disturbance to the otherwise serene ambiance, sending flies and other insects fluttering in disarray and the weeds swaying wildly.
In the day, clouds hang low in the sky, layering like rosettes of meringue, their silver-lining illuminated by warm rays of sunlight, bringing forth false hopes of a clear day when in mere hours, the grey clouds would gather and glacial winds would rise.
At night, the skies are pristine, like a quiet lake in the deserted forest, giving way to one of the most magnificent yet thoroughly under-appreciated views: The majestic array of stars, glimmering brightly in their respective constellations or in arbitrary order, creates a subtle ephemeral joy whenever a star traverses the clear skies.
Of course, the battalion was not entirely liberated from the vindictiveness of the cutthroat society. Behind the veneer of all the seemingly simplistic life of mild regimentation and physical training, lay the ironically quiet and vicious battle of politics. Acrimony, sarcasm, absurdity and animosity reverberated around the camp, which often resulted in incessant disagreements and superfluous feuds among those who bothered to care, creating an unruly dichotomy above all.
For so long, we have allowed our minds to be poisoned and polluted by a putrid obsession for materialistic wealth and social imaging as we thrive for our own self-worth and popularity.
Our nonchalance has led us to be oblivious to the minor things, like the rainbow that stretches across the sky after a dull rain or the shooting star that glides under the moonless night. Our obsession with perfection has lead us to believe that “praise” equates “progress”, which eventually construct a pathetic shallowness that pervades deep within us, preventing genuine progress that we yearn to achieve. Our desire to uncover trends has led us to look around to find meaning in everything that happens although more often than not, we end up getting disappointed. Then again, so what if we have the answers to the problems, would they help?
We have forgotten that:
There is life with simplicity.
There is bliss with the appreciation of the little things.
There is peace in letting go.