Australia · blessings · Byron Bay · daughter · gratitude

Byron Bay Lighthouse

The Byron Bay Lighthouse.
The Byron Bay Lighthouse.

“Every man should be born again on the first day of January. Start with a fresh page. Take up one hole more in the buckle if necessary, or let down one, according to circumstances; but on the first of January let every man gird himself once more, with his face to the front, and take no interest in the things that were and are passed.” ~ Henry Ward Beecher.

The rocky cliffs heading down to the sea, but where are the mountain goats?
The rocky cliffs heading down to the sea, but where are the mountain goats?

I came across the quote by Henry Ward Beecher recently and thought it to be very sound advice, especially so if you wish to forget anything that has happened in your past life that has caused you pain.

The old lighthouse keepers house, now a museum.
The old lighthouse keepers house, now a museum.

Well, as much as I wish to follow Henry’s advice, I’m not ready to do so yet, as I have something wonderful to share with you all today, and it happened last year! But do note that I used the word “wonderful”, it was an exciting day at the time and I’m excited to be sharing the event with you now.

Rooms now display old photos and information of interest from the days of old.
Rooms now display old photos and information of interest from the days of old.

My baby girl Emma and I love browsing around markets, especially markets selling alternate, but good quality wares. We had heard a whisper that the market at Bangalow, about three-quarters of an hour drive south and held on the last Sunday of each month was such a market.

Two Estuary Cod fish.....No, wait, isn't that Emma?!
Two Estuary Cod fish…..No, wait, isn’t that Emma?!

I’ll have to write another post about the market itself, as to combine two destinations into one story would be way too long, as Emma and I met a couple of interesting characters at the markets, whose stories are worthy of sharing.

Can you imagine waking up to this view at your front door every day? That's what the lighthouse keeper used to do!
Can you imagine waking up to this view at your front door every day? That’s what the lighthouse keeper used to do!

Today is the story of the lighthouse, at Byron Bay, situated on the eastern-most point of Australia and just a hop, skip and a jump from Bangalow, where Emma and I went to have lunch after we had finished the rounds of the market.

Some info for those of you who like to know the actual factuals....
Some info for those of you who like to know the actual factuals….

The weather of the day was warm, but not the ridiculously unbearable humidity that we sometimes suffer through during the warmer months here. The sun blazed away in the blue sky and all was well with the world.

The room just nside the downstairs of the lighthouse, where people can wait, "patiently!" for the next tour to the top....  :)
The room just inside the downstairs of the lighthouse, where people can wait, “patiently!” for the next tour to the top…. 🙂

Since my childhood days I have visited the lighthouse at Byron Bay. It’s a beautiful area and the point where the lighthouse is located holds magic in the air. There used to be wild mountain goats grazing on the steep inclines leading up to the lighthouse but I didn’t see any the day Emma and I were there. I think Emma thought I’d gone a bit potty when I told her to look out for the mountain goats! Sadly, we didn’t see any.

More actual factuals, this sweet little building was built in 1901. In the displays they even have the original plans of the two buildings.
More actual factuals, this sweet little building was built in 1901. In the displays they even have the original plans of the two buildings.

Every time I have been to the lighthouse I have wanted to go inside. I became even more fascinated by the interior’s of lighthouses during the days when my children were young and loved watching a TV show called “Round the Twist”, based on books written by Australian author Paul Jennings, where the Twist family lived in a lighthouse. Strange events took place in and around the lighthouse, with a magical and sometimes supernatural slant, all of which had me riveted to the TV set as firmly as my children were, to watch the show.

And this would be the door to the inner sanctum, the door I have dreamed about walking through, closed.
And this would be the door to the inner sanctum, the door I have dreamed about walking through, closed.

The Byron Bay lighthouse has never, not once, in all the years I have visited, been open to the public, but lo and behold, on this fine Sunday afternoon when Emma and I arrived there, it was open! Oh joy of joys, I could finally go into the lighthouse!

But wait, today they will open this door! Things are looking up, my friends!
Today they will open this door! Things are looking up, my friends!

“All who joy would win must share it. Happiness is a twin.” ~ Lord Byron quote ~ 1788-1824.

Is this really happening? Yes it is, I'm inside the lighthouse!
Is this really happening? Yes it is, I’m inside the lighthouse!

But wait, it gets even better….one of the friendly volunteers asked if we would like to go on the next tour, to the top of the lighthouse! Would I what!! I must admit that I think I may have heard a slight groan from Emma, when she found out that to be on the next tour, we would have to wait for nearly an hour. Hadn’t I waited for her to finish her ballet classes for eight whole years? Hadn’t I ferried her to friends houses until she was old enough to drive herself? Hadn’t I done so with barely a single complaint uttered? Now it was my turn for some fun; I made her wait. There were no further groans.

I admired and photographed it all, every single nut and bolt I could see. Okay, maybe I missed one or two nuts and bolts, but wow! :)
I admired and photographed it all, every single nut and bolt I could see. Okay, maybe I missed one or two nuts and bolts, but wow! 🙂

I should have counted the stairs as we climbed the course to the top, with me leading the way, but I didn’t. My camera was too busy clicking away at every turn in the stairs, at every flat platform, at every window, at every nut and bolt in the wall. I had waited for this day for a lifetime and I didn’t want to miss a single detail. It didn’t disappoint.

Here lies all of the gadgemetry to project the beams of the light, right up at the very top of the inner sanctum..
Here lies all the gadgemetry to project the beams of the light, right up at the very top of the inner sanctum..

“Roll on, deep and dark blue ocean, roll. Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain. Man marks the earth with ruin, but his control stops at the shore.” ~ Lord Byron ~ 1788-1824.

Here stands "Emma the Brave" casually posing for a photograph on the lighthouse balcony, as my legs go to jelly.
Here stands “Emma the Brave” casually posing for a photograph on the lighthouse balcony, as my legs go to jelly.

The top of the lighthouse was really fascinating and our friendly guide knew all the ins-and-outs of every specific mathematical detail there was to know about the structure of this fabulous creation, all very interesting on the day, however I’ve forgotten most of what she told us. I was there for the feel of the building, the magic of the area, the stories of the lighthouse keepers, the sounds of the ocean and the joy of the people who shared the tour to the top with us. Those feelings remain.

Realising that I couldn't live in the lighthouse, we headed down. Such opportunities must remain with the fictitional characters in children's TV shows.
Realising that I couldn’t live in the lighthouse, we headed down. Such opportunities must remain with the fictional characters in children’s TV shows.

At the very top, I wimped out. I go jelly legged at heights and as much a I would have loved to have gone out onto the very narrow balcony surrounding the top edge of the lighthouse, I declined the offer. Well, I did venture out onto the balcony for two seconds, whilst holding the door and not looking directly down, and I even considered letting go of the door and walking a few steps along the balcony….it ended at mere consideration and I stayed inside. Maybe next time.

"Hello down there!" This young man was chastised by his father for holding up the trafic. I assured him that I didn't mind and that I had taken his photo. :)
“Hello down there!” This young man was chastised by his father for holding up the traffic. I assured him that I didn’t mind and that I had taken his photo. 🙂

And there will be a next time, Emma and I have decided, and we will be taking my other daughter with us when we go. This much magic needs to be shared. 🙂

And the journey down the stairs continues. I didn't count the stairs on the way down either....
And the journey down the stairs continues. I didn’t count the stairs on the way down either….and my legs again turned to jelly when I learned over the balustrade to take this photo!

“Be thou the rainbow in the storms of life. The evening beam that smiles the clouds away, and tints tomorrow with prophetic ray.” ~ Lord Byron ~ 1788-1824.

The Beaming Lighthouse.
The Beaming Byron Bay Lighthouse.
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15 thoughts on “Byron Bay Lighthouse

  1. Next trip to the coast, I shall try – again – a trip up those stairs. The last couple of times, I just couldn’t do it – the stairs were too steep, too open, too much like edges.

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    1. While I waited just inside the door at the top, taking photos, a late arrival climbed the stairs and sat on the top stair for a moment to catch her breath. She asked if I would be going outside and I told her no, I wasn’t good with heights and should really try harder as I was really just a sook. She insisted that I wasn’t, if I’m afraid of heights, then those around me must accept it, she insisted, and I thought, what a wise and kind lady. Do it in your own time Carol, but only if you really want to. xx

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  2. I really enjoyed exploring the lighthouse with you and Emma Joanne. I wish I could escape to your warm shores as this early, bitter winter already seems too long and it has barely begun.

    Are your lighthouses generally all white ? I “think” ours tend to be red and white.

    So glad you got to go inside. Love the photos of the spiral staircase. I share your “jelly legs”.

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    1. I think they are predominately white Sybil, the lighthouses I have visited are, at least. You are having unusually cold weather so far this year, we are hearing about it on the weather news over here. Our heat wave seems to have ended, so fingers crossed, your temperatures may climb a little towards your average before too long.

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  3. What a beautiful lighthouse! So white and sparkling against the bright blue sky… I love the pictures you took inside – anything so magical is worth waiting an hour (or more) for. I’m scratching my head and trying to remember if I’ve ever been inside a lighthouse – don’t think so. What a great experience to share with your daughter.

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    1. It was amazing Barbara, an opportunity I wasn’t about to miss and I’m sure I would have waited longer to go inside if need be! I’m really looking forward to going back again another day and trying to go out onto the balcony at the top again! If you ever have the opportunity you should tour the inside of a lighthouse yourself, with Tim. I’m sure you would both love the experience. 🙂

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    1. My son, who has visited the USA, says that many aspects of our two countries are very much the same, yet there are also many differences. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to visit in person? *sigh* A lovely dream, maybe one day. 🙂

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  4. I vote for the picture of Emma with the fish. That is priceless! The view down the spiral staircase is great, too. What fun you both seemed to have. There is something special about those lighthouses. Also, I have a spiritual friend who is from the Byron Bay area. Her name is Glenda.

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    1. It was an impromptu moment Kathy and I loved that she did it! That’s my Emma, always expect the unexpected from her. 🙂

      Is Glenda a blogger Kathy? The Byron Bay area attracts some very spiritual and alternate people; people who are looking for an alternative lifestyle to that in the cities and built-up towns. I can see why they choose to live there, as it is the most scenic area. 🙂

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