This long weekend we are on a road trip in regional New South Wales to talk with First Nations people about their perspectives on water planning for the Murray Darling Basin.
Our job is to listen, document and write up their recommendations for how we save a river system in serious trouble after two short centuries.
Listening to the intergenerational experience across many thousands of years of abundant healthy lives, lived in harmony with nature.
On the way we slept in our swag by the river, and watched transfixed as shooting stars that exploded millennia ago caught our gaze.
We woke to sun sparkling on water where not so long ago, grandmothers could dive to the bottom in crystal clear water to harvest mussels and catch crayfish.
Taking only enough to feed the family, and no more.
As we rolled our swag the earth was warm where our bodies had been held by earth that sustains us.
It rides out our innovations, exploration and business ventures.
What struck me is the need to come back into balance.
To a place where we think about future generations before we endanger our productive planet or risk extinction, enable global warming, climate change, species eradication, and threaten the long term food and water security of generations to come.
I dream of a people who slow down long enough to consider our collective well being as communities sharing a blue planet.
Where fossil fuels are left in the ground and we use our smarts to explore renewable technologies that are efficient, profitable and rewards are shared with all.
Where oceans are protected to be the lungs of our earth as the delicate balance commands, and we protect, innovate and grow sustainable fishing and farming practices for our future.
I am human woman.
I am mother, daughter, grandmother, and partner.
I care about people and our planet.
We are now in Deniliquin New South Wales, in a three and a half star motel.
It is clean, there are showers of precious river water, and a perfect dinner of local fare.
But somehow I liked last night’s trillion-star sleep over so much more.
It holds a much bigger picture than us.