Waka’s Place…

We recently visited Broke Inlet for a weekend with Sean & Sandy…

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Broke Inlet –  © Sam Harris 2011

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WORDS BY SANDY MITCHELL

My Grandfather Wally Wilson, a gentle man, first brought his sons Waka & Don to Broke Inlet when they were children. After much fishing, camping around fires and exploring, a fishing shack was finally erected in the 1950’s. This provided an excellent base to moor the dinghy. You could cruise down the inlet to inspect fishing nets or check to see if the sandbar had broken its banks for the winter, flushing in new fish and generally giving the inlet a fresh lease of life.

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Arriving at the sandbar – Broke Inlet –  © Sam Harris 2011

The sandbar at Broke Inlet – © Sam Harris 2011

Uma & Sandy baiting the line – © Sam Harris 2011

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Only reachable by boat the isolation of the hut has a certain romance– a place to read and paint or sit around the fire ’til the wee hours with good company and red wine (or Muscat in my fathers case!) Breakfasts the following morning with freshly caught Bream and lemon are hard to beat too.

The wallpaper inside the shack always provides a bit of amusement as its mostly compiled of old playboy centerfolds from the 60’s and 70’s! Set off nicely with a dartboard and the odd regional map. It is a place where rules are broken, you don’t have to wash if you don’t feel like it – you can eat when you want and it doesn’t matter if you make a mess, its all just easy.

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Uma – Broke Inlet – © Sam Harris 2011

Yali, Uma, Yael Sandy, Sean & Jasper – Broke Inlet – © Sam Harris 2011

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I remember my father Don, telling me when he was a boy, on a still night you could hear the breakers from down the inlet softly thumping their barrels onto the pristine sand where the ocean meets the mouth.  The mouth that was to unfortunately claim the life of his older brother Waka. In their 70’s and 80’s by now Waka and Don had gone down in their dinghy to inspect the sandbar. Not long after it had broken, they were sucked out to sea; Dad made a leap for a solid piece of sand just in the nick of time. He will never forget the image of his brother sitting at the helm with his hand on the rudder, charging head on into a massive wave. He was never seen again…

Broke Inlet has been a place to bring friends and rejoice in the simple things of life. A pastime I know Dad and Waka have put to task! But I have a healthy respect for the place as it can be the calmest of millponds to the full Tempest. It has an ability to change before your eyes– you never quite know what nature will throw at you.

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Sean, Sandy and Jasper – Broke Inlet – © Sam Harris 2011

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3 thoughts on “Waka’s Place…

    1. samharrisphoto Post author

      Glenn…mate, tell me about it! come down here some time and we’ll go visit : ))

      Paul… thanks for your response, i’ll pass your compliments on to Sandy.

      Yes Waka’s place is special. One of those places you never want to leave… Poignant when you consider Waka’s story…

      Reply

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