Tuesday, March 16, 2010

purple prose from pink'un

We have to give a belated salute to this quality writing from the Pink'Un.

Yes, the Financial Times has visited the beautiful island - and liked what it saw.

None of the standard regurgitation of corporate facts and figures (63 bays, 21 beaches or whatever it is) here: we like the turn of phrase.

We love quokkas being compared to the size of handbags.

It is sandwiched within a report on the watery pleasure of Perth, which includes a mention of Kings Park.

Shame about the spelling error in the beautiful island's name but you can't have everything.

"Rottness, affectionately known as Rotto, is Perth’s island garden. It’s a 1,900ha cake of limestone with 30,000 years of aboriginal habitation to it. After years of dismal karma (it was used as an aboriginal prison and later as an internment camp for Germans and Austrians during the first world war and Italians during the second), it is seeking redemption as a wildlife reserve from which cars are banned; everyone travels the island by bike or bus.

"We hired bikes with a child trailer for the boys. The beaches and reef shorelines are, thanks to clear water over limestone, bright sapphire, though the water was so cold that the paddling quickly gave way to a hunt about the rockpools. Inland, we explored a series of pink-hued salt pans, where ballerina-like stilts pick brine shrimp from the diminishing waters.

"Rottnest is derived from the Dutch for “rat’s nest,” so named by a late 17th-century exploring sea captain, Willem de Vlamingh. They weren’t rats, though, but quokkas: a handbag-sized marsupial rare on the mainland but plentiful here, where it tumbles tamely in and out of trees.

"Most visit Rotto for a day trip by fast ferry, but you can also stay on the island in modest self-catering villas. (Rotto’s popularity makes a ballot for these necessary during school holidays.)"

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