“I want to read a book by a lake,” he says to me as I ply him for inspiration about what to do today. So I open up Google Maps and scan for somewhere large and blue.
The reservoir is an hour north east of Melbourne and by the Christmas Hills. I’m dubious about how festive they’ll be but it sounds nice, so we pack a picnic and go.
The main Sugarloaf grounds are huge and in the height of summer, they’re hot, treeless and uninviting We drive along Simpson Road to find more intimate grounds. At Saddle Dam, we get exactly what we’re looking for.
Naturally, we take a few ‘ain’t life grand’ photos for Facebook.
It must be the expansive blue water cut by fences and infrastructure that suddenly inspires a bleak turn in the conversation. We start talking about environmentalism and how humanity probably won’t kill the planet because it’s more tenacious than we are. Our bad decisions will still make it super uncomfortable for everyone. Maybe we won’t survive it. Maybe there’s still hope. Either way, we’re indebted to enjoy the beauty that exists in the world as we know it now.
The leafy sunlight and sparkle from the water make cheese and wine taste all that much better, or maybe we’re just reminded how lucky we are to be alive and here. He reads and I finally get some writing done.
So what’s there?
Sugarloaf Reservoir is a scenic picnic spot with big barbeque rotundas – the kind you use for extended family and Sunday lunch fellowship. There’s also lots of quieter, under-tree spots for picnics and reading. The reservoir is beautiful and overlooked by the rolling Christmas Hills, all blue and hazy in the background. There are no elves or reindeer (yeah, I’m sorry too), but reading by a lake? Nailed it.