Michele: These last few days in Mission Beach it has been on my agenda to take photos of the school that Robin and Will attend. I need to document the grounds because otherwise you would not believe me. Image a school grounds with clustered plantings between walkways, The plantings use bromeliad as ground cover and include vanilla orchids climbing up the palms, mauve ginger flowers, huge purple orchids and fern epiphytes the size of four year 2 students (see photo of the door to Will's year 2 classroom). You just wouldn't take this for a primary school!
As I was taken photos with the kids after school today I came across Mr. Sheppard, the school gardener. I had a wonderful chat with him about the beauty of the school, the various plants and his job. He doesn't have to produce such lovely grounds, he just loves gardening. When I asked, he confessed that his garden has every year won best school grounds in the whole shire (shire = county) -- except for one year he didn't win when they applied chlorine to the school walls. I suspect it was the crew from Tully Primary that did that. ;-)
This photo shows Mr. Sheppard with one of the vanilla orchids. He is one of the people that make Mission Beach an incredibly special place.