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Sun 29 Mar

Letters to the Editor

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Geoff Henderson, Forest Creek, 12-09-14 15:35:
Chris Price I reckon your eye might have slipped when you aligned me with Rob Williams. I did not write about him at all.

Don't worry, I'll still get the best of Mossman Markets from you :)
Michael Rose, Port Douglas, 08-09-14 21:20:
Dear Editor,
I have lived in Port for about 4 years. During that time I have been a regular customer at the Coffee Club near Coles and would estimate that I have spent $100.00‘s there on meals and drinks but never again all over a lousy 2.26c. Lately I have been going to Cafe Ziva on the opposite side of the street and have seen many local former Coffee Club regulars there. One lady told me she was sick of the long queues and slow, poor service from untrained staff at the Coffee Club, perhaps management may need to address this issue. I have in the past received meals and drinks I didn't order, on one occasion I was completely forgotten, but still I stuck with them. Yesterday I ordered a cuppachino in a mug and paid $5.10 for it. The New Zealand girl taking orders who is another new staffer handed back a 20c coin and demanded I pay her with an Australian coin, even thought it looked the same on the front upon checking I saw it was a New Zealand coin, I realise its not legal tender here but they are everywhere, I was not prepared to cash a $50.00 note for the sake of 2.26c,I requested my money back and went to Cafe Ziva where I paid $4.30 for the exact same thing 70c cheaper. To my horror when I checked on money converter the NZ coin is worth 2.26c less than an Australian coin. I wonder how many of these coins are in circulation here? has anyone lost money? does Coffee Club check every coin they get and have they ever handed out any NZ coins to customers over the years? I bet they have. I'm hoping this is just a one off and not instructions from management over losing money it would take them forever to lose a dollar this way, I didn't make a scene, when my money was returned I left the premises. I did some comparisons Coffee Club charge $5.10 for the cuppachino in a mug and $22.90 for a big breakfast a total of $28.00, Cafe Ziva charge $4.30 for a cuppachino in a mug and $18.50 for the equivalent meal, a total of $22.80, a savings of $5.10. The staff are friendly, well trained, provide quick service, great quality food and excellent coffee. They obviously know it's the locals who will support them during the low season. I know where I‘ll keep going and recommend in future.PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS NOT A WHINGE IT'S FACT TO ADVISE PEOPLE THAT THERE IS COMPETITION IN THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY.
Debbie Favier, Daintree, 27-08-14 13:01:
This Wednesday night, 27th August, the film, Fractured Country, is being screened (free of charge) at the Mossman CWA Hall, at 7pm. This film documents the personal stories of Australians whose lives & communities have been changed forever by Coal & Gas mining in Australia.

The threat of fracking now stands at our very own doorstep. The current exploration lease & potential development of Nguddaboolgan (Mt Mulligan) should set our alarm bells ringing.

This is a grave issue as the establishment of coal seam gas wells here could potentially impact on the local & extended environment, especially the pristinely beautiful Mitchell River catchment which covers 70,000km2 & carries more water than the Murray-Darling system to the ocean to the north. At risk also are other areas of national significance, such as Lakefield National Park. The actual geological area of the Hodgkinson Basin extends from Mt Mulligan to an area within the north-west & south-west corner of our Douglas Shire, so there are no guarantees that this shire is immune from development.

It would be myopic to consider that this will not affect each of us in some way.

The serpentine-like Mt Mulligan is integral to the dreamtime stories of the Western Yalanji Djungan people & as such, is sacred land. Mt Mulligan & the Mitchell River are pristine places that many people visit to recharge their batteries, to rest & recuperate from busy lives. This is a highly significant place. It is Queensland’s Ayers Rock.

Unconventional gas exploration and/or production are now occurring in all Australian states. More than half of the Australian landscape is covered in coal and gas leases and applications; many Australian families & communities are suffering from this invasion. Rural residents are being forced to leave their family farms forever, according to the Lock the Gate Alliance which has been battling to empower land owners against the larger mining companies.

Just some of the impacts of invasive gas mining (fracking) include: industrialisation of whole regions with wells, roads, pipelines & infrastructure; contamination of ground & surface with toxic chemicals & methane; loss of quality agricultural land & reductions in property values; release of hazardous air pollutants; depletion of valuable water resources from well dewatering & use in fracking; greenhouse emissions from methane leakage. Then there are the social impacts, which are discussed in this film.

Is this what we want on our doorstep in FNQ?

This meeting is an important one. If you can’t attend but still wish to be involved somehow, please contact Bob Goodsell, on 0428 987988.
Chris Price, Wonga, 18-08-14 20:22:
Geoff Henderson, always the wise one. I have consistently agreed with your opinions and statements, but... is it necessary to opinionate (is that a word)about an American actor who was pretty average, just a bit loud. Sorry anyone is dead, but this is not a world changer. Why is there grief over an excessively paid actor who was an addict. Sorry, just don't get it.
Will Devlin, Port Douglas, 15-08-14 07:13:
Two great letters from Judith and Geoff.
Firstly, Geoff I agree with you about the exit, not having previously considered the option of a 'straighter line' out if the roundabout heading north, which would only impact positively in the traffic flow at the roundabout.
Judith, you're absolutely right about Robin Williams specifically and depression generally. It's much more prevalent in our community - any community - than most of us realise; and the sufferers go on, where they can, generally in silence. You know the refrain "How is it that YOU suffer depression?" "It's only because of medication and the love and support of others that I look and act 'normal'!"
On a third matter, how deliciously prescient was a certain (recent) letter suggesting the hoarding on Port Douglas Rd south of Sheraton roundabout be designated 'graffiti central'? Some clown's beaten us to the punch, complete with a pic of Pixie's late mate. Perhaps this will move Govt - State or Local - to require revegetation of this blight on our landscape?
Judith Shapland, Port Douglas, 14-08-14 10:00:
In Memory Robin Williams

My grief for someone I have never met, yet who touch my heart in a deep and profound way, has been overwhelming, I feel like I have lost a best friend.
Yes, I am talking about Robin Williams.
He gave so much joy and brilliance to the world but clearly the world could not reciprocate.
His battles go back many years with his struggles with addiction, his need to self-medicate his despair, which ultimately is a vicious cycle of shame and isolation.
He spoke of his loneliness in childhood; this can be where the hole in his soul began- how pervasive this loneliness must have been.
For someone so loved and celebrated, this love could not fill the hole in his soul.
His demon’s rode shot gun with him his entire life.
When I think about this, this touches the hole in my own soul, rubs ups against my own deep feelings of despair and tips me into my well of grief. The tears pour out from this space, I have no control here.
I cannot suppress this sadness, I will not, I will honour that despair in myself, as a means to connect with this man in the most primitive way.
Suicide is the finale act, many say a selfish one. I do not believe they understand how desperate people feel, that these feeling take you to the edge.
Some people have the courage to step over; yes I do believe it takes immense courage to take your own life.
The family left behind struggles with the loss, in reality they would have lived with the depression and witnessed that immense struggle day in day out, year in year out.
I honour you Robin Williams, you were a champion amongst men, I am so very sad you could not stay and find peace in your soul.
Thank you for your legacy that you left behind - a shining light has been extinguished.
We need to allow each other our despair, be able to sit with our own and other peoples, all of us have grief and sadness.
Find someone whom you can trust to sit in that place with, who allows you to release - then find the light to guide you to a new day.
Life goes on
Judith Shapland 13/08/14
Geoff Henderson, Forest Creek, 09-08-14 07:11:
Will Devlin I do agree that the propaganda signs should go.

But replacing the lightweight guidepost with concrete might not be the best option.
Firstly, do we really know the posts are being knocked over by "...the morons who drive their jacked-up four wheel drive junkers..."? As far as I know, there would be little evidence that these guys are the culprits.

Secondly, the design of the roundabout exit at that point could be revised so that the posts are no longer in a logical vehicle path. Exiting north from the roundabout needlessly forces drivers to incline left and then right before finally heading up the highway. It is hardly a natural well designed flow path.

Thirdly vehicle direction informs other drivers of the intent of other cars. This roundabout does not do that very well. A vehicle approaching from the south but intending to turn right towards Port first turns left as it enters then right as it goes towards Port.The intention to go left or right is not always obvious especially if no turn indicators are used. Adding to the height of the roundabout with vegetation might make this worse.

Fourthly if a car bangs into a concrete post it will stop and likely be unable to continue. It will require a tow tuck and police attendance. Large delays for all concerned. And people may also be hurt. At least the lightweight posts don't seem to have that outcome when struck. But they are costly to replace.

Surely a better option is a modification to the design that makes leaving the roundabout to the north a bit more logical. This would not reduce the traffic calming effect ot the roundabout and might save a few posts...
Will Devlin, Port Douglas, 03-08-14 14:22:
Editor, good to the buzz around town that planning is underway to complete the vegetation and/or structural beautification of the Entrance Roundabout. I wonder whether, during that process, consideration could be given to the following?

1. Removal of those hideous signs, south and north of town, announcing the construction of the roundabout and which (from memory) were erected AFTER the work finished announcing the cost; and

2. Placing one (or perhaps 2) concrete-filled guide posts as one travels north and exits the roundabout toward Mossman - just to show the morons who drive their jacked-up four wheel drive junkers that knocking over plastic guide posts is NOT the latest auto sport in the Shire.


Janette Walker, Port Douglas, 25-07-14 21:40:
Has anyone else noticed that there are more potholes in the new sections of road on Davidson Street than there were BEFORE the roadworks . Lots of dollars being spent but are we getting any 'bang for our buck?'
Paula Johnson, Port Douglas, 17-07-14 19:26:
Surely this is a decision for the applicable department of the DSC as they know best which species requires little maintenance but provides shade in summer. The DSC employees are well-versed in tropical living and we should respect their decision. Why is the Council involved at all? Consult or don't consult; you're never going to please everyone.

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