Listen ...

7 March 2009
Instead of finding some weekend reading for you, this time I have some music.

Listen ... it's sublime.

This is Australian man Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu singing Bapa. Geoffrey has been blind since birth and he sings in "language". He speaks and sings almost no English. His language is Yolngu from Elcho Island. There are subtitles on this clip so you will know what he's singing about. But the true reason for listening to this is to hear and see his extraordinary talent.

There is a cyclone off the coast heading towards us. Currently a category 3, it is predicted to move up a notch and be category 4 later today. Here is the latest map. We live just under the bottom of the cloud mass, about half way up the east coast of Australia. If tropical cyclone Hamish doesn't move away from the coast, it will move south, towards us. Later today we'll move the sun shade sheets of roofing iron in the chook yard and generally tidy up so there is nothing to fly around in the strong winds. I'll come back on Sunday to let you know what's happening.

SUNDAY @ 4.30 pm

The cyclone is still hovering up the coast. It hasn't rained yet but the forecast is for rain tonight. We are fine. Thanks for all your good wishes. Julia in Mackay, and the other readers up the coast, I hope you're fine too.


  1. Gosh, good luck to you from one who lives on the Gulf Coast and is quite familiar with Hurricanes! Please keep safe.

  2. Hi Rhhonda,

    Just popped by on the offchance that you had posted. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers today. Whilst I have never been in a cyclone I can imagine it would be pretty frightening. Keep us posted if you can. In the mean time I'll listen to Geoffrey.

    Blessings Gail

  3. Hi Rhonda,
    Just left a comment on your previous post when I saw this one. I will be thinking about you and hope that the bad weather goes away. I often look at the BBC weather site to see whats happening around the world so I will keep an eye on it this weekend. Good luck.
    Cheers, Eileen in England.

  4. We have for the last week had two tripical storms with alot of flooding and now our house and garage have sprung leaks. Maintance is a never ending chore.

  5. Good morning Rhonda,

    I just finished listening to AM on the ABC and thought of you and Hanno when the cyclone was covered. Have a good day indoors knitting and I hope there isn't too much problem outside.

    To add to your listening pleasure on offer, at
    anyone can interested can see the Archibald winning portrait of Geoffrey Yunupingu. Oh my goodness, his song is plying on the ABC right now!

  6. Be safe!! Here in the states we call them hurricanes. I am have been through a few myself and they are no fun. Anxious to hear how all fared!!

  7. Hope the cyclone moves away Rhonda, Stay safe and look forward to hearing from you Sunday.Take careSteph x

  8. Ooh, take care! Hope everything goes OK with the storm...

  9. Thanks Rhonda for the link to the music. It was great to listen to.

  10. You have had floods and tropical cyclones.
    We have had fires and earthquakes.
    not good. stay safe. thinking of you and sending you our prayers.

  11. Hello Rhonda

    Thank you for Geoffrey's song. Lovely. Such a haunting voice.

    I do hope the cyclone doesn't eventuate near you. Keep the hatches battened down and stay safe,

    - Joolz

  12. Hi Rhonda,

    Hope the cyclones doesn't hit your house.

    By the way can we please have a post on growing our own honey? Can a family have a little beehive?

    Best wishes,

  13. Hi Rhonda I hope it moves out to sea, we have had enough bad stuff happen in Australia for 2009 already. You and Hanno keep safe.

    Tracie xx

  14. That was really beautiful. Thank you for throwing it out there for us to listen to.

  15. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers. Having survived Hurricane Ike last year I KNOW it's no fun.

  16. Do take care. I'll be back to see that you are o.k.

    Becky K.

  17. Rhonda,

    I will pray that you don't get any bad weather.

    I would love to hear if you are reading any good books:)

    keep us up-dated on your weather.


  18. Prayers that you make it safely thru the storm!

  19. My prayers are with you. I have been through many storms living on the coast of NC. Hunker down! Hopefully, it will be a fast moving storm with little damage.

  20. I wish you safety and I will keep you in my thoughts this weekend. BE safe and well.

  21. M. Stump in Winston-Salem, NCMarch 07, 2009 12:20 pm

    We have tornadoes here in the Spring--very similar. I'll say a special prayer for you. Stay safe!

  22. Hi Rhonda,

    How wonderful is Geoffrey. I was first introduced to him last February when he was getting some airtime on ABC radio when Australia said Sorry. My favourites are 'I was born blind' and like you, Bapa. His music is so beautiful - I bought his CD last year and often listen to at in the background in my office at work.

    I hope your fair well with the cyclone. Good luck with battening down the hatches.

    I have been meaning to comment on the knitting project you have going. Oh its such a lovely idea. I will sort of play along with my crochet squares which will become the gift I give my brother and his wife when their baby is born. I've slowed down with it and need to get going to get it finished on time! It's nice to know so many others are enjoying their knitting.

    Nice to hear from you this Saturday :)

  23. Oh Gosh! I hope that the cyclone turns away from the coast!
    I will pray that you, Hanno, your household, friends and family are all not in harms way.

  24. Dear Rhonda,

    Geoffrey is an inspiring artist, I love listening to his songs.

    Good luck with the weather, we are about an hour or so north of you just outside Gympie - we are watching the TC too! take care :)

  25. Personally, I'd like to see it come a lot further south before making landfall and dying. Maybe landfall south of Gladstone as there isn't so many people living there and I know they'd like the rain. We could do with the rain that would come onshore in SE Qld (Brisbane specifically) if it does come far enough south. If it makes landfall during the next day or so we won't see much effect down here at all.

    I'm not envious of those poor buggers on the Witsunday Islands though - right in the path of destruction. Lucky the islands are rock and most of the buildings are built high enough to escape the storm surge. Wouldn't be on the water for quids though.

  26. Hi Rhonda,

    still lurking and reading, and now keeping my fingers crossed that the cyclone moves away from the coast. I agree with Tracie- Australia really doesn't need more bad weather...

  27. Hope all goes ok for you Rhonda.
    Will be thinking of you.

    Hereford uk

  28. You and your family will be in my prayers, stay safe.
    Will be anxiously waiting to see your next post and how you and Hanno fared.

  29. Hello Rhonda

    4.45 am on Sunday here in NZ- just checked on Cyclone Hamish. Sad to learn it is strengthening to Cyclone force 3, heading towards MacKay.

    Hope you come through okay, will be thinking of Queensland today, and you and yours especially,

    care and huggles, Michelle in Wellington

  30. Oh dear, I wrote too soon. 5.00am news reports that Hamish is now a Category Five Cyclone, due to really wallop Northern Queensland (folks this area has already been hit by major flooding this year).

    Sending support, care and hope, Mickle

  31. Thinking of you Rhonda with the cyclone, hope all is well there.
    Thanks for the knitting inspiration - have decided to join in & am half way through the first square. I hope the only storm you are experiencing is the one you are knitting up with all our needles clicking world wide !
    Smiles - Jeni.

  32. Oh, do take care! I'll be thinking of you and Hanno!

  33. Good luck! I will be thinking of you.

  34. Rhonda Jean, Hi from here in the U.S. I absolutely love your blog. It's so informative and lovely. I am not lying when I say my breath literally slows down when I'm reading your blog. I do a lot of the same things you do to live a simple life. Knitting has been so healing to me lately. Instead of quilting when my mother was sick, I just needed to knit. Something about touching the soft yarn was so healing. It helped me relax at a very difficult time. I would love to be a member of your knit-along. I do not have a blog, but am thinking of starting one, as one of your commenters mentioned, to document the process. I have always wanted to ask you for the recipe for your orange pound cake. Have you ever posted it on your blog? I want to sit down with a cup of tea and have a slice when I see it. Thank you for your beautiful words and helpfulness. Sincerely, Mona

  35. Hi Rhonda,
    Thinking of you - hope all is well.
    I enjoyed watching Geoffrey and hearing that beautiful music. Thanks for introducing us to him. I liked watching his eyebrows while he sang - they added expression to the words.
    Rachel L

  36. good luck and keep safe. looking forward to hearing from you Sunday

  37. Thinking of you and Hanno and sending love,

    Anita xx

  38. My soul soared when I sat here listening to that,bless you for sharing it with me x
    I hope the hurricane passes with no damage to anyone,things can always be mended x
    GTM x x x

  39. As if you haven't had enough bad weather down under! My thoughts are with you all.

  40. Hi Rhonda, Starting to get a bit windy here in Mackay this morning (Sunday 7.30am)it is far enough out to sea that we should only get the edges of it but we had a long night expecting worse. It doesn't seem so bad in daylight..not out of the woods yet though and they can turn on a dime.Still an avid fan, regards Julia in Mackay

  41. I love this artist, he is an amazing talent. A girl I know who works in a shop said when she plays his CD her customers are calmer and there isnt as many rude ones lol.
    We are doing the same today around the garden just making sure everything is put away, cleaning gutters etc. Take Care

  42. I hope everything is ok and the storm has missed you.

  43. Hope the hurricane passes you by, thank you for the *beautiful* song. Love the chooks - sigh, wish I could have chickens but not a chance.

  44. Oooh, Ill keep you in my prayers. That looks like a nasty one. Australia has been been hit this year with TOO much. =(

  45. Yes, Geoffrey has a wonderful talent, I only really discovered him a short while ago, after leaving my tv on when the show I watched finished.

    I pray that you are kept safe and that Hamish moves out to sea.

  46. I am sending you and your family best wishes and good luck! Please keep us posted. I hope you and your are is spared.

  47. What a beautiful voice Geoffrey has. I'm listening as I type this. I must have listened to all the YouTube videos and one referenced his MySpace space which I Bookmarked. Thank you for introducing us to him. Such a treat.

    Hope you don't have any damage from the storm. Stay safe.


  48. Good luck riding out the cyclone.

    I was lucky enough to be in the audience at the Opera House when they filmed that video of Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu, and I've never heard anyone else even remotely like him. He's an original. It was a wonderful experience to be there.
    Everyone was very quiet and just transfixed by his voice, and the other players were excellent. It was only a short concert, but one of the most memorable ever. His CD is well worth getting, as it's one of those really beautiful albums that you never tire of listening to.

  49. beautiful, beautiful music!

    Also, I'm thinking of you and others up in your part of the country, and very much hope that it's going to be ok, and with as little impact as possible.

    Keep safe, and blessings to you and yours.

  50. do hope you'll be all right, rhonda, my thoughts are with you, that looks nasty.

  51. Thank you for sharing the music, it was just lovely! He is one talented man to sing like an angel :)

    Thinking of you and Hanno while the cyclone hangs over you. I hope you get enough rain, just not too much!



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