That Bridge Again

Anzac Bridge on Cloudy Day

Regular readers of mine (and I thank every one of you) will know how much I love the Anzac Bridge. Yes, I do. Even on a cloudy, rainy day.

As I trudge through the park in my old trainers that squeak when they get wet so that I sound like I have a badly fitting fake leg, battling with my five dollar umbrella that keeps turning inside out with the wind even though Stavros from the you-name-it-we-sell-it-shop on the corner told me it was verry, verry good quality – you won’t be disappointed, lady; I look at the bridge and I feel my mood shift. And a smile begins to form.

It happens every time.

What is it that draws me to this bridge, this place?

Is it the way the shadows form on the water so that there is a world not just above the water, but below it?

Is it seeing the bravest birds soar over the bridge, jubilant at reaching such a height, wings spread like capes?

Is it hearing the whirr of the traffic as it crosses, keeping the city moving?

Or is it the sense of unity that sweeps over me knowing that my side of the city is joined permanently to the other?

I’m not the only one who feels it. People catch me taking countless photos and stop to talk. One woman paints the bridge in watercolours. Another is in a walking group that walks around the bay and over the bridge every Friday morning. Another young girl had her first kiss one night as the lights from the bridge shone on the water.

Is it the bridge or is it the bay that enchants us?

It is hard to be sure.

Whatever the reason we continue to visit, looking at the way the bridge touches the sky. Anchored like boats.

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31 thoughts on “That Bridge Again

  1. I’m not really familiar with this bridge Sel but is that the old coat hanger way in the distance?

    I think just being near water is a soothing magical thing and I can understand your affinity for bridges.

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  2. What a lovely post! We all seem to be drawn to certain places don’t we? For me, it’s always the water, preferably the ocean. I long so much to live by the ocean, I know I would be a happier person if i could. Such a calming, soothing place listening to the waves, breathing in the sea breeze, the stillness…You’ve brought all these lovely scenes to mind Sel.

    Im so glad you’ve found this refuge from the storms of the day Sel. I can tell from your words how powerful being on your bridge is for you. We all need these places to find peace, don’t we?

    Hugs again, G 🙂

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  3. I think it’s the bridge and the water. It is quite magnificant even in a photo. I love the stories the people have shared with you about their life with the bridge.
    Very nice post.

    Geraldine- I too want to live at the ocean one day. I love the sea.

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  4. I like the Anzac Bridge, too … maybe better than the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

    Bridges usually say one of two things to me:
    ‘I want to cross this water/road/railway line’ or
    ‘Wasn’t my designer a good one?’

    This is one of the very few I know which says both.

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  5. I feel the same way about the Halemaumau vent in the Volcanoes National Park. Some people come to look at it for a few minutes , then leave. I can sit for hours and just watch the glow. It’s nice to have a place where you can go to feel akin with and just relax. The bridge is beautiful.

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  6. To me this bridge looks like a sewing needle, and the road is the thread that’s stitching both sides together.

    A lovely post Sel.

    Cheers.

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  7. Beautiful photo and a beautiful bridge. I like Bear’s description of it.
    Sadly, bridges creep me out. I don’t like going over them especially if they are really busy with traffic. I don’t know where this phobia came from…..it’s new.

    However, I like to look at them from afar….

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  8. GYPSY:
    It is indeed the old coat hanger you see in the distance. The Anzac Bridge is kind of round the corner from it. And to the left a bit. The Harbour Bridge is a magnificent bridge too. I often go into the city just to see it and the Opera House!

    You’re right – being by the water is magical. I know I shouldn’t, but I often envy people who live on the beach. That must be fantastic.

    JOANNA:
    It is a great bridge. I am quite fond of it!

    GERALDINE:
    Living by the ocean is very serene. My family in Ireland live right on the water and even though it is the North Atlantic and can be very cold and choppy, there is still an element of peacefulness there. In summer it is absolutely gorgeous!

    TRAVELRAT:
    What a fantastic way to look at it. I couldn’t agree more. I’m going to write that down so I remember it!

    PUNATIK:
    Now that would be something to see. I have never seen the vent of a volcano. It must be the most amazing sight. Not to mention nice and warm. I don’t blame you for sitting there for hours!

    TIMOTEO:
    Now that’s good. I really like that. A profound observation and poem rolled into one. Brilliant!

    GEL:
    You’re back. Where have you been? How have you been? I haven’t been able to access your blog for ages. How fitting that the bridge should welcome you back. That is really cool!

    BEAR:
    That is good too. What a fabulous image. That is going to stay with me for a while. Awesome!

    DANA:
    Phobias often take us by surprise. There is something a little daunting about bridges. There is always that subconscious question every time we cross : ‘Will this thing stay up?’ I can completely understand why they creep you out.

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  9. Hi LAURI,
    Didn’t mean to skip past you there. Sorry about that.
    The stories are fantastic. I loved hearing them. I think it’s the bridge and the water too. There is such a nice aspect to it that people can’t help but congregate there!

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  10. Oooh and I am so proud that I have actually been on your bridge. We kind of went over it by mistake as we forgot to get off the bus at the fish market and the next stop was the other side of the bridge. But I’m glad we did.

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  11. There must be an energy that the bridge generates that attracts you and other so. Wonder what it is and from where it originates. It could prove interesting to delve into who designed the bridge and see if he/she is still alive or if their energy is there at the bridge calling to you.

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  12. I just love this post!!! I love being close to the water and here I love spending time at the Old Port looking at the sailboats and the water! I think water makes us go into some sort of relaxing mood!

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  13. Bridges! Nothing like bridges to bring forth memories worth keeping, and there have been such bridges in my life. At the moment, I am between bridges … those I’ve left behind and the one ahead that waits patiently for me to cross over into oblviion. I am content to have it so.

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  14. RELUCS:
    Getting to the fish markets is actually very tricky. There are lots of one way streets and weird turns. It is easy to miss your stop. I like to think that you have been on this bridge. Makes the world seem smaller, somehow.

    TOBEME:
    That would be an interesting project. I’m going to look into it. The actual area where the bay is, is ancient Aboriginal land, so there is definitely a vibe there. Years ago that area also used to be a working port. Two reasons that draw people perhaps. I’ll look into the background of the builder.

    TBALL:
    It definitely does relax us. Straight away I could feel my mood shift. And that’s got to be a good thing!

    MAMA ZEN:
    There is a teensy bit of magic there, I think!

    TEXSBLU:
    I like how you refer to it as ethereal. There is definitely a feeling of that there!

    WALTER:
    You’re absolutely right. There is a lot of beauty around. I really appreciate you stopping by. Thank you for your comment!

    MARY:
    The metaphorical bridge is perhaps the one that draws us most of all. I really like that observation!

    JULES:
    It’s a real ‘On a clear day you can see forever’ kind of thing!

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  15. President JFK gave a sweet speech on the sea, and how we’re drawn to it. I’m going to find it for you, Selma. If anyone can appreciate such sentiments, it’s YOU!
    I loved this post of yours!
    Peace, woman.

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  16. Here’s that speech.
    President Kennedy spoke of this deep attraction to the sea in a speech he delivered at the America Cup races in Newport, Rhode Island in September 1962:

    “I really don’t know why it is that all of us are so committed to the sea, except I think it’s because in addition to the fact that the sea changes, and the light changes, and ships change, it’s because we all came from the sea. And it is an interesting biological fact that all of us have, in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea — whether it is to sail or to watch it — we are going back from whence we came.”
    My Theya Helen(Greek for Aunt; she was my Grand-Aunt) gave me a laminated copy of this. I keep it in my home-library, downstairs.
    I hope you enjoy the speech, Selma. 😉

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  17. Two more things:
    Theya Helen passed away on August 14th, 2007, and did not get to see President Obama become our President! She would’ve been so pleased.
    Please “Friend-Request” me, Selma, if you “Facebook”, by using “Lisa Nanette Allender”.
    Thanks, ya’ll.

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  18. HI LISA,
    I am so sorry your Theya Helen passed away before she got to see Obama come to office. I am sure, however, that she can ‘see’ what’s going on.

    That speech is fantastic. I just LOVE it. I’m going to print it out. We did come from the sea and perhaps that is why we are so drawn there. It’s a primeval thing.

    Thanks for your lovely and insightful commentary. XX

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  19. (I’m sorry I didn’t email anyone with yet another new blog address, because I became locked out of that old blog again…& felt embarrassed that I had not been able to update all of my blog buddies.) Computer issues drive me nuts.)

    *Good News: This new blog is working fine (maybe there was something quirky with my old address or code on the host’s end), so please note the new address Click here for my poem pleaseand I actually made 2 recent posts and am back to posting at least a couple of times/wk.)

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  20. Hi GEL,
    I’m so glad you are back. I’ve missed you. I am having trouble commenting on Typepad at the moment for some reason, but I will try and get to the bottom of it. I can read the posts but can’t comment. Don’t know what’s happening!

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  21. it is quite a beautiful bridge even against the backdrop of the city, if I live there, I walk across it and takes lots and lots of pictures…

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  22. Hi BRE,
    The bridge is in Sydney on Rozelle Bay which runs off Sydney Harbour. It is near the suburb of Glebe. It’s about a 5-minute car ride from the CBD. I hope you get to see it one day!!

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