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Reviving an old love – a road trip to remember

       by Noelle Clark

‘When I was quite young,

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I was a mad rock hound. I loved fossicking, a hobby I enjoyed with my Dad who carted me all over the countryside, searching for agates, jasper, quartz, and any little speck of rock that took my fancy.

One year, when I was about 11 or 12, Dad and I travelled to a little place called Proston in Queensland. We spent several days working like dogs in the quest to unearth garnets, those gorgeous claret-red gemstones which often take a back seat to other popular gems.

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Dad and I stood knee-deep in a muddy creek, shovelling, sieving, sorting, and searching for the elusive garnets. It is a memory I still hold dear, and one that came back to me vividly as I did exactly the same with Andy, my grandson.

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Fossicking is such a great hobby. It’s a quest to find riches – not in the financial sense – but in the sense that these small stones which look so drab coated in clay, turn – like Cinderella – into an object of utmost beauty once washed. Of course, if the gems are cut, faceted, and polished, then their true beauty really shines.

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But I love rough gems. I love spotting them in the sieve, then washing them, then holding them up to the sun to see their colour. It is so satisfying to find something that no other human hand has ever held. Almost a primeval desire to be the first.

I still have my rock collection from childhood. It’s buried somewhere in my shed. Andy loved the trip away with his Nana. Hopefully one day he’ll inherit my old rock collection and become a fossicker too.


You can camp at the fossicking areas, or do as Andy and I did, and rent a cabin. It’s an easy four or five hour drive from Brisbane, and a similar distance from Sydney.

Fossicking gets in your blood. It’s a great hobby that all the family can enjoy, and it’s inexpensive. And what, you may ask, are the chances of finding a gorgeous sapphire or two?

The road trip to Inverell and Glen Innes  was also a great refresher for my gem hunting skills. You see, I have a new book coming out in July and it is pretty much based on fossicking.

About the Author

Noelle Clark is an Australian author zsilv3434


of contemporary romance novels, rural romance, and historical fiction. Her books weave romance, intrigue, and adventure into colourful and interesting settings. They feature characters who deal with love and loss; and who experience the often difficult facets of life, such as forgiveness and redemption.

Noelle lives in a secluded cottage in sunny Queensland, Australia, surrounded by lush rainforest trees such as piccabeen palms, ferns and strangler figs.

She shares her home with a cat and two dogs, and shares her garden with all manner of sub-tropical rainforest wildlife including red-legged pademelons, pythons, brush turkeys, the amazing land mullet, lorikeets, and parrots, and the endangered Richmond birdwing butterfly.

She has two grown up children and four very small grandchildren. zdickwords

When Noelle’s not writing and travelling, she enjoys

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growing her own organic vegetables, tending her chickens, photography, playing guitar, and art. Noelle admits to being a confirmed procrastinator, often daydreaming about travel to exotic places, and perfecting ways to avoid housework.


Website: www.noelleclark.net

Facebook: NoelleClark_Author

Twitter: noelle_clark

Pinterest: NoelleCBooks

Instagram: clark.noelle



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Dave Buckley is heading off on a road trip to nowhere, licking his wounds and trying to rebuild his life.

Charlie Moore is stuck in a dead end job, but toughs it out because she knows how much she is needed.

Dave and Charlie are both coming to terms with loss and sadness.

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In the little town of Bindarra Creek, their lives crash into each other, and they find in their fledgling friendship a rapport, a warmth that they both desperately seek.

This is the tale of two young people alone in the world. The chances of them meeting would have been non-existent if it hadn’t been for one thing. Is Charlie’s friend Cecil watching over her, guiding her life, steering her towards happiness? If that’s so, Cecil has his work cut out for him, because both Charlie and Dave are stubborn and neither are ready for the complications that surround them.

There are only two chances that Dave and Charlie will solve the riddle of Cecil Crawford’s secret and end up finding riches beyond their dreams—Buckley’s and none.


Buy Links for Buckley’s Chance


Amazon.au             http://tinyurl.com/hvuf33g

Amazon.com          http://amzn.to/29ZawUW

Print edition           http://amzn.to/2a6Pi8f


A little about the Bindarra Creek Romance series:

13 months. 13 authors. 13 romances.

Welcome to Bindarra Creek, a struggling country town where people work hard and love deeply. Set in the picturesque tablelands of New England, Australia, Bindarra Creek is a fictional, drought stricken community full of intrigue, adventure, drama and romance.

Life and love in a small country town has never been more challenging.