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Byron Shire
February 26, 2021

S Sorrensen’s Here & Now: Back to nearly normal

Latest News

‘Hollywood’ drug squads over the top

I guess we have to thank Hollywood for the enduring myth that a black-clad squad of elite 'blokes', preferably with cool helicopters, from the capital are needed to crack down on really serious crime in hick parts of the country like Mullumbimby.

Other News

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox: There is no place like home… actually there are no places

Local low income residents in Byron Bay are the human koalas of our Shire. They too have lost much of their habitat. We need affordable housing now, not in three years, or five years, or ten. Now.

Super swim challenge accepted

A group of mates from Brunswick Heads, Byron Bay and Lennox Head, recently formed a swim team known as the Anti Budgie Boardriders for the purpose of taking part in the Starlight Foundations Super Swim Challenge.  

A name by any other

Rod Murray, Ocean Shores An extract from Turning the Tide, the latest Australian Marine Conservation supporter newsletter: ‘Last year the Adani...

Entertainment in the Byron Shire and beyond for the week beginning 24 February, 2021

Entertainment in the Byron Shire and beyond for the week beginning 24 February, 2021

Call to protect oceans from plastic and pollution

A new sign has been installed at Main Beach, Byron Bay, calling for increased awareness and collective action on the issue of marine debris and pollution. 

Woman assaults police – Bangalow

Police say that a woman resisted arrest and assaulted two officers yesterday in Bangalow.

Lismore. Wednesday, 9.35am.

Oh dear. There are no poached eggs on the menu.

I look to my friend T and raise an eyebrow. She shrugs with a sadness that only those living in the first world can appreciate. Life is difficult.

‘I’m not having ham,’ says my mate W, dropping the menu onto the table. ‘If I have any more ham I’ll squeal! Thank God Christmas is over.’

I don’t want ham either. Even though ham is as intergral to Christmas as, say, Jesus or Big W, I’m not much of a Yuletide traditionalist. This morning, sitting at a footpath table at one of Lismore’s many cafes, I’m glad the annual social convulsion is over. There’s ample parking and people look relaxed. Normal life settles lazily on the town like smoke from fireworks.

I don’t want ham; I want poached eggs on toast. (Okay, I may not be a Christmas traditionalist, but when it comes to cafe breakfasts, I am a stickler for convention.)

‘Should we go somewhere else?’ T asks, feeling responsible because it was her suggestion that we try this new cafe. But it’s not her fault. The cafe was open and it is breakfast time so you’d assume there’d be poached eggs. Surely, there’s some sort of legal obligation to provide poached eggs if you’re a cafe open at this time of day. Anyway, I don’t blame T for the no-poached-eggs crisis; I blame W.

‘Well, there’s only one place really…’ I say, refering to the place where we always go when we’re having breakfast in Lismore. They make the best poached (free range) eggs on (multigrain) toast this side of Gonnellabah. But today we didn’t go there, because…

‘Oh. Don’t let me stop you. You go there then,’ says W, ‘but I don’t want to.’

‘No, mate,’ I say. ‘It’s okay. I’m always up for trying new things.’ (This is a lie. I don’t like stuff I haven’t tried. That’s why I don’t try it.)

I look at the menu. Porridge, toasted olive bread, shakshuka…

Shakshuka. Hmm. What’s that? I check the fine print. It’s eggs. Baked in a spicy tomato sauce. Baked in sauce is like poached, I guess.

‘Do you think baked in sauce is like poached?’ I ask.

‘No,’ says T, getting up from the table. ‘I’m gonna check the display inside.’

‘I’m never eating ham again…’ says W.

‘Well, I’m going to give the shakuhachi a go,’ I say. I can smell our coffees arriving perched on the arms of a pregnant waitress. They smell really good. (The coffee, that is.)

T returns.

‘What is shakuhachi anyway? Japanese?’ I ask.

‘Yes. It’s a flute,’ T says. Wearily.


‘Shakshuka, on the other hand, is an Israeli dish. Very trendy now,’ she says. ‘You should try it.’

Oh dear. I have an issue: By eating shakuha… shakshuka, am I supporting the violent suppression of the struggle for an independent Palestinian state?

‘Do you think it’s, you know, okay to eat Israeli food?’ I ask.

‘Oh god..’ says T, shaking her head.

‘You going to have it?’ I ask.

‘No way. I’m having a ham, tomato and cheese croissant,’ she says.

W groans. ‘Ham. Never again…’ he says.

The waitress hovers: ‘You ready to order?’

‘I’ll have the shakthingy,’ I say.

‘I’ll have the ham, tomato and cheese croissant,’ T says.

‘I’ll have the same as her,’ W says.

There’s an awkward silence. T and I look at W. W looks at T and me.

‘Without the ham,’ adds W, with what sounds like reluctance.

We sip our coffees. Arabic. Good.

Thunder rattles a clear sky.

Things have returned to normal. Good.

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Local fisherfolk caught in the parking fine net

FIsherfolk have been caught in the net of parking fines designed to stop travellers parking up for the night on the Tweed Coast Road and they are seeking help to access their beaches at night without fines.

Family Court scrapped

Despite overwhelming opposition from Australia’s family law specialists and advocates, the federal Liberal-Nationals government and cross benchers scrapped the Family Law Court and subsumed it into the circuit courts last week.

Cavanbah centre gets a taste of 3×3 basketball

The Byron Beez basketball team in collaboration with the U League hosted a 3x3 tournament at the Cavanbah centre at the end of January that attracted 30 teams.

Northern Rivers policeman accused of youth assault acquitted

Magistrate Michael Dakin has ordered a common assault charge against a former Byron-based policeman be dropped after an altercation involving a naked youth in Byron Bay three years ago.