The road ends at the Wreck.
The road ends, the bay stretches out in front of you and sticking out of the ocean, not far off the beach, is The Wreck.
The ship, the Wollongbar, sank here in 1922. A cyclone pulled her loose from the old Byron Bay pier and she hasn’t moved since.
Fortune, as usual, favors Byron. When first the Pier was dismantled, leaving the bay clear. And second, when the Wreck was left, half buried. The sand built up around her and it formed an awkward reef. Now, with a solid south swell, boilers turns on. And when the seas are calm you can clamber up and work on your bombs.
It’s a reference point and I surely take it for granted. It’s little more than a rock wall at the end of a car park, a meagre patch of grass and a park bench; but each day this little spot plays host to hoards of people.
They’ll perch wherever they’re comfortable and they’ll take photos or play drums, they’ll laugh and drink beer and scratch bare feet into the earth as the sun dances on the water.
The tourists and the alcos and those on a lunch break; all sucked in by the sounds of the waves painting pictures.
There’s no concourse or tiled walkways, there’s no coach parking… thankfully.
Just some friends and some beers and the sea.