Surfers Paradise. Saturday, 5pm.
From 77 floors up, you get some perspective on the world. I’m on the top floor of the highest building in the southern hemisphere, the Q1. (Named by a robot.) From here, you can look south, above the Gold Coast skyscrapers with their rooftop pools and forested penthouses, all the way to the border ranges and beyond – to a pale blue Wollumbin.
Normally, such heights give me vertigo. I’m susceptible to height sickness. The Cuban heels on my dress boots can make me feel nauseated, until I sip on a remedial shiraz. But here at the top of the glittering Paradise pile, I have no dizziness. Maybe that’s because this is a bar and, over the years, bars have made me comfortable with nausea.
Yes, from a height you gain perspective on things. I reckon that’s why the monks meditating atop the Himalayas are wise enough to know that true enlightenment means peace with all living things. It’s not the religion, stupid, it’s the height that makes you understand.
Normally, the current state of the world gives me ground-level depression: It’s a war on everything. But this highest bar in the land has ceiling-to-floor glass walls and you can see in all directions. Get high and get some perspective. I do like this bar.
To the north I can see the Nerang River, deformed by canals, straight-lining and right-angling its way through expensive suburbs, to suddenly fatten and push its way through the Spit to join the ocean.
It’s a big ocean and the slight bump of dune that separates that huge muscle of water from the bitsy business of humans seems small and vulnerable. If, say, the ocean were to flex its muscle with…
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