Thrombolites are stone creatures from a different era. They look exactly like an field of round stones just below the surface of the water, and they hail back to 600 million years ago.
Often these white-ish “rocks” can be seen above the water but today a stiff wind (which is, thankfully, blowing the multitude of midges away) is blowing the waters of Clifton Lake against its eastern shores. The wind is also playing havic with the film crew’s sound equipment.
Film crew? Yes! A group of about 6 people are wandering about the pier built for Thrombolite viewing. There’s the on-air talking head girl looking mighty chilly in her windswept short sleeves (until the camera is turned on her, then you’d think it was a gorgeous summer day with only a playful breeze); there’s the park ranger Thrombolite expert, a stressed person with a cell phone and clipboard desperately asking his homebase to dig up file pictures of the Thrombolites exposed; a sound man whose boom is useless despite the wind- suppressing fur around it; the camera person trying to take interesting shots of “rocks” under reflective water; and the director who is trying to make something of this shoot.
The maid and the ranger walk back and forth along the peer while being filmed while we try to stay out of the way. Finally, when it looks like they are about to pack it up and fill in the rest back at the studio, we ask about them what’s up. (Certainly not the Thrombolites!) Turns out they are filming a travel show for Channel 9 (which apparently means something to an Aussie).
And, actually, since we seem interested, would we mind doing some reaction shots so they can show tourists interacting with the fascinating Thrombolites? So we do just that. The four of us stand and chat, pointing out interesting, ah, points, taking pictures and generally hamming it up for the camera. Soon they tell us that’s enough.
So, if you are ever watching a travel show about Thrombolites on Channel 9 in Australia, keep your eyes peeled. You just might see a second or two shot of four people on a windy pier. That would be us! Stars of stage and screen!