Lungfish pops up to say thank you
HER world was a different place when she opened her eyes yesterday morning but Tanzi Smith remained the humble, feet-on-the-ground individual we have come to know.
“I woke up and I felt like I feel every other morning. Then I began to realise I don’t have to do those things I usually have to do.”
Realisation that a three-and-a-half year campaign had ended gradually dawned on the environmental engineer who put her career on hold to take on the State Government system – and win.
Read more: Garrett rejects Traveston dam
She got the news outside a Brisbane federal court on Wednesday afternoon when a mobile phone owned by television reporter lit up with a two-letter text message.
It read “No”.
“It has been a privilege to be part of this. So many have given so much of their time and themselves,” Ms Smith said yesterday.
“I don’t think any of us did it because we wanted something else to do. It has definitely changed my life.”
A PhD on the sustainability of community projects, which she started work on in 2005, can finally be finished.
“Yesterday, I was thinking, compared to this, finishing my PhD should be easy.”
She was also entertaining thoughts of getting involved in the inevitable campaigns that will arise from Anna Bligh’s desalination alternative to the dam.
“I would like to share with those people the information we have about the alternative.”
Ms Smith was more disappointed than offended by Premier Anna Bligh’s reaction to Federal Environment Minister Peter Garrett’s decision.
“All along, since she became premier, she had so many opportunities to be our leader and stand out from the pack and look at the options that were sustainable. Things people could be proud of.”
Yesterday was a day of pride for Tanzi Smith and fate decreed it should be marked in a special and fitting way.
About midday she slid into a kayak with anti-dam protagonist Glenda Pickersgill and pushed off into the Mary.
As Ms Pickersgill picked up a call on her mobile phone, a head popped out of the water, uttered an indescribable sound, waited for a moment and slipped back into the water.
“It was a lungfish. I think it was saying thank you.”
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