My home town Sawtell has just been recently nominated in research by the University of New England as the most desirable/livable town in NSW, and second nationally to Mt Beauty in Victoria. Fantastic – we know its great to live in and to visit. But these surveys can be a bit dodgy. Most of the top 10 places in NSW were on the mid and far North Coasts of NSW. I think the researcher from Armidale comes down the mountain to go surfing or something like that and has a built-in bias! (Just joking). Alternatively, in a survey of the best 100 towns in Australia by Australian Traveller Magazine, Sawtell did not even get a look in. Admittedly, the second survey was for towns you would most like to take an hour out of your journey to visit. From that point of view, Sawtell is a no-brainer – 5 minutes off the highway, great beach next to a great village with loads of character, fig trees up the middle of the street, great cafes, art deco cinema, headland with views over Bongil Bongil NP to the south. So why it didn’t make the list is beyond me. Yet another conundrum in the rich pageant of life.nSpeaking of rich pageant, just to do my bit to promote the town, I have attached a recent photo of the main street during the Chilli Festival in July. There will be another street closure in October for the International Buskers Festival. This is a great event – usually three or four performance areas and packed crowds enjoying great fun. If you are in the area, drop in to town!