16.10.10 Well, I have been a bit slack on this. I am in
Sydney, and have been here two weeks. I must confess that I haven't
been and done too much around here - I have grown an aversion
to big cities and towns over the past couple of years, and it
took moving back to the country to realise the fact, that indeed,
I am a country boy at heart. When you look at a map of Australia,
and look at where the population is, it's like a lot of paddocks
full of sheep. And I've noticed that, whilst on the road as well.
People packed into caravan parks like cattle in a yard waiting
to be taken to market. Even the freecamp areas are packed full,
when you can in most cases find a nice little isolated spot down
the road ........
I guess for most of us, we strive in our working life to amass
our possessions and our material things, and that's fair enough.
I was no different to anyone else. And then when we had to go
thru a loved ones estate, and dispose of much of it, because it
was personal to them, and of not a lot of interest to anyone else,
I started wonder about what it was all about. I found when I sold
up, that I had a house full of stuff, that I wondered would I
miss when I offloaded it. It went, I sold, I hit the road, and
the answer is NO. I know that I have no chance of retrieving my
42" plasma from my mum, and I think the few things that the
kids did claim I can kiss goodbye to, but let's be realistic,
it ain't ever gonna fit in my 30' 1x1 on wheels. Yep, I swapped
a 4x2 on 700 sqm for a 1x1 with Australia as my back yard.
And so for most of us, we wont ever leave the material world,
and we wont experience the joy of the freedom that you get in
the bush, the lack of pressure of time, the space, the fresh air.
And we will travel overseas on our holidays and see all the things
that man has done to the earth over the centuries, and marvel
at how beautiful they did it then compared to the crass structures
that are forced upon us today. But how many will actually forgo
their 4 and 5 star comfort, to step into the backyard that is
their country, and witness the amazing beauty that mother nature
has provided us with, and then, in the snap of a heartbeat, can
turn on the harshest of conditions to challenge us with.
I confess to NOT being an overseas traveller, and I am probably,
at least in the eyes of some of you, the poorer for it, and in
truth, that may be the case. However, this last 10 months has
in many ways been the richest experience that I could have embarked
on. I have seen Dinosaur footprints, I have been inside cave like
holes in the ground that were created as ancient lava tubes, I
have seen the beauty of a desert in bloom, and I have had to deal
with the might of too much water in the driest part of Australia.
And that's not even scratching the surface. And you know, you
don't have to rough it if you don't want to. And you don't have
to leave the bitumen. But if you do, you see more than you ever
dreamed that you would see.
I was going to tell you about how I got to Sydney from Marburg.
But I have to get myself ready, for you see, tomorrow night, I
board that big silver bird, and fly to Hawaii to attend my daughters
wedding, and to spend a few days having a look around. No doubt
I shall be spellbound.
Speak to you in week or so.
Just read my last entry ...... Geez, he does go on, doesn't he?
So what's happened since then. The trip to Hawaii was good, (I
don't like being cooped up in metal cylinders - read aeroplanes).
We arrived at 9.30am, and at 11am, we were in a car, touring around
the island. It is amazing how similar the island, that is the
main island, is to areas of Queensland, which are also the result
of volcano action.
Tuesday saw us visiting Pearl Harbour, and the Memorials to the
memory of the thousands of servicemen who lost their lives in
the 1941 attack.
Wednesday was the day that my daughter Tanya married Adam, and
what a wonderful evening that was.
A visit to the Military museum was a must, as were the Trolley
Bus rides that were a cheap transport solution to seeing some
of the tourist spots. And then Saturday, it was back to Sydney
to pick up the van, and to prepare for the trip back to Perth.
From Sydney, I wound my way down to Canberra, and a visit to the
Australian War Memorial. Also, the main purpose of the trip, to
visit a student from years ago, and a family friend in Julie King.
Then on to Wagga Wagga, and eventually Angeston in South Australia,
where I caught up with friends Kevin and Liz Linke.
I had filmed the Nullarbor on the way over, but with a new camera
and windscreen mounted camera mount, I was disatisfied with my
previous work, and so the plan was to re-film the trip and replace
the images in the already completed video. I had also had a new
spot to check out, courtesy a tip from one of my customers.
And so, I left the Eyre Hwy and followed a dirt road 14kms north
to Koonalda Homestead Ruins, where I camped for the night, before
exploring the old homestead. This was a stopover in the days when
the Eyre Hwy was a dirt road, and the remains of about 40 old
cars were stored on the property after breakdowns, rollovers and
general motor vehicle deaths.
Then I chose to follow the Old Eyre Hwy for the 85kms to Border
Village. From here, it was a reversal of the trip East in January,
as I now revisited the caves and Eyre Bird Sanctuary, re-shooting
my original footage.
I spent 3 and a half days on the Nullarbor, before finally returning
to Perth, arriving last Friday (5th November) at Karrinyup Waters
And so, the journey was complete, with 44,000 kms completed, many
of them on dirt and outback roads towing my 30' caravan. I am
eternally grateful for the company of Lesley Bray and her photographic
passion and genius, and am amazed that she stayed to the end -
there were a few occasions where we got into a spot that I am
sure sent un-nerving images of previous experiences that she had
been involved in, rushing through her brain. Thank you young lady.
Please visit her website to view her wonderful images.
Homestead and Cave Pics - Nullarbor Plain
TRIP VIDEOS 2010
Desert In Bloom
- North Queensland
Telegraph Track - Qld
Hwy - Qld
Gulflander - Normanton - Qld
War Memorial - NSW
O Bourke Hotel - before the fire
The Ant Ordeal - Bourke
Moffat - Top Shelter Shed - Carnarvon NP
you would like to contact me or email
your thoughts or comments, please feel free to do so. I would
love to hear from you
more photos, visit Lesley's site. Queensland,