Thursday, April 14, 2011
Another Country Drive
I had another day show judging this week. It was a long drive for me, almost a 300km trip!! I had a delightful time and saw some very nice stitching. The day started off really well for me, as I saw this Bustard as I was driving out of the property. They are curious creatures, wandering around the paddocks. Sometimes they are in larger flocks, other times, just the pair. The quality of this photo is awful, as I had to zoom in really well, even using the digital zoom, which makes it a little on the 'grainy' side.
The town I travelled to is called Wandoan. It really isn't a thriving town at the moment, but I believe in time that will change, as the coal seam gas companies move in and take what they want. I also understand that in the future it will be home to one of the largest open cut mines in Australia. One thing that is mined between the town of Miles and Wandoan is Bentonite - a white pastey clay, used in all sorts of things from agricultural applications to cosmetic formulations. Another feature that is common to most towns in our area are these large concrete grain silos. They are the first hint that you have almost reached your destination, and a symbol that this is also grain cropping country.
To travel from here to Wandoan is to drive in a northerly direction, and believe it or not, one crosses the Great Dividing Range, albeit a rather insignificant 'range'. But, it does mean a total switcheroo on where the rainfall run-off ends up. On this side, it eventually flows into the Murray/Darling system, but on the 'other side' it goes to the Burnett system, and out to sea at Bundaberg. A little further north is another small range, and that water flows to the Fitzroy system [a catchment second in area only to the great Murray/Darling system].
All of this land was discovered by the explorer Ludwig Leichhardt, and one can only wonder at his amazement when he happened across such wonderful grazing country. I have heard it said that rugby is the game played in heaven. Well, I believe it's possibly played somewhere in these fields. To me, this is God's own country - beautiful rolling hills with excellent natural pastures. I sincerely hope that when the mining/energy companies are finished with the land, they restore it to it's natural state!! Perhaps I'd better hop off my soapbox now.
I often have the opportunity to check out some of the exhibitors at these shows, and this year was happy to find a lady with lovely handmade soaps. She lives further to the west, and all of her wares were so beautifully presented. I couldn't resist buying just a couple things. You can see her products here: http://www.elliessoapblends.com/
I hope some readers find this post interesting. It was a difficult day for taking photographs, with intermittent showers, not to mention the feeling of being 'rushed'. I didn't want to dally too long, as I hate arriving home in heavy rain.