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Looking Back On My Trip On The Road

Looking back on my trip, as short as it was, we still covered a lot of ground from one side of the country to the other. This has left me pondering – Do Australians live up to the reputation that we have developed over the years from overseas visitors??

We are known for our true heroes like Steve Irwin and fictional characters like Crocodile Dundee. Products like Vegemite and the fact that kangaroos are boxing our streets. Our coast line consists of beautiful sandy beaches like Bondi and Bells and high rocky cliffs like The Great Ocean Road in the south and the Kimberley Cliffs in the north. This surrounds the vast, dry, harsh dessert of the Simpson, Gibson, Great Sandy, Great Victoria and the Chanel Country. These deserts makes up the majority of our land.

The answer is simply “Yes”.

I’m not saying that we don’t have heroes in our cities, you only have to visit somewhere like a hospital, a police station or a school and you’ll find plenty. I’m talking about the iconic true blue, dinky di, she’ll be right mate kind of Australia that the foreigners love. It became more apparent the further into the outback we drove. The harsher the land, the tougher it is to survive.

We drove through a lot of little towns. Each little town tells its own story. You often get a clue as to the character of the town by their Welcome signs.

Other signs will tell you exactly where you are or the population of the town.

Nowhere else in the world will you find an enormous Kangaroo with Vegemite or a giant Cockatoo.

The architecture can vary from the grand to the humble but all made by hand. The stonemasons and timber workers must have worked long, enduring hours.

You will find a pub in every town. Sometimes it is the only building in town.

In just a few days we drove through a contrast of conditions that all require the determination and hard work to survive. At first there were drought-stricken regions where the ground had turned to dust and there was little life left. We then drove through an unrelenting downpour causing flooding. This too can come with dire consequences by washing the soil away, damaging crops and the destruction of the livestock’s well-being.

We continued to drive through lush green pastures where just the right amount of rain had brought it back to life but around the corner, we saw the bush that had been ravaged by a bush fire, destroying everything in its path then slowly coming back to life.

It was quite the adventure and reinforced that the Outback Aussies are bred tough, hard working and can survive when mother nature throws all that she’s got at them. They have that larrikin sense of humour and dry wit that keeps us laughing and the strong bond of comradery that holds us together when the chips are down.

I am proud to be Australian and feel very lucky to live in this great country.

Keep Smiling and Happy Sewing

Heidi Ho