Saturday, 14 July 2007

Dinner with Dawn Fraser!

What a surprise Barcaldine (Barky to those who know) has turned out to be. We arrived here yesterday after a leisurely drive from Emerald passing through a town called Jericho which has the most fantastic drive-in still in operation with about thirty outdoor speakers and a great covered area with hammocks to lounge in to enjoy the show .If only we could have stayed for the show. They also have a great museum in the back of the post office – free of charge but a donation would be great and across the road sculptures to depict the 40 year treck of the Israelites to Jericho. Absolutely fantastic and no vandalism or graffiti to be seen.
Barcaldine is so friendly, you feel like you have stepped back in time in the best possible way. On Friday night at the caravan park there is free billy tea and damper (the best we’ve tasted), supplied by Tom Lockie who runs Artesian Country Tours and talks about his tour, telling ripper yarns and bush poetry. He says even his lies are true and we believe him. Then there is musical entertainment from Graham Rodger who is well renowned as a country singer and has won many awards at Tamworth. It was a great night.
Today we explored Barcaldine and went to a museum which opens at 7am every morning except Christmas Day and Good Friday. We’ve never seen anything like it and they even had an iron lung! I can’t begin to describe what they had in this place you’ll hear about it when we come home. Admittance via an honesty tin of $3.00 each. Nearly two hours later we emerged thinking we could spend another two hours and hardly notice the time.
We had a steak in one of the local pubs. There are plenty – some rebuilt after a number of fires – one in 1909 destroyed 6 pubs, after that they formed a local fire brigade – good move! Considering the quality of the transport to the fires it comes as no surprise to find out that there were many other equally catastrophic fires over the years to follow!
Whilst we were sitting on the veranda enjoying our lunch some local lads about 13 years old rode past and said “g’day, how you going! as they rode past to play league footy. The pub is directly opposite the present site of the tree of knowledge where folklore says the Labor Party was formed – well next week THEY’RE MOVING IT TO BRISBANE to put it in a glass cabinet – beurocracy strikes again!
Everyone in this town is on for a chat – the butchers were in a hurry to go home ‘cos they only get Saturday arvo and Sunday off, but they were still up for a chat as we bought some meat for tomorrow night. The lady in the patchwork shop was chatty too (probably ‘cos I helped the local economy quite a lot – well she was having a 25% off sale).
After lunch we went to the Australian Workers Heritage Centre – fantastic as well and the rest of the afternoon was gone.
Our park is the stop for a huge group of Winnebago travellers and the park turned on the same entertainment as last night and a sausage sizzle. Dawn Fraser is travelling with this group so yes we did have dinner with her. She has the biggest German Shepard I have ever seen so she is a very safe traveller – great lady, most unassuming. The mayor also came to dinner and spoke to us all, we were in very good company tonight all round.
If you can come to Barky allow plenty of time, there is so much to see, we’ll be back!
Off to Longreach tomorrow.

We love hearing from you as you read our blog ---- great to hear from Glen and Brenda -- you have to do this too!


Pete and Dawn said...

Hello Mummy and Daddy,

35 days left to our great adventure now!!!!! YAY!!

You have been extremely busy! Aren't they moving that tree to brisbane because it is dead??? Nice picture of the fire truck! Very impressive! I will try and get some photos of our big fire the other day to send to you!

Not too much news here! Had Wallie and Stainy over last night and today! Good times!

Look forward to hearing more from you!

Stocky said...

Hi guys, good to hear that you are alive and kicking, APC and myself were starting to get worried that nothing new had appeared on the blog for a few days. You have probably heard that we had a fatal fire in Batman ave last wednesday night wherwe a 31yo male was killed. More will emerge later as to the cause but I don't think it was an electrical fault. Chris & I only have 67 days to go before embarking on our little tour, I wish we only had the 35 that Pete & Dawn had. Well have a good time, and Ian keep looking for potential sites for our chain of Bra Shops.
Love Stocky & Chris

bloss said...

hello campers!
just thought i'd say hi!
love lots

The Bullringer and Roy the Boy from Yalleroi said...

Having grown up in Barcy (never with a "k') was pleased you enjoyed it. By the way the tree comes back to form a permanent monument, which apperently is going to be quite spectacular. Best wishes for the remainer of your trip.

The Bullringer and Roy the Boy from Yalleroi (you can find us at: