Sunday, July 31, 2011

Day Eighteen.....Barcaldin

O.M.G!!!!!!  Am I glad that we decided to rest at Jericho prior to tackling the 190 odd K to Longreach.

The trip took us around 3 hours with a couple of stops and I have to say it was the worst bit of road we have seen thus far.   Barely wide enough for two cars and as undulating as the Looner Park roller coaster, I forgot to turn on the UHF and consequently was a little caught out by the site of a road train in my side mirror as he was passing us at over 100k an hour....S...T I thought hang on and slow down to let him through.

Quickly turned on to station 40 in time to get the heads up from a tourist coach coming through.... promise to self to invest in a rearview camera to give us a little more warning. 

When we got to Longreach we saw the road train on the side of the road and it was only a little one... about 40 meters long.

We had a short stop at Barcaldin where we parked in front of the Artesian Hotel, the only one not to be burned down during the Shearers uprising in 1891.

Across the road was the Monument to the Tree Of Knowledge, an unusual structure but quite clever in design with varing lengths of wooden beams hanging from the ceiling which when the wind blew clanked together with a rather plesant timber (Ha! ha!)

Inside this Monument is located the Tree of Knowledge under which the beginnings of the Labor Union movement began.  

Not wishing to take away from this important piece of Australian history,I could nevertheless, not stop myself from wondering if there were any parallels to be taken from this vision...  The dead tree is supported by almost invisable guy wires like the strings of a puppet and I invisaged them to be not unlike the Trade Union Power Brokers silently dictating to the Labor Party...  I could almost hear the chimes sighing....

'Goodbye Kevin Rudd, 
farewell Neville Wran,
it's a long long way for Julia Gillard
so she better take care....

The fact that water is without doubt the most valuable and important commodity in the outback, it is therefore with interest that I took these photos of one of the first Windmills built to pump this precious liquid up from the depths.

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