This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

2003 Travels May 3

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SATURDAY 3 MAY     ADELS GROVE

I was on shop today. This was a little scary, as I was kind of solo, for the first time.

The current arrangement was that the main shop person for the day started at 10am, and finished about 6.30pm, closing the shop at 6pm and then counting and balancing the till. Whoever looked like having a fairly quiet early morning, looked after the shop until 10am. Or the boss did it.

For me that meant a nice, slow, start to the day, and a bit of a sleep in. The down side was that it also meant showering after tea, in the dark – and there were no lights in the showers.

B was supposed to be on shop/kitchen, but was hardly sighted through the day – don’t know where she got to.

I had to clean the amenities in the main building when I started, as it had not been done.

It was busier today. It was the weekend of the big Gregory Downs canoe races, so there were more people up this way, and some coming past to have a look at the National Park who often called in for ice creams and cool drinks. It was also the Labour Day long weekend.

Some campers arrived – without bookings. They had been disconcerted to find the camp areas at the Gregory really crowded, so came on here. We had plenty of space for them.

A couple came from Doomadgee to stay in a DBB tent. We’d worked with one of them at Doomadgee last year. So we heard all the school gossip from there – new Principal and Senior Master this year. A number of the staff we’d known had moved on. The secondary girls’ teacher had been raided and found in possession of contraband, so she had left. They said the school had deteriorated from last year – very few students attending. Apparently the DP had received an award for services to aboriginal literacy – possibly on the strength of John having organized for the literacy tests to be done properly and training the kids for being tested, so the results appeared to have improved. What a joke! They said she was now away down south on extended leave – and they thought the place was much better without her.

Other news was that the store manager (who had been absent when we were there, as the aftermath of an attack on the store) had returned, and caught – with indisputable camera evidence – the employee who had been cheating the store till, with help of her family members. It was calculated that her thefts  cost the store at least $60,000 – but she received a week’s community service order! Great deterrent to others.

With all the talking to the couple, I only entered $2.80 on the EFTPOS charge, instead of $280! So the till didn’t balance at the end of the day. The boss found the error. I saw the man at dinner and organized for him to come by the shop in the morning and pay. That was a lesson to me, to try to really concentrate on what I was doing!

My operated-on leg was hurting a bit, from all the standing.

Recent days had been windy, so there were leaves all over the verandas. Some of the trees appeared to be dropping their leaves for “winter”. Up here, I think that is determined more by soil moisture than by temperature.

Resize of 06-01-2003 04 Grove still fairly unspoiled.jpg

Lots of leaf litter on the ground in the Grove

John was on yard duties and filled some spare time by painting the downpipes on the new building – green, to tone in with the rest of the structure.

Lulu was successfully drinking from a temporary “bottle”. Good news. If she survived long enough, she would be taken to the wildlife rescue service in Mt Isa, next time someone was going who could take her.

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