This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

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2007 Travels August 31


M had another early start – to go on the hovercraft trip to the sunken wrecks of flying boats, in Roebuck Bay. These were partially exposed at particularly low tides.

The fifteen  ill-fated seaplanes landed here, in 1942, carrying Dutch refugees from the Japanese advance upon the then Dutch East Indies (Indonesia). Soon after landing, Japanese planes attacked and sank them, killing some eighty people. The wrecks are scattered over Roebuck Bay, but six of them can be seen at the low tides.

Broome was one of several places across northern Australia, bombed in WW2.

We were packed and about to leave, at 8.15, just as M arrived back from her excursion. At least, it had given her tent time to dry out a bit.

John had opted to refuel out at Roebuck Plains Roadhouse, thinking that, being on the main highway, fuel would be cheaper. It was in fact considerably dearer, at $1.50cpl.

It was not a long trip to Barn Hill. And not a particularly interesting one, either. Broome to Port Hedland is one of the most boring stretches of road in Australia, in my opinion!

Great Northern Highway between Broome and Port Hedland (Google)

The 9kms of unsealed track from the highway to the campground was in fairly good condition – a few corrugations in places.

The Barn Hill campground was on an operational cattle property – Thargoo Station. We opted for one of the unpowered sites, set on top of a low cliff, with a good outlook towards the sea. There was a low, sandy, scrubby area between the base of the cliffs and the beach.

Cliff top camp sites at Barn hill, and scrub area between cliffs and beach. The low hill is Barn Hill.

These sites were more spacious than those in the grassed, formal, powered section – which mostly had no sea outlook. $15 a night cost. If we stayed a week, the seventh night was free. There was room for M on the same site. Unlike the grassed camp area, there was no shade – but that was good for the solar panels to work. We could use the genset, if needed. There was a good breeze off the sea – very welcome. We also were able to hook up to water.

Our site with its ocean outlook

The amenities for this section of the campground were quite newly built, corrugated iron, unroofed – open to the sky – but roomy and totally adequate. In fact, they were better than the older amenities at the powered camp area. They were not too far from our site.

Barn Hill (Zoom). The line of cliff top camps stretches north from the main camp

To our surprise, being across the Bay from Broome, there was radio, some TV reception., mobile phone reception and thus internet! John was overjoyed!

There was also a small, rather rough, bowls green, much to John’s delight. Clearly, it was a very sociable camp ground.

After lunch, we went for a walk on the beach – going down a long wooden stairway to reach it.

The beach was wide with firm sand to walk on where the tide had receded. As expected. What was surprising, though, were the absolutely superb rock formations in places along the beach where the cliffs were closer, and higher. They were quite unique, not like anything I’d ever seen at a coast, before.

The beach at Barn Hill – looking north
Unusual coastal rock formations
Bushfire smoke and tide out

We took lots of photos. There was the big bushfire to the east, so the afternoon sun was smoky, as it had been in Broome. This made it even more photogenic.

We decided this place was wonderful – already loved it here!

John floated the idea that we plan a 2009 trip to these parts, to spend about a month at a time at each of here, Eighty Mile Beach, Ningaloo/Cape Range National Park, Denham. Sounded a great idea to me – maybe 5 months away, most of it spent lazing by beautiful coasts.

At night, we could see the lights of Broome across the Bay.

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2007 Travels August 30


Another “tourist” day – this time with M along too.

We visited the Japanese cemetery. Here, the majority of the graves were those of Japanese pearl divers, many of whom had succumbed to the “bends”, caused by diving deep then rising to the surface too quickly. Others were victims of drownings, especially due to the large cyclones of 1887, 1908 and 1935. Back then, there were not the advance cyclone warnings of modern weather forecasting, and pearling luggers could be caught out at sea by cyclones.

Japanese Cemetery

I really liked the headstones in this cemetery, mostly made out of the local rock, even though that fact probably reflected the poverty of those who came to Broome to work in the pearl industry.

Broome’s history has been an interesting one, with its rather diverse ethnic mix the result. The book “Broome Time”, which I re-read every few years, gives insights into the present day results of that ethnic mix, and the tensions and politics that ensue. It was written by two women writers, who spent a year living in Broome, getting to know many of the key people in the town, and recording their impressions in a diary format.

I know that progress and development confer positive benefits, but am sad that much of the atmosphere of “old Broome” is being greatly diluted. It is only 14 years since we first visited, in 1993, but the change since then is really marked.

We visited Matso’s Brewery and Cafe, to taste the locally made beers. Matso’s was housed in one of the older buildings, and worth a visit just for itself. The structure began life in the early 1900’s, as a bank, and has been relocated several times. In some ways, it has survived against the odds. Now with its wide verandas on all sides, settled into lush gardens, it looks like it has sat here since its beginnings.

I had a glass of the dark ale, John tried the chilli beer. I really liked mine, but I don’t think home brewer John will be attempting beer chilli style!

At the Monsoon Gallery, next door to Matso’s, we saw an Ingrid Windram print – one of those I really liked, yesterday – framed up. Kimberley Moon – featuring boabs and a moon. It looked even better, and this time John liked it too. So we went back to the Windram Gallery and bought the print, unframed, plus another one, of a creek inlet, all aqua-green sea and white sand dunes. At home, John would mount and frame these.

Our two Windram prints

We attempted to walk up Kennedy Hill in order to see the view over Roebuck Bay and the old wharf area, but there was an aboriginal congregating point up there – much rubbish, broken glass and human excrement lying about. We felt too intimidated – and disgusted – to continue on to the top.

Broome certainly does present  aspects of our indigines that are unsavoury and a discordant theme in the modern tourist town that Broome tries to be. There appeared to be two segments of this population: the established Broome families, with permanent dwellings, some of whose members play significant roles in the town. And the transients from out of town, who create the disgusting camps, some of who have followed relatives sent to the jail here. One can at times see them clustered outside the jail walls, and hear them talking across the fence to inmates – and occasionally throwing things over to them! Other transients are refugees from dry communities further out, and in town for the drinking.

John and M had a Subway lunch. I wasn’t in the mood for that.

We visited a supermarket to do a food stock up. Then to the butcher to redeem the $20 butcher voucher bowls prize. Exchanged it – and another $7 – for four good looking Scotch fillet steaks.

To the seafood outlet to buy a kilo of frozen prawns.

Even in our modest way, we had contributed quite a bit to the local economy!

Back at camp, we took down the awning roof, to avoid having to do it when wet from condensation in the morning.

M went to the Mangrove Hotel for tea, and to watch the Staircase to the Moon, moonrise over Roebuck Bay, from there. John didn’t want to spend any more money to eat “out”, so we had two of the steaks bought earlier. M reported that it had been too smoky for the moonrise to be much good.

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2007 Travels August 29


I had extracted a promise from John that, after his focus on bowls and fishing of the past few days, today would be a dedicated “tourist” day for us.

M had left early, to go on a seaplane flight north, over the Dampier Peninsula, and then on a boat trip to the Horizontal Falls. These were at Talbot Bay, well to the north of Derby. The unique “falls” are caused by the really high and low tides of the area causing a bank up and rush of water through narrow openings to larger bays, creating a waterfall effect. She had booked with one of the companies offering transport to moored boat bases, from which the intrepid could travel by small boat close to, and when conditions were right, through, the Falls.

Warnings and prohibitions abounded around Broome!

We went to the Shell House which, as the name indicated, was both a museum of a massive collection of different shells, and a source to buy same. John wanted to investigate buying some pearl shell, to use as inlay in his woodwork. He was able to buy some shells. I bought a half shell that held three pearl “lumps”, like little pearls, in a semi circle near the rim. It was an illustration of how pearls formed and appealed to me as a “different” ornament to go on our mantle shelf at home.

John bought a little conch like shell necklace for his younger daughter. Hard to describe, but a little shell, edged with some gold (plating?) in parts, hung on a fine chain. Delicate and very pretty. I bought one too – for me!

Then, at China Town, I exchanged some books in the very good second hand book shop there.

At a nearby tourist shop, I bought myself a polo shirt with a Broome-related logo on the pocket. Had to work hard to resist buying a couple of gorgeous sarongs.

Next stop was the Windram Art Gallery. We had seen copies of the work of this Broome based artist elsewhere, and wanted to look at the range that was in her own dedicated gallery. I loved the style of her works – seemed to me to be evocative of the many varied faces of the Kimberley and area around Broome itself. Obviously, boabs featured prominently in some of the works.

An unexpected “find” at the Windram Gallery was the decorative pool at the front, which inspired me to think about redesigning our fishpond at home. This one was a large rectangle, fairly shallow, with decorative stones lining its base. There were very large goldfish cruising lazily about, with a few feature plants and larger rocks. Lights lit it at night. It was beautiful landscaping and I’d loved to have been able to import it to home, just as it was!

At this point, John got sick of browsing shops – never his favourite pastime, unless it was for something he wanted! He said his back hurt, so we retreated back to the van for lunch.

In the afternoon, drove around the Gantheaume Point to explore the natural features around there – as opposed to the “cultural” features of this morning shops!

The modern light that replaced the original light house at the Point

We spent more than an hour, scrambling around the unusual rock formations, exploring and taking photos.

There were such strong contrasts at the Point, between the rust red rocks and the opaque aqua coloured sea.

Special features out there were the fossilized dinosaur footprints and Anastasia’s Pool – a tidal bath carved out of the rock by a resident of the light house keeper’s cottage, in the 1920’s. Supposedly, this was a place for his arthritic wife to exercise.

Anastasia’s Pool
Dinosaur footprints

From the Point, we could look out across to the long expanse of Cable Beach.

Cable Beach – and plane departing from the Broome airport

John wanted to visit the Broome wharf. On our 1993 first visit to Broome, a walk on this jetty had been one of the few activities we were able to undertake. Most of the several days were spent sheltering in an on-site caravan from extremely heavy unseasonal rain. We saw more of the green tree frogs that lived in the surrounds of the van, than we did of the sights of Broome!

Fish dinner……

We found that security, in this post 9/11 age, meant that we could no longer wander out along the Broome wharf. But there was a narrow walkway out alongside part of it that was open to the public, so we did that. Not the same and not as interesting or leisurely, though.

Not the same appeal as walking on a normal wharf…..

We did find a fresh fish and prawn sales outlet out there, and bought some prawns to have for tea.

M arrived back late in the afternoon from her adventure. I had never before seen her so excited  and ‘high” on an experience. She absolutely loved it. The plane flight north had given her excellent views over the Dampier Peninsula. The seaplane had landed by a barge/pontoon, where they transferred to boats for the trips back and forth through the Horizontal Falls, which she said had been exhilarating. It was not a cheap trip, costing several hundred dollars, but had been worth every cent she said.

We had decided not to do that trip, because of the cost for two people. I had said to John that I wouldn’t mind (too much) if he wanted to go with M, but he had balked at the expense. Maybe one day……


2007 Travels August 28


Just messed about camp in the morning. John slept late.

After an early lunch, it was off to bowls – more serious today than yesterday’s Scroungers. John and I came second in a Pairs game and won a $20 butcher’s voucher – a useful prize.

The plan was to go to the Town Beach in the late afternoon, to settle in there and watch the moon rise, together with an eclipse of it. I wasn’t sure what effect the eclipse would have on the famed Staircase to the Moon reflections on the ocean, but we were looking forward to it.

I was outnumbered two to one, on the subject of tea, so a take away chicken was purchased, to eat during our vigil.

The chook was awful. It was too smoky to be able to see the actual moon rise. So we went back to camp and saw the eclipse from there. A bit of an anti-climax, really.

Bushfire smoke across Roebuck Bay

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2007 Travels August 27


After much debate with myself, this morning I went back to the bead shop in China Town and indulged in quite a stock up. I planned to make really good bracelets for the females of the family, as well as ones for M and me, and perhaps some anklets as well.

In Broome, one’s thoughts tend to turn to jewellery, because of the ever-present reminders of the pearling industry to be found. Pearls were responsible for the early growth of the town, and both directly through the modern pearl farms, and indirectly through tourism, have helped sustain it in modern times.

The pearl oysters found in these waters are very large ones, which meant that, from the start of wild oyster harvesting in the 1860’s, some large pearls could be found. But also, the large shells were an excellent source of mother-of-pearl shell, used for things like buttons and handles for cutlery sets.

Diving to gather oysters became the province of Japanese divers, adding to the multi-culturalism of modern Broome. In the first part of the 20th century, an exemption to the White Australia Policy was made, to continue to permit the Japanese divers in Broome.

The mother of pearl industry was decimated by the post WW2 development of plastics, but from the 1970’s, pearl farms concentrating on producing pearls for fine jewellery developed and efforts to promote this have seen a change in the image of pearl  jewellery and a revival in its popularity. The several outlets in Broome featured some superb items. I could easily spend a small fortune here – but to acquire some of the loveliest things would need one!

M and John went off together, fishing, from Cable Beach. They did not catch anything.

Broome streetscape

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2007 Travels August 26


It was very damp in the mornings, here. Sea mist or dew? There was much condensation under the awning roof, which dripped copiously on the table and anyone trying to use same, for several hours in the mornings.

John had organized that we three would, in the morning, play Scroungers bowls at the Broome Bowls Club. It was pleasant enough. They started early, to avoid the heat, so there was still plenty of the day left, after.

After that, we went to the markets in China Town. Didn’t think much of these. Yesterday’s Courthouse Markets were far superior.

I had a quick browse in a beading shop in China Town. They had some lovely materials – very tempting, but I resisted.

China Town – John being bored while I browse shops….

We had a Subway lunch at the Paspaley shopping centre – named for the family that is synonymous with the pearling industry in northern Australia.

We found a brilliant art gallery in that area.  It carried a lot of works from local indigenous artists, as well as the general run of items geared to tourist interest. I bought a wonderful painting by Melissa Waina, from Kalumburu. It was black Bradshaw type figures on a red brown background. Very effective and “different”. Her father, Kevin Waina, was also a talented artist.

M bought one of Melissa’s works too. A bit smaller than ours – and cheaper too! She bought a soft toy blue heeler dog, for a friend. M already travelled with a similar kelpie toy sitting on her passenger seat.

I went for an afternoon walk on Cable Beach.

There were bad bush fires around Broome – lots of smoke obscuring the sunsets. Apparently the worst of these was a control burn that got away! Red faces somewhere!

We had tea from Zanders take away at Cable Beach. We walked there from the caravan park. It was quite a wait for our order, but M and John’s fish and chips were excellent, as was my calamari and chips.

It was lovely to sit on the foreshore, eating tea and watching the evening light on the sea.

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2007 Travels August 25


I went for an early morning walk on Cable Beach. It might be legendary and all that, but it is really just another beach. We have seen better. It does have vivid sunsets, and it does have camel rides, but…..

Cable Beach

Whilst walking I got chatting with another walker, a lady from Melbourne who was staying at the Resort for a long weekend. Nice to have the life of some people……

At least, out here, there did not seem to be the groups of alcohol affected, yelling, fighting indigines that were so evident in the town areas, especially at night. From our past experiences here, early morning walking in town would involve picking one’s way through much broken glass and other rubbish, including that originating in the human body!

We went to the Courthouse Markets – along with a lot of other people. The atmosphere there was quite festive and very tropical. The stalls are set up in the gardens surrounding the old Broome Court House, as the name suggests, under lots of beautiful old shady trees.

Some of the stalls here were of a much higher quality than is often found at weekend markets. There were some very good jewellery stalls with unusual, local-related items. I bought pearly shell pendants for the three daughters, and unusual dichroic glass pendants for daughter’s partner, and myself. These were done in shades of vivid blue and red-browns, so evocative of the colours of Broome.

Bought a lovely smelling bath soaps pack for the errant daughter in law – in case a Xmas gift for her would be needed.

Another stall had items based on satellite photographs of Kimberley places and a few others of interest. (This was before the era of Google Earth, Zoom etc). I was really taken with a satellite image of the Kimberley, mounted on a lightweight board. It cost $90. but I thought it would be a real talking point at home, and illustrative of the area we had travelled this year. The detail was great. That whole northern Kimberley actually looked much more rugged on the satellite photo than it did, travelling it on the ground!

The same stall had a magnet with a sat photo of Antarctica. It looked like a slightly convoluted pearly shell – most unusual, so I had to have that too.

We bought lunch at the markets where there was a good range of “ethnic” food choices.

Also bought fresh vegetable and some fruit there – excellent quality.

We drove to the town shops, because it was where I could buy the Weekend Australian. Got sidetracked, first, by a stall that was selling floor rugs and bought a small one for the van, to go in front of the bed to help prevent the sand and grit from these ungrassed sites, that was finding its way into the bed.

Roebuck Bay at low tide

Refuelled Truck – $1.44cpl.

Spent the rest of the afternoon at camp, reading the paper.

Our not-so-spacious site at Broome
Cable Beach again

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2007 Travels August 24


Managed a reasonably early start, having been able to stay hitched up.

Refuelled – $1.44cpl.

Fitzroy River from bridge at Fitzroy Crossing. Caravan Park on right

Checked out the free camp area at Ellendale as we passed, but of course M was long gone – although we did wonder if her plans had worked out as intended, and she had even been there. Won’t know till we get to Broome…..

Today’s drive was less interesting than that of yesterday – no dramatic scenery of distant and near ranges.

The only points to note, amid the dry and dusty grass and scrubland, were the crossings of the impressive Fitzroy River – at Fitzroy Crossing and again at Willare Bridge, closer to Broome.

Fitzroy River from Willare Bridge

At this time of year, the river was a small flow in the huge river bed. It was hard to believe how high and raging it could become in flood times. In 1993, I’d bought a postcard of the caravan park where we’d stayed last night – with only the elevated amenity block showing amid the floodwaters from the river.

The Willare Bridge was one of the long, single lane bridges that feature in this part of WA. Again, it was hard to credit that, at times, Highway 1 could be closed here by the river in flood.

Willare Bridge (Google)

We reached the Palm Grove Caravan Park, at Cable Beach, Broome, about midday.

M was already there, of course. From her overnight stop at Ellendale, she’d had a good head start on us. She had found Old Halls Creek and its surrounding area, interesting, and worth the visit. But she had driven out to explore some of the area and at Caroline Pool had felt quite intimidated by a group of locals who told her white fellas weren’t welcome there. She didn’t stay round to argue the point.

The caravan park sites were on the small side, gravelled, but adequate. The amenities were reasonably modern, and clean. It was not the most upmarket park we’d stayed in, by any means, and really didn’t justify the $255 we paid for the mandated week’s stay. But, hey, that’s Broome.

M’s site was across the access road from ours, so at least that was convenient.

We heard that two of the Cable Beach caravan parks, including this one, had been sold, to be turned into resort units. That would put the squeeze on caravanners to Broome, even more. It was really hard to find a vacancy in a caravan park here, in the winter months. The overflow area used at this time of the year, at a gun club, was even hard to get into. It is one of those areas that poses real dilemmas for accommodation providers: in the winter months, a few more caravan parks could be easily filled, but for the rest of the year there would be insufficient patronage to be viable.

We set up, then went to the Information Centre in town, to see what we could suss out.

When I say, in town, it is because Cable Beach and the main Broome town were separated by a few kms  of scrub and industrial land. The original town of Broome, and the modern one that has grown up around it, is located on a peninsula that juts into Roebuck Bay. The much more recent development of Cable Beach is located on the other side of this peninsula, facing out into the Indian Ocean.

Broome and Cable Beach (Google)

We drove around the town, looking at the changes since we were last here in 2000. There had been a lot of development and building since then. Broome seemed to be really booming – we thought this might be due to the offshore oil and gas developments. Even Cable Beach seemed to be growing rapidly – and not only tourist resort development, but housing as well.

For our Friday fish and chip dinner, we walked from the caravan park, a few hundred metres, to a van parked overlooking Cable Beach, which did a roaring trade in take away food. The prices were reasonable, the food excellent. It was very pleasant, sitting looking out over the ocean, eating our dinner. Great to be by the sea again!

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2007 Travels August 3


There was no power on at all today. I was glad that we hadn’t paid the extra $5 a day for that almost non-existent service. Our Chescold fridge ran well on gas, anyway, and M had been taking the Troopy for a drive often enough to charge up her batteries that run her Engel fridge.

M and John went off in the Troopy to drive to the  ruins of the old Mission at Pago. I had seen these before, and the Troopy only took two anyway. John  thought it was a good idea for M to have someone with her in these parts.

They reported back that the track was very bad now, and the ruins hard to find.

Pago Mission remains
Once was bread oven
The well at Pago

While they were away, I talked with Les’ wife for a while. She was on her own at the old shed, the various family members having left over the last couple of days. She said that the little female pup that I so liked was going to one of the white guests currently here – so I hoped that it would have a good life, after all.

Had a session in the phone box – not particularly pleasant in the heat! Now our movements were clearer, I could try to firm up some places to stay. Phoned our caravan park in Kununurra and booked us back on site there, for three nights from 18th.

The family’s house; the phone box. The heap of rocks marks where the tank and stand was, pre-cyclone.

Knowing that accommodation could be hard to get in Broome, at this time of year, thought I should sound out what might be available at Cable Beach – our preferred place to stay, simply because we had not stayed out there on previous trips.

The first park I phoned informed me, quite abruptly, that they were full, and that I should phone closer to the time to see if there was a cancellation. I did not like the tone or attitude – I was only asking on the offchance!

The next park I called said they could take us for a week, from 24th. They only took bookings for week long blocks of time, and only from Friday to Friday! Take it or leave it. We did not really want a full week in Broome, but seemed like there wasn’t much choice about that. I guess it made their reservation system easier to work…….

I took the offered week, from 24th. Maybe we could have a few days in Derby, before going there?

The Bushtracker people came in with another large haul of red emperor for their freezers. The exploitation of the fishing here was really annoying and saddening me. I was really cross that white southerners assumed it was their right to behave like this, and presume on the inherent reticence of the aboriginals, in charge of the place to challenge their blatant over-fishing.

Late in the afternoon, Les wanted John to drive him and Ruth into Kalumburu. His car had gone with some of the family to Broome, a couple of days ago. He clearly expected John to agree to this. John said no. I think Les was quite miffed. Eventually they went off with someone else.

The shed – still used as a residence, some of the time

So, overnight, there was no one here who wasn’t a guest. No one in charge…. No power. Nothing. The dogs barked and prowled a lot through the night.

We talked about what could come after Broome. John had  originally thought that we should go home via the desert: via Telfer, Kunawarritji and the Gary Junction Track to Alice Springs. That route had been in our sights for a while now, and was one we had not previously tackled. Now, he had changed his mind, saying we would stick to the coast, then go across via Kalgoorlie. Part of me was a bit disappointed – new territory always attracts – but part of me was relieved that I wouldn’t have to hassle about, trying to get a heap of permits to travel through the aboriginal lands of two states.

At night, I trekked back up to the phone box, and by torchlight – no illumination in the phone box – phoned son and dictated a list of fruit and vegies for him to buy in Kununurra on his way through to us.

I was so sick of the heat and grubbiness here. Sometimes it is a mistake to return to a place. We had a great time here, before, but it was not the same place now….

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2006 Travels September 26


I organized the bus and motel bookings for John’s Broome expedition. Booked him into the Roebuck Bay Hotel/Motel – thought the standard should be ok there, and it was central. He would have to taxi there from the airport where he would be leaving the 4WD.

The days were becoming more routine for me, with all the usual bits and pieces to be done.

I had to contact head office to find out which subbie firm would be doing the landscaping of the villages – R wanted to know. Landscaping?? The reply back was that this had not yet been decided. I wasn’t sure whether this meant the company had not been finalized, or whether it would be done at all. After all these camps were to be temporary – essentially to be removed once the railway was built. However, there was some talk that maybe part of one of the villages would be kept for ongoing maintenance crews to use – much like the Redmont Camp, near RV2,  was for the BHP railway crews.

The cementing work had begun. John was fascinated by the machinery and method. Essentially, the machine was able to lay paths without there having to be any of the usual form work. The machine just followed a set out string line and spewed out a path! Or veranda. Or whatever. Amazing. That sub-contracting company was mixing up its own cement on site. They could spew out a considerable amount of paving in a shift.

Resize of 10-09-2006 Paving 8

Machine laying a cement path onto the ground

I’d had to phone a hire company in Hedland and arrange for us to get a big portable light set up, because the cementers had decided they needed to work at night, due to the daytime temperatures being too high.

Resize of 10-07-2006

Completed veranda paths for bedroom dongas. Light tower at right.

Had my first Occ Health and Safety incident to report on today – and deal with first! There was a stack of roofing iron sheets not far from my office. P walked around the end of it, on his way to somewhere. He surprised a death adder sunning itself, and the snake lashed out and bit his boot. Then it slithered off across to the lay down area and slithered in between some, and up into the understructure of one of the dongas. P got a major fright, and I had to treat him for a short time for shock. My first Incident Report!

I was now no longer going to go to the toilet in between those dongas in the lay down area! Definitely did not fancy squatting down and finding myself eyeball to eyeball with a death adder! Would have to drive back to the Fly Camp, when necessary, and the company could damn well wear the time involved to do so!

John took BB to the afternoon plane, so was a bit late back.

At the van, I found the friendly monitor reptile that lived in the drainage pipe near our camp, curled up in a neat circle on top of the Chescold fridge, in the annexe. Unlike this morning’s death adder, this  was an acceptable type of reptile.

Resize of 09-26-2006 That monitor again

Such a long tail…….