The Nullabor, the name has always irritated me because it is such an enigma to what you actually find. The vast ancient region was named in August 1865, while an explorer was travelling from the east across the Hampton Tablelands, along the most arid of sections. E. A. Delisser in his journal named both the Nullabor and Eucla. This was how the largest limestone karst in the world received its European name. Its meaning is found in the Latin Nullus Arbor (It seems Delisser spelt it Aus’ style) the meaning is however ‘No trees/plants’. This is simple a misconception as the vast region is most certainly not treeless.
To travel Across The Nullabor is an aspiration and the adventure of a lifetime for many Australians. It is a tour we have done a few times, quite a few, in the last decade or so and it is a tour that I love. Currently we are parked up on the edge of the Nullabor preparing to do the trip again. It is 1500klm of adventure along the longest stretch of straight road in the world, any bend becomes a talking point. I once wrote a small travelogue on our first adventure … it was just so much fun and it has continued to fascinate me each time we embark out from the edge of the Nullabor.
We all have a story to be told, a book lurking within our mind and many of us promise ourselves one day that we will write that story. Few of us do, even fewer of us publish the tale and many of us give up on the dream when faced with the inherent effort and problems and for a myriad of other reasons.
I was born a city girl, one who grew up in the bush on the edge of the city, on the wrong side of the river my Great Grandparents would say. My Grandfather crossed the Georges River to the wilder south side of Sydney near a century ago, despite the advice of his parents. He built a home for his family amongst oyster leases, fishing huts, native camps and Chinamen who worked in those wonderful Chinese gardens in the cities of yesteryear. It was on the southern edge of Sydney in the 1920’s at Oyster Bay. Things have changed a lot since then … it is now considered millionaires row and the beautiful isolated peninsula is a much sort after suburb.
While we are preparing to point our noses east across the ‘Nullabor’ once more, (colonial spelling here), having dawdled around the shores of the SW corner of Western Australia, there is a history here that has become more evident. It is an unexpected tale perhaps. We have all heard of Australia’s whaling history, where the giants of the sea were once harvested indiscriminately along our shores and particularly along the shores of the SW WA, while settlement and colonization crept across the land. The harvest that is believed to have begun around 1837 was huge and bountiful and it decimated the whale population leaving a lasting impression on places like Albany, Esperance and much of the south west coast in a vivid history. The industry lured the French and Yanks to our shores as their ships cargoed the convicts and then turned their interests to whales in season. On the return run back to their home port they took the bounty of our seas with them. This oceanic massacre however eventually led to the industries own demise as whale numbers declined steadily over the decades of indiscriminate hunting and killing. Continue reading
Being welcomed into the Albany Shire as a traveller and freecamping life-styler has been a great experience. We have spent two weeks in the region (and quite a few bucks) in exploring the towns, sandy tracks, shores and inlets of the beautiful region. Our friends, finding little welcome in recreational bush camps in Esperance Shire, joined us in Albany Shire and together we explored many of the sandy 4×4 tracks, inlets and bays looking for good fishing and camping spots as well as seeking out local pubs and eateries for a lunchtime feasts and roving snacks. It was a LOT of fun!
What we discovered also were traces of our ancient Australian Lore and pre-history in legend that dates back into the ice ages, the last of which was some 20,000 years ago. I love that Australia has such a long history evident in this region. I love that I am so close the bedrock of creation and I love seeking out all those wonderful legends of creation, which can be found simply in the land around us. Legends and Lore which I try to bring to readers in my novels of The Dreaming Series and the growing series of tales of The Spirit Children.
With the new year comes the time to organise and reflect on the year past. I’m deep into this now, organising my writing and busy editing past posts. I’ve been blogging and writing publicly now for a few years and I’ve been with WordPress for about 18 months. I must admit I find the WordPress site the easiest to negotiate… even when they occasionally get it pear shaped with the date stamp thing as with one or two past blog. There simply is no better, or easier way to stay in contact with family, friends and my readers, as well as those great adventurers who you meet constantly on the road. Like souls and others who are living the dream and holding life by its horns as they tour the country.
My latest project has been to gather up my postings into some order, mostly for my elderly Mum who is wanting to read these and can’t manage a computer. Hence… I have released a anthology of my blogs in a pricey full colour print and a cheap large e-book both with many full colour pic’s. It has been an interesting exercise for me.