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History surrounds us…..

1 Nov

In this very young nation, we tend as a whole, to be focussed on looking forward and only remembering snippets of our short colonisation history.

Older countries such as England or Italy revere their past, and even the good ‘ole USA pays homage to the early settlers with much more fanfare than here in Oz. The older city’s of our great nation have monuments dotted around and some truly wonderful examples of colonial architecture. But one area that we tend to shun is cemeteries. These are archeological sites where no digging (creepy) is required.

Overseas’ it is seen as quite normal to make a wax rubbing of a persons headstone, whether they be famous, infamous or that the headstone is unusual. Here in Australia, there are only a handful of groups that participate in this art of recording the past. I am aware that there are only a relative few famous headstones that can be viewed or rubbed, however there are small, obscure grave sites dotted all over the wide brown land, and they tell stories of hardship, boom and bust and diversity. Next time you’re in the country and you see a small grave site, take a five minute break and have a look. It’s not disrespectful, after all your just stopping by to say gidday.

The following image was taken in a relocated cemetery near the Qld/NSW border that had been moved for the construction of the freeway. Headstones in this location dated as far back as 1824, a long time in our short history

Coffee time !!

19 Aug

When you walk around almost any part of Australia, be it urban or rural, it is quite easy to see we have learnt something most important from migrant Europeans. We realise the importance of coffee. Australians regularly on masse take to the pavements and verandahs of our most scenic, our most bustling and our most peaceful locations to pay homage to the bean. Of course whilst partaking in an espresso, latte or what ever is coffee de jour, we socialize, take time to smell the roses(or coffee), read the paper or just relax. For me strolling along the beach or walking up a hinterland path with the trusty Nikon along for the ride is made so much more special by concluding this restful pastime  with a well made cappuccino from talented and friendly Barista. Of course we are becoming spoiled for choice here on the sunny Gold Coast, and there always seems to be a special cake to tempt you to linger that bit longer. Hooray I say to those wonderful European migrants that bought this civilised ritual down under.