As a child growing up in the 60's we learnt about the School of the Air formed to help children who live on outback stations, get an education. Back in those days it was done via long distance radio.
Last week we had the good fortune to sit through a science class held in the School of air.
The teacher has 2 computers - one is a blackboard and the other is their daily lesson. The teacher was conducting an experiment and it was unbelievable the enthusiam displayed by the children.
One of the children lives on a property that is 220,000,000 acres. No wonder he can't get to school on time - his motorbike (not horses anymore) runs out of fuel.
I must say I truly admire these dedicated teachers who have to conduct the same lesson 3 times a day to reach all the children. Lessons are prepared and posted in 2 week blocks and even assignments are completed.
To say i was excited is an understatement. Only in Australia would they come up with a solution to the tyranny of distance.
Two maybe three times a year the education department pays for them to come together for sporting gatherings and also to go on school camps.
Finally a rest day from all the travelling we have been doing.
When we left home on the 10th Nov we drove during the night and all we had was rain, rain, and more rain. After driving all night and most of the next day we arrived in Eungella National Park. We drove up a mountain and became one with the clouds. Clouds that poured so heavily with rain. After checking in to a loively cabin, we did have a very small gap in the rain to go to the park and look arround. But the rain came and we were housebound.
The next day we made tracks north and joined the Overlanders Highway. What a long and magnifiecent drive it was.
The scenery just kept changing and changing. We finally reached Mt Isa after a nother long day but it was worth it. The rocky outcrops, the cliffs, the sandy soil, the small country communities.
The list is endless. We stayed in Mt Isa for 2 nights and drove around the city (being a mining town nothing much to see). They have a lovely lookout that looks over the lights of the city to the bright lights of the mine.
A bit on the rough side Too.
On the next leg of our journey we travelled even further distances between ciivilasion.
We always start out early soi had a chance to do a sunrise photo to share with you.
We stopped at small towns (some with only a handful of buildings. Took photos and drove on.
Windmills to bring the bore water to the surface were everywhere
We arrived at the border of Queensland and New South Wales and did the touristy thing of taking photos with the border poster.
Another 3 hours and we reached Tennant Creek. Red soil, excessive heat and some very intoxicated people. Noisy and quite frightening to say the least. We drove out to a sacred site called the Pebbles. Sacred indigenous site for women. Truly magnificent and peaceful.
So now that is enough to whet your appetites.
Unfortunately all this driving and lack of exercise is beginning to make its presence known.
Still have more mileage before the trip is over.
Now we have to contend with flooded creeks and maybe some road closures.
Finally I have released the stress. When people do one last thing that breaks the camel's back, well they have and in doing so have freed me from the stress.
Maybe I will have relapses and maybe not. But I have learned many valuable lessons along the way.
Thank God for my faith and my wonderful Sparks friends who have gotten me through.
I have had such a wonderful day today and wanted to share with you all.
Now some of you will read this and think small things amuse small minds - so be it.
A friend of mine is house sitting in the country close to where her son works. Today we decided to visit her. She took us to where he works.
He works in a processing plant for carrots.
Now I had no idea how much work is involved in bringing the humble carrot from the farm to the table.
They are picked, washed for quite some time to remove most of the mud and rocks. Then put on a processing line and washed and washed and cleaned and then washed again. After going through many conveyor belts of washing and grading and washing again they are suited into sizes and all qualities. Finally after being checked they are bagged and processed ready for the supermarket etc.
Honestly I had no idea at all how much work is involved. And what do the farmers get - a pittance of what the supermarkets get. Oh what a shame after all the hard work and uncomfortable working conditions. (low temperatures and lots of cold water)
I am grateful to our hard working farmers.
So next time I eat the humble carrot I will remeber the hard work that went into getting it ready for my table.
Hope you enjoyed reading about my very different day.