OZZIE OUTBACK MURALS - LIFE BEFORE CELL PHONES, TEXTING AND TWITTER
I like people in the outback. They are more than good mates; they are real people. What you see is what you get without apologies.
Political correctness hasn't made it's way to the outback, and I hope it doesn't make a beachhead anytime soon. I would rather have a robust outback adventure any day of the week than tip toe through the tulips of the politically correct in large cities. The outback is what it is, and I hope it stays rough around the edges. It is one of last vestiges of freedom in the down under world called Oz.
Ozzies express themselves differently in the outback than they do in cities. Outback cool is unique. You wouldn't find a mural of drunk kangaroos with attitude anywhere in Australia other than in the outback.
These roos look like good mates enjoying their boots, hats, and beer. I don't know what a city roo would look like. A kangaroo in a tux outside the Sidney Opera House doesn't seem right. Somehow city slickers and kangaroos just don't go together.
I wonder what type of beer kangaroos like to drink. I don't think they would call their beer brewskis. Instead, I think they would call it a rooski or kangarooski. I can hear these kangaroos shouting, "Bartender, give me another rooski."
Kangaroos aren't the only one who spend time with their mates in the outback. Good food and great conversation grace this table. I doubt they are watching television while they eat, and there are no cell phones to distract. In the outback, the table is where you catch up with family and friends. In civilization, meals are more like pulling into a gas station and filling up your food tank. Eat fast and move on to more important things like texting all your friends. After all, your family will always be there if you should ever want to talk with them.
Ozzies are Johnny Come Latelies to Australia. They had a basic existence when they arrived downunder, and it hasn't been all that long since their arrival. They settled the southern perimeter of Australia transplanting English and European society to the new continent. Fortunately, outback development lagged behind the cities preserving more of the original flavor of Australia even to the present day. When you go into the outback, you sense what it was like in the good old days.
A billabong is not a tee shirt, swimsuit, or surfing attire. It is an outback pool of water - an oasis in a sometimes parched land. Some billabongs even have freshwater crocodiles. When you step into this billabong, you end up in a corrugated outback building. At least there aren't any crocodiles inside.
More billabongs, eucalyptus, egret, and a windmill on an outback homestead.
This mural time warp takes you into the world of the outback baker. The smell of fresh bread wafts out of the brick oven drawing the attention of hungry customers. Some things never change. Freshly baked bread is a near universal food that has charmed the noses and taste buds of the entire world for thousands of years.
It's hard to beat the feeling you get when you cook your supper over a campfire in the setting sun. Food tastes better when you are outback hungry after a hard day's work.
The railroad played an important role in the development of the outback in Australia just like it did in the USA. Rail makes it possible to easily transport large numbers of people and heavy equipment to remote locations, which is exactly what you need to do if you want to mine copper and other metals in the interior of Australia.
These rail workers don't seem very inspired. They are laying railroad ties and track which will facilitate the pilgrimage of city dwellers into the outback. Oz now has trains that can take you from coast to coast east/ west and north/ south.
One of the best things about the outback is that there is plenty of room for everyone and everything. Hong Kong is the opposite of the outback. As I walked the the streets of Kowloon, it was impossible to extend my arm and spin around in a circle without touching lots of surprised people. In Hong Kong, I counted people per square inch. In the outback, I talk about people per square mile. There are thousands of square miles without even one person.
The outback is heaven for people with claustrophobia. Space galore means your bubble can be a mile in every direction. In this mural, there is space for everyone including chickens, horses, dogs, and goats.
If you discount Red Back Spiders, the Fierce Snake and its venomous relatives, outback wildlife is fairly benign. A favorite of many people is the Goanna lizard. Google photos of the Goanna, and you will see a hodgepodge of magnificent lizards that are beautiful to behold. It makes you want to go-on-a safari just to photograph the Goanna.
Huge flocks on pink Galah cockatoos are a special treat for outback travelers. Hundreds of them line the power lines or forage for food on the ground. Mates in outback bars paint the town red when they have too much to drink, but they are no match for the Galah who paint the ground pink with their feathers.
There is no shortage of Magpie Larks in the outback. If you stop to enjoy a picnic, it won't be long before a hungry magpie comes for lunch.
The Kookaburra is more Australian than the Ozzies. The song of the kookaburra is extremely distinctive mimicking the sound of out of control laughter. Have a listen to a sound clip. KooKaburra sound clips
Going to the outback is a bit of a time warp where you do just fine without a cell phone, texting, or twitter. Close friends may be more than a dozen miles away. The outback isn't for everyone, but if you like wide open spaces, it's hard to beat.
Life is good.
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