Other than the astonishing artwork on silos and murals in some of the country towns in the Southern Country Queensland landscape I was honestly taken aback by the beauty of the rivers.
Firstly, I didn’t realise that there were so many waterways in that part of Qld – the Balonne, Macintyre, Moonie and the Condomine – and that they all have a tendency to flood. My road trip provided a better understanding of why so many of our early poets and writers romanticised the river systems, the life blood providers, with the magnificent gum trees along the waters edge.
“Where the lone creek, chafing nightly in the cold and sad moonshine,
Beats beneath the twisted fern-roots and the drenched and dripping vine;
Where the gum trees, ringed and ragged, from the mazy margins rise,
Staring out against the heavens with their languid gaping eyes…….”
– Henry Kendell : The Wail In The Native Oak
Never was the river more appreciated than at Nindigully, with the Grey Nomads out in force at Queensland’s oldest (1864) licensed pub.
If it looks familiar that’s because the Nindigully Hotel was used for filming Hugh Jackman’s first film in the ‘90’s – Paperback Heroes – where he plays a truckie with a penchant for writing bodice rippers.
( NOTE : No apologies for still preferring Todd McKenney as The Boy From Oz).
I have always loved the monuments in our country towns honouring the lives of those lost during times of conflict. They provide so much history about how much families and local industry lost during wartime.
Don’t even get me started on the history that can be found in cemeteries – but can I recommend Dunwich Boneyard on North Stradbroke Island for sinking ships, Spanish Flue, Leprosy, and Insanity?