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Published: August 26th 2007
The kimberley..North Western Australia, going to work in a very remote rugged area full of cows and bulls cowboys and cowgirls! The nearest town an hour away....not completely sure how we were gonna cope!
It is Bunuba land in the southern part of the Kimberley region where we are which stretches from the town Fitzroy Crossing to the King Leopold Ranges. Bunuba lands include the Napier and Oscar Ranges.
Ned McCord , the manager of the cattlestation,picked us up in Broome airport and filled us in on the 4 hour drive to King Leopold Downs. Its an aboriginal owned station of a million acas on aboriginal land where the Bunaba communities and other tibes live. He gave us a brief insight on life on and around the cattlestation and the rest was left for us to experience ourselves..........
We arrived at the station in the dark so had no idea about the landscape around the station but were greeted by the lads who worked there with a MEAT MEAT MEAT bbq, we got stuck into the Leopold Steak quickly realizing we were going to be living on BEEF for the next couple of months!
Ned, the boss very fun, friendly and laid back but very Knowledgeable with a get the job done attitude, he manages the station but has his own company and is director of many cattle realated boards all over Australia,
Stoney the assistant manager , he was away when we arrived but came back with 20 chickens which he'd rescued from a closed battery farm. A very friendly guy who likes to talk...we had been warned! He soon beacame a close friend teaching kate and I many things about cattle, horses and the surrounding land. Also our tour guide for our sundays off taking us to little creeks and touristy sites!
Brendan the mechanic... very caring and patient man who spent time explaining things to us in a calm manor, even when i nearly blew up the lawnmower he kept his cool and insisted it could of happened to anyone, im sure he wanted to scream inside though!
and Snowy and Mozzie both aborigianls from nearby communites, loads of fun taking advantage of mine and kates gulibleness... i do know that camels dont have three humps but they were quite convincing! They taught us things about their communties
and aboriginal culture.
Also Lisa from Queensland arrived and Angelica from Germany so with four girls now we're not that outnumbered anymore!
Day one in isolation..........up at 6am we were introduced to the nine potties... calves who had lost their mothers of were left behind during mustering. These were the lucky ones, many died as were too weak after losing their mothers before having their first drink. It was to our job to feed them milk twice a day soon becoming very attached! We also fed the roosters and met Brian the pet bull who is quite a character! We soon got the hang of things and were left to manage our days ensuring jobs were done and dinner was on the table at half past 6.
Tunnel Creek , a popular tourist site on which ive been to twice now learning about the aboriginal people. Its a 750m long passage created by the creek cutting through a spur of the Napier range which was used as a hideout for members of the Bunuba tribe. Jandamarra, known as the ned kelly of aborigines, was a tracker working for the police to capture aborigines who were spearing
Brian the pet bull
i was trying to get him to roll over, he does sometimes seem to think he's a dog...
sheep in 1984 but his tribal loyalty got the better of him and he ended up turning against the police and freeing all the prisoners.Jandamarra led a guerrilla war against police and European settlers in defence of his lands and his people. He was soon shot and killed in Tunnel Creek and many believe his spirit is still there.
When we went we were told to hold a rock underneath our armpits for a few seconds and then throw it into the water so the serpent has our scent which will protect us. we were also told not to take any pictures od aboriginal paintings without asking first. Its a very spiritual place and the bunuba people have many beliefs which you have to respect on their land.
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