Monday, 28 December 2015

Ramblin' Home To Helenback

Photos of homesteads and properties in far-flung corners of the south-east of Queensland.
Home is where one starts from. T. S. Eliot
At work, I have travelled a few times. I have travelled in order to come home. And so it was one time, my travelling companion asked me: “Are we goin’ in style flyin’, or walkin’?”
“Drivin’,” I said.
“Which way we headin’? Lincoln county road or Armageddon?

He was already clownin’. “We usin’ the ute, or bringin’ the limousine?”
“You been readin' my mail then.” I said. “We’re goin' to Brindavan.”
“Bring the van?" He was confused. "We don’t have a van.”
“Brin-da-van" I enunciated, then shook my head at him. "You revheaded clown. Brindavan, it's on Mt Mowbullan. Up in the Bunya Mountains.”
From a hilltop position on Mt Mowbullan high above the rainforest trees, one can see parts of the Darling Downs and South Burnett regions, from Toowoomba to Kingaroy. But these are just a small part of the great south-east. And in and around that quarter of Queensland, I’ve been everywhere man. And elsewhere.
And wherever I find myself, I long to be at home. Maya Angelou.
I’ve seen some ups n downs, but mostly downs, lucky downs too.

Ups N Downs is up near Roma town.

Whilst Orana Downs is down Middlemount way.

I did not quite strike it lucky down in Lucky Downs.

Every now and then I dreamt of escaping to paradise. Actually I’ve been there. I've seen Eden in New South Wales. And I mean the town called Eden, not Eden my friend. Yes I have been to paradise, and I’ve been to Helenback.

The ache for home lives in all of us. M Angelou.
I avoided the cosa nostra but sighted a place they may well call home - the Casa Nostra.
 Casa Nostra (our home)

Roxborough may be autonomous though I‘m not certain if it is walled.

El Dorado is certainly an imaginary place, but this Queensland address is for real. 
And from wild Roxborough to El Dorado, there’s always a place called Emoh Ruo.
Emoh Ruo

And vice versa in central Queensland from Seloh Nolem to Nalgar.
Seloh Nolem is south west of Mackay,
and Nalgar is in Raglan between Rockmapton and Gladstone.

From the sea to the mountains. The summit of Hillcrest, the audacity of Mt Hope, and the heights of Montana Park.
Mt Hope

Indeed in every land there is hope, like in Hopeland.

Ask me, I do give a damn. Next stop is via Nangram.

And from Windibri to the still Many Waters.
Many Waters
I’ve seen oceans and mighty rivers, lakes and waterfalls, and the odd creek like Alarm Creek. 
I was alert and Alarm Creek is indeed a strange creek. And Wallumbilla is on the Wallumbilla Creek. Yes I’ve seen Many Waters. Then there’s Marinda.
Marinda supposedly means "from the sea”. 
It must be the air out here, the weather or the climate - or a sea change.
 Wallumba in Condamine.
Condabilla Wallumbilla Wieambilla. 
These are all sister places to the town of Bauko-Bila in remote Mountain Province.
Combabula State Forest adjacent to YulebaWallumbilla, Wandoan covers an area of about 5,800 hectares.
This Ekala is not a suburb of Ja-Ela.

'Twas down by Killarney's green woods that we strayed,
with our skin burnt red plying our trade.
From the coalmines near Killarney to the Condabilla sun, plodding bared the secrets of my soles. Black toenails, chafed heels, bruised bunions - I was caught flatfooted and suffering from pronation. ‘I’m a republican, I’m over this,’ I declared at the end of that day, as I retired. Again.
Like my leg, that was lame, but in Condabilla they do farm fish such as Murray Cod and other native local species for the dinner table. And I was dining up in Ocean View, gazing at the distant shore, when I realised for sure, that I found agreement with George Bernard Shaw:
Home life is no more natural to us than a cage is natural to a cockatoo.
Or than a zoo is natural to a kangaroo. Indeed a songbird 'prefers the blue' to a golden cage.

Bryden is a small rural locality in the Somerset Region.
Somerset, Winston, Everton.

Limestone Essex
You can decorate your home with Silurian Athens marble from Queensland. 
Essex Limestone is used for interior applications.

From Kenya to Montana.

Lush Montana Park is a place landed in Maleny.

Seen Sherwood, some deadwood and Annie’s Stump.
Deadwood is in a not-quite-lawless mining town out west,
 and only attracts those looking to work the land.

A kind of deadwood is Annie’s Stump. It sits by the roadside, rotting away.

Legend has it that Brigadoon is seen for only one day every hundred years. 
I went past this mysterious place on that one day this century.

Ellerslea somewhere between Kogan and Condamine.

 Ewingsdale in North Jackson.

Cowabunga! Kabunga West in Wandoan.

Tartrus west of Marlborough.

I had rather be on my farm than be emperor of the world. George Washington 
Wycheproof homestead on the banks of the Calliope River.

Some are good, some are bad, and then there’s the goons. Even paradise has its share of ‘em.
Paradise Lagoon

Howdy Wolardi.

Some homes are welcoming, some not.

 Some attend church and stand to worship, some sit at the Devil’s Pulpit.


I tried moonlightin’ one sunlit day in Moonlight.
Then I tried rollin' rollin' rollin'.
Rollo Park

Chief said "Drover, let's roll on."
Shalimar is one of several royal gardens of the Empire in the sun .

White Park


Then there's the hills districts.
From Hollywood to Holly Hills, my mind was playing tricks.
 There's oil in dem dar hills, and dar demvales.

I ventured south to Texas, and in the far south to Bolivia too. But that's a different tale, a story for another day, or another year or two.
For I had come to the end of the road. And in my journey of a thousand miles to look for home, I had perhaps one mishap. I began with a misstep. Now I realise what I already know: that home is where you find your feet.
          I've been up and down and around and 'round and back again 
          I've been so many places I can't remember where or when… 
          And I turned inside out and 'round about and back again 
          Found myself right back where I started again.
There’s something about this day and age, where most everything has to be in black-and-white. There is no in-between, no room or shade of grey and beige. Few people listen to the old sage. So I carried on to my pine-clad mountain home, one pining step at a time. Not quite in step not quite in rhyme, but in my weary shoes contemplating Confucius: 
          The strength of a nation derives from the integrity of the home.
One step at a time
on a stepping stone
of a stonewall
to the great wall
of the land, from
whence come 
the wisdom of the age.
The integrity of a home is built on a rock
That’s the message from me to you
Recalled from a portal to the Great Wall in Mutianyu
Well my heart’s in the Highlands wherever I roam
That’s where I’ll be when I get called home…
I can only get there one step at a time
The strength of a nation derives from the integrity of the home.
And from integrity comes serenity.
One step at a time…

And in the simplicity of a humble abode - peace.