Category Archives: They’re a Weird Mob

Headers and Horses

G’Day Mob,

Sometimes we do things differently here in Coolatai. Remember Al from A Dinner Invitation who pestered Brian until he arranged a consignment of fresh abalone to Rocky Springs? Well not long after that Al had another idea.

That idea led to a paddock of oats on Al and Lis’ property. Standing proudly, ready for the harvest, was a week-old John Deere S670 header with a 35 foot draper front. Standing next to the shiny header was a bloke called Peter, three Clydesdales and an 1860s stripper and winnower. Peter had bought the stripper and winnower for $350 thirty years ago. Needless to say the header cost considerably more than $350.

169 Horses and Headers

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A Day at the Races

G’Day Mob,

Bart died last week. He was an Australian icon.

Bart Cummings was perhaps the greatest trainer of thoroughbreds we have seen in this country and his record of 12 Melbourne Cup wins is unlikely to be surpassed.

I don’t know if Bart ever attended the Warialda Races though I’d bet he probably didn’t.

But Coolatai does. Every year. I even find a dress to wear

153 Testamentor

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Old Fogies

12th April 2012

G’Day Mob,

Our mate, Tom, said to me recently, “Do you remember when you went to 21st parties and all the old fogies sat along the wall at the back – ha ha?”

Fast forward a couple of nights and Tom, Jen, Col, Brian and I are at a 21st party – sitting up the back. Against the wall. The speeches came along and Tom boasted that he had heard every word that the birthday boy had said. That was until we told Tom that there had been two speeches and he had missed the second one entirely. Old fogies.

127 Home Brew


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A Coup at the Wallaroo

G’Day Mob,

Spring may mean hayfever and endless equinoxial winds but the upside is the Spring Racing Carnival. This post was written a couple of years ago when one of Australia’s best thoroughbreds graced our tracks and we experienced it all from one of Australia’s best country pubs. Continue reading

Outstation Hangi

G’Day Mob,

Here we go with the Hangi but firstly a few notes to get you orientated. My Kiwi (Brian) has been putting down hangis ever since I have known him; from the soft red sands of the Great Sandy Desert to the week-long digging through trap-rock on the hills of the Mole River and this is how it goes: once the hole is dug to Brian-approved depth, a large fire is lit, which super heats rocks strewn amongst its flames. As the fire dies down the rocks are placed in the bottom of the hole. Next comes the food in steel baskets placed on top of the rocks. The baskets are covered with wet sheets and hessian, and then the whole lot is covered with dirt and left to steam cook for several hours.

So let’s go, but it is a long story so it might be best to grab a cuppa before you start and then come back and settle in…… Continue reading

Warialda Show

12th May 2009

G’Day Mob,

The local agricultural show was an integral part of my childhood. I remember watching from the school bus as each afternoon in the week preceding the show the grounds swelled with amazing rides and colourful caravans. Mum encouraged my sister and I to always participate and from an early age I made faces out of vegetables and diligently painted plaster of paris figurines for exhibition in the pavilion. On show weekend we would run to see if we had won a prize, then it was off to sideshow alley to spend pocket money that had been saved for months, before, broke and worn-out, we went in search of Mum and Dad for a dagwood dog as the fireworks began.

In keeping with tradition I was keen to visit the 2009 Warialda Show. Continue reading

The Lizard Man of Coolatai

Coolatai (population nearly 30), and the 100-odd residents on surrounding properties that make up our community, is a potpourri of personalities and talents. We have all sorts of weird and wonderful characters and we even have a lizard freak.

Alexander Dudley is our resident herpetologist and poet. As well as being a wealth of knowledge on our reptilian friends and an astute observer of Coolatai life, he is also a pretty decent photographer.

Alex has kindly shared the following photos with us – all creatures with which I share Rocky Springs. Continue reading

Coolatai Bush Telegraph

17th August 2008

G’Day Mob,

Welcome back to the Rambles, which this week have been inspired and corrupted by the Coolatai Bush Telegraph.

The Coolatai Bush Telegraph is a monthly newsletter for the local community that was created by a blow-in four years ago. The blow-in has since blown-out leaving the publication to myself and two others. We are enjoying putting it together and haven’t been sacked as yet, although we did manage to upset a few of the more sensitive types in the district with the turkey joke in our first edition.

So this Ramble is set out like the Bush Telegraph: there is news, there are sports reports, there are classified advertisements and there are jokes. Everyone loves the jokes.

So boil the billy, print out the Ramble and enjoy a minute’s silence in the sun.

Bush Telegraph

Letter to Pa

Nag, nag, nag – here we go again. I want to run this blog one way; the fans push it in another direction. However this time they have a point. This ramble was written only a month ago which means you wouldn’t be seeing it for about another year if I was sticking to chronological order, but as you will see the sentiment is meant for now……….

Dear Pa,

It’s been ten years since you died and though I think of you often, I particularly missed you this weekend. This weekend was the annual Coolatai Vintage Tractor Pull and you would have had a ball. There have been two previous Pulls which were somewhat boring to a non-competitor but the Coolatai Mob gave this Pull a real shake and it was a ripper. Continue reading