Friday, November 18, 2016

Pacific & Australia - part fourteen

Having circled the continent, we’re back in Sydney.

Okay, okay, I know I should have gone to Uluru - Ayer’s Rock - taken the Indian Pacific to Perth, climbed Sydney’s Harbour Bridge and petted that koala. Time was when I might have. But hours to climb a rock - mind you, a big rock - and days to sit on a train and look at desert no longer appeal. As for the bridge, why pay $288 (AUS) for a case of severe vertigo? And koalas pee on you. 

No, I took the easy - but not altogether uninteresting - way. The trip was a success, Kathy and Michael were much appreciated companions, and today I’ll be lunching with another friend. Simon’s an inveterate world traveller, so I’m fortunate he’s home in Australia. 

I was going to finish with Maasdam’s stern, Dutch flag and unclimbed bridge.

But, then I remembered some tattered posters on a Fremantle side street. These Afghans, brought to Australia as cameleers, were as much part of the country as British convicts. Or Chinese miners who came here in the Gold Rush. Or South Asians. Or Aboriginals. And so were - and are - their descendants.

The links explain:

Who is an Australian? For that matter, who or what is a Canadian? In a time such as this, welcome, acceptance and inclusion seem like a worthwhile note on which to end.