On our visit to Parkes, New South Wales several years ago we did some touring around the town and the nearby district. One of the places my wife wanted to visit was the Lavender Farm on the eastern edge of town.While we were there we visited the shop where they sold a wide variety of products originating from the lavender bush. The owner gave us a personal guide of the small factory area where the lavender is processed.
During our stay at the Lavender Farm I was free to wander through the garden looking at the flowers as well as all of the birds to be seen there.
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On our trip to Parkes in the mid-west of New South Wales we travelled the short distance north of the city to the radio telescope. This telescope has been there for many years and I had long wanted to visit it, but this was the first time for me. My wife argued that she thought that we had visited there early in our married life. It doesn’t matter who was right.
During our time there we looked through the displays in the information centre. We then decided to have an ice-cream. While we sat eating it we had the pleasure of watching the dish slowly changing position. It is an awesome sight to see such a large structure moving.
This telescope played a key role in transmitting signals to the rest of the work during the first landing on the moon. The story of what happened is the plot of the movie called “The Dish.”
Several years ago we had a short holiday in Victoria and New South Wales. Our main objective was to take my mother-in-law to her sister’s funeral in Parkes. On the first day of our trip we stopped for lunch in the small mallee town of Ouyen in north west Victoria. This town is a service centre for a wide area of wheat and sheep farming in this district. It was beginning to decline but has had a boost in recent years due to tourism.
We were fascinated by the mural painted on the side of one of the buildings in the town centre. This mural pictorially depicted the history, growth, development and industries of the town and the surrounding district. It also featured some of the wonderful flora and fauna found there.
The mural tells of the struggles of the early settlers in this harsh environment as they attempted to make a living from the land. Early forms of transport are shown along with farming equipment and buildings. One scene depicts a steam train unloading water into an open drain. This water would probably have come from the River Murray some distance away. There are no natural river courses near Ouyen and water would have been essential for the farms to develop, as well as for the farm animals. The evaporation from the drains was enormous – probably as much as 90% in summer, so desperately needed pipelines were later installed.
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Last week I drove to my old home town of Loxton in the Riverland district of South Australia. I grew up on a farm a few miles south east of the town and later moved into the town itself for a few years. I attended the local Loxton High School in the early 1960s. I visit the town from time to time to visit family. My parents used to live there (until they passed away) and now a brother of mine and two sisters-in-law still live there.
Last week I attended the funeral of the mother of a school friend of mine. After the funeral I visited one of my sisters-in-law for the afternoon. Before heading home I did a little birding down by the River Murray.
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Next time I visit I must take more photos around this beautiful river town.
On our way home from our recent holiday in Robe, South Australia we stopped at Salt Creek. We took a short diversion road from the main highway and drove into the Coorong National Park. We stopped at a small picnic ground there so we could sit down at a picnic table in the scrub. While we were there I took a short five minute stroll along the walking trail shown in the photo. This is one of many walking tracks in this national park. We have often talked of camping here for a few days and doing some of the walks.