Friday Five Newsletter 2018.11.30

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Westprint Friday Five  Friday November 30th 2018

Be a traveller not a tourist. Try new things, meet new people.”

Click here to view Westprint Newsletter Archives from 24th April 2015 to 24th December 2015

Click here to view Westprint Newsletter Archives from 1st January 2016 to 23rd December 2016

Click here to view Westprint Newsletter Archives from 1st January 2017 to 29th December 2017

Click here to view Newsletter Archives from 5th January 2018 to current


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Otherwise there is a flat rate postage rate of $9.50 on all books, DVDs and talking books, regardless of the number of items ordered.

To order any of the books listed blow, click on the title to open a web browser, then use the Add to Cart button and proceed to the checkout. (or continue shopping for any additional titles you want.)

Visitors are welcome to call in at 6 Park St, Nhill, Monday to Friday. Please phone/email beforehand as we are not always open. Phone. 0353911466.

Friday Five Books

  1. In Leichhardt's Footsteps. $32.45. Bruce Simpson. The disappearance in 1848 of Leichhardt and his party is one of the most enduring mysteries in Australia's history. Nearly 100 years later four stockmen found some strange colonial artefacts on a remote Queensland property, it seemed some of the questions may have been answered. The author was one of the men who made the discovery. Simpson now tells how he and his mates went on a journey of investigation of what they believed to be Leichhardt's passing, offering his own explanation for what happened to the ill-fated expedition. First published in 1997, this edition 2007
  2. Marking the Land. $29.95. There is much wisdom and many a laugh to be found in this delightful collection of Australian sayings. The play of humour, practical good sense and irony locates them unmistakably in this country, and in the particular habits of people in the bush. 98pp. First published in 2005
  3. In the Middle of Nowhere. $25.00. In the Middle of Nowhere is the compelling true account of 18-year-old nurse Terry Augustus and John Underwood, a young born and bred cattleman she found flat on his back in ward 3 of St Vincent’s' Hospital, nursing a serious spinal injury sustained while mustering cattle. John itching to get home to his family’s cattle station in the Northern Territory, promised Terry He’d write. After five long years of corresponding, John and Terry married and moved to their new home – a tent and a newly drilled bore in the middle of nowhere. Their love for each other was only matched by their love for this ‘last frontier’ in the heart of the Territory. Modern day pioneers they built their cattle station from scratch, and educated a new generation of Underwood’s' there, on the headwaters of the Victorian River, 600 kilometres south-west of Katherine. Times where tough but with the power of love and the strength of the family helped them overcome any obstacle. First published in 1998, this edition 1999.
  4. Van Diemen's Land. James Boyce. $29.95. Almost half of the convicts who came to Australia came to Van Diemen's Land. There they found a land of bounty and a penal society, a kangaroo economy and a new way of life. In this book, James Boyce shows how the convicts were changed by the natural world they encountered. Escaping authority, they soon settled away from the towns, dressing in kangaroo skin and living off the land. Behind the official attempt to create a Little England was another story of adaptation, in which the poor, the exiled and the criminal made a new home in a strange land. This is their story, the story of Van Diemen's Land. 388pp. First published in 2008.
  5. Shooting Balibo: Blood and Memory in East Timor. Tony Maniaty. $33.00. In 1975, journalist Tony Maniaty flew to the Portuguese colony of East Timor looking for a war to film. He found it at a dusty outpost called Balibo. Maniaty and his ABC News crew were shelled and five other television newsmen who followed were murdered by Indonesian troops. Maniaty reported the Balibo Five story, faced death threats and fled before the Indonesian forces invaded. The only foreign journalist left in the country was executed in cold blood. The generation-long nightmare of the East Timorese had begun. In Shooting Balibo he teams up with the cast and crew of the feature film Balibo, retraces his days of danger, and dines with Jose Ramos-Horta as the independence fighter-turned-President recovers from an assassination attempt. But Maniaty's real purpose is to visit Balibo for the first time since 1975. When he steps into the burned-out house where his colleagues were slaughtered thirty-three years ago, past and present collide before his eyes. 311pp. First published in 2009

Notes from the Office

We’re back from England. Was it worth travelling 24 hours in a plane to give your kid a hug? Most definitely yes. We managed to also fit in a bit of tripping around and I hope to edit my notes and get the story to you next week.

What are your Christmas plans?

We’re a bit multicultural this Christmas. Our eldest is studying in Japan and will be there over for Christmas, her partner (an Aussie who grew up in Brunei) will be here in Nhill, our son and his Mexican partner will be road-tripping to Brisbane with us and our youngest will still be working in London.

Friday Forum

Correction – Ralph Milner Story November 9, 2108.

Dear Jo. The first person to drive stock across Australia was John McKinlay. He was sent north out of Adelaide in 1861 to search for Burke and Wills and took with him about 100 head of sheep and about 35 head of cattle. He arrived in Burketown early 1862 with both sheep and cattle minus what were consumed along the way. McKinlay's diary and the Davis (one of his men) diary has the facts if needed. Ian.

John McKinlay

I haven’t had a chance to look through McKinlay’s or Davis’s diaries yet, but I did find the following information in the Australian Dictionary of Biography. 1974. Jo.

John McKinlay (1819-1872), explorer, was born in 1819 at Sandbank, Scotland. He migrated to New South Wales with his brother Alexander in 1836. They worked with their uncle who held land near Goulburn until he became bankrupt in 1840. Strong, energetic and 6 ft 4 ins (193 cm) tall, John turned to outback districts and learned much bushcraft from the Aboriginals. He also made money by taking up squatting leases on the River Darling and selling them. By 1851 he held occupation licences in South Australia, some in partnership with James Pile of Gawler and others near Port Augusta. By then McKinlay was thoroughly self-reliant, an accurate shot and equal to almost any situation except public speaking.

In August 1861 McKinlay was chosen by the House of Assembly to lead the South Australian Burke Relief Expedition. Eight of the party assembled at Kapunda with 26 horses, 4 camels and a loaded cart. Further north he bought 12 cattle and recruited a bullock driver. At Blanchewater station he collected six months' stores sent up from Port Augusta and a hundred sheep. The party established a depot at Lake Buchanan in mid-October. McKinlay made many excursions and found what he thought was the grave of Charles Gray. On the assumption that all Burke's party had perished, W. O Hodgkinson was sent to Blanchewater to report and bring up fresh supplies; after a month he returned with a cook and newspapers announcing the rescue of John King by A. W. Howitt and the deaths of Burke and Wills. On 7 December at Cooper's Creek McKinlay found the tree marked by Howitt near Burke's grave and buried a document showing his intention to proceed back to his depot, then northward.

McKinlay had been instructed to explore north and west of Lake Eyre. After finding many lakes and much pastoral land he made for the Gulf of Carpentaria in hope of meeting H.M.V.S. Victoria. Heavy rain in February 1862 transformed Sturt's Stony Desert into 'running streams and blossoming meadows'. The stores had been depleted and the cart abandoned but for some time the party lived well on plentiful fish and meat. However, the leader never relaxed his strict discipline and good relations with the Aboriginals. He shaped the course accurately and on 20 May arrived near the mouth of the Albert River, but mangrove swamps prevented sight of the Gulf of Carpentaria.

Unhappily the Victoria had sailed for Melbourne and the party was bitterly disappointed. With his usual determination McKinlay decided to make for Port Denison (Bowen) six hundred miles (966 km) away on the east coast of Queensland. His watch had become useless for calculating the distance travelled, his bullocks were reduced to two, his remaining horses were in bad shape, his camels were lame and had to be fitted with leather boots, and his last four pounds of flour were reserved for making gruel in case of sickness. By 20 June his men were rationed to twenty ounces of salt meat a day and by 31 July all the livestock except ten horses had been eaten. On 2 August McKinlay saw fresh cattle tracks and soon the herd with two men came in sight. Within an hour the party was 'pitching in to roast beef and damper', but for weeks the men suffered great pains after meals.

McKinlay led his men slowly over the last eighty miles (129 km) to Bowen, where he was given a complimentary dinner and a handsome testimonial on the eve of sailing for Rockhampton on 17 August. A month later he reached Melbourne. The Royal Society of Victoria welcomed him, and with Landsborough he was given an enthusiastic reception in the Exhibition Building. In October McKinlay arrived in Adelaide, handed his journal and charts to the government and was awarded £1000; the five men who returned with him were given six months' pay. He was banquetted by the mayor and given a silver tea and coffee service. At Gawler he was welcomed as 'a conquering hero' but demurred from making speeches. Although he had summed up the actions of each day before he slept, he had no talent for talking or writing about his own exploits. Described as 'the knight-errant of explorers', he went his own way and ignored critics. His party was the second to cross the continent from south to north and, like J. M. Stuart, he never lost any of his men.

In 1865 McKinlay was chosen to lead an expedition to determine a better site for settlement than Adam Bay in the Northern Territory. He sailed from Port Adelaide in September and arrived at the bay in November. He denounced it as worthless for a port and city, and went in search of better country. He found patches of good country south-east of the Adelaide River. He then turned north to the East Alligator River but was hemmed in by floods. In June 1866 he killed his horses, dried the meat, bound the skins to saplings and made a raft on which he took his party safely to Adam Bay. In August he joined the Beatrice and by way of Timor returned to South Australia, reporting favourably on Port Darwin and Anson Bay. He revisited the Northern Territory in 1870 to select sites for holders of land orders and then offered to survey the route for the overland telegraph from Darwin but his terms were rejected by the government.

Between his explorations McKinlay continued to take up new runs. In January 1863 he married Jane Pile. Worn out by hardships he died on 31 December 1872 and was buried at Willaston cemetery. An impressive monument was erected in his honour at Gawler, its foundation laid by John Forrest on 14 November 1874. The Shire of McKinlay in north-west Queensland, was named after him in 1903.


We are sometimes queried about our postage charges, not often (bless you all) but sometimes people will cancel an online order saying that they want to buy items post-free. We charge $9.50, more for express post and we pay the postage on a number of our smaller books and all maps. Our mail contract was ‘renewed’ earlier this year (without consultation) to be a new stream-lined, more convenient and better tracked system. With the new system we now have to spend time calculating the postage rate and print out an ‘approved’ label for each individual package. Since the introduction of this new system at the start of 2018 our postage costs have risen by 75%.  I share the frustration of those who question why we charge postage when I know I can buy online and pay $3 postage to have an item posted from China, or $6.50 from England. We are looking into more cost-effective options but most of these options would involve us moving all of our stock to a bulk distribution centre in a major city. This is not an option we are considering at the moment. We like being in control of our own business and we feel that the personal interaction with you all is more important than the money we would save. If we find a more economical solution, we will be sure to let you all know. Jo.

Bush Cooking

Carl’s Tomato Noodles


2-minute noodles

1 can chopped tomatoes


Boil enough water to just cover noodles, put in noodles, and flavour if you wish, when noodles are soft add tomatoes cook until warm to your liking. The longer you leave it the thicker the gravy. Cheap costs $1.50 at most and takes 3 to 4 minutes from water boiling.

Theresa’s Duck with Port & Milk sauce.


Ducks             Port                 Milk

Onions           Old bread       Herbs, S & P

Butter             Oil                   Plain flour

Bit of string, skewer & Camp oven.

Sounds complicated, but it's not. Make stuffing either fresh or make it before you leave home and freeze, or better still freeze the stuffed ducks and all the work is done before you leave home.


Tear up about 6 slices old bread, add one very finely chopped onion a good dash of dried mixed herbs and big dollop of butter, salt and pepper to taste and lightly combine with some hot water. Water can be cold if using Margarine. Stuff ducks (moderately filled not jam packed) seal duck end with a piece of plain bread, bung in a skewer to hold ends together and tie off with string to stop stuffing escaping.


Heat camp oven, add some oil and cook off some onions in the oil, put duck in and turn to seal all over. Set camp oven where ducks can cook slowly for an hour or two.  Once cooked, remove duck and drain off as much fat as you can from the pot, place pot back on heat - pour in a measured good slurp of favourite Port and reduce over heat. Add a couple of tablespoons off plain flour to bottom of pan AWAY from juices; allow to cook off a bit whilst stirring. Gradually incorporate enough milk with port juices (usually about a cup) to make a thin sauce. Stir as you allow it to thicken slightly, if too thick just add more milk don’t be tempted to test the theory that more port is better, it's not :)

Measurements are not exact as it depends how many you’re feeding.  I usually do this amount for 3 or 4 ducks.

Special corner of Queensland gets a name

I just heard about this. Don’t know whether you all have - The Gregory and Greeves Corner. Ron

No, we hadn’t heard – and this happened in 2008. As is the usual way of these things, a day after writing up the new Queensland corner information, we received a story on the nine corners. Read on. Jo.

Queensland has a new official “corner”. Queensland already had Cameron Corner, Poeppel Corner and Haddon Corner where the State’s borders meet NSW, South Australia and the Northern Territory.

To be known as the Gregory and Greaves Corner, this corner is located near the township of Mungindi, where the Queensland-NSW border intersects the Barwon River at latitude 29 degrees south.

On the map, it is the point where the Queensland-NSW border changes from a straight line to a squiggle.

The name Gregory and Greaves Corner honours Sir Augustus Charles Gregory and William Albert Greaves, who surveyed and marked parts of the Queensland-New South Wales border in 1865. Sir Augustus Gregory was Queensland’s first surveyor-general, as well as an explorer. Greaves was the NSW district surveyor for Armidale. The first survey of the state border at latitude 29 degrees south was fixed in October 1865 by Sir Gregory, Mr Greaves and their teams of assistants. After they measured the latitude along the border, workers marked the line with iron pins, which were 60cm long and driven up to 20cm into the ground at several points along the boundary.

Mungindi also has another surveying landmark – the One Ton Post, a huge wooden surveying post also on the Queensland/NSW border.

Nine Corners

There are six recognised named corners in Australia. Gregory/Greaves Corner, Cameron Corner, Haddon Corner, Poeppel Corner, MacCabe Corner and Surveyor Generals Corner. There are actually 9 corners but only 6 named.

I have been to all these corners and must add that not many people even know all the corners let alone been to them. We have just taken a group of people to MacCabe Corner, there are three corners in the area. This completes their journey of visiting the 9 corners. The journey to the corners started on our Birdsville, Innamincka, Corner Country tag-along tour where they went to Haddon Corner and Cameron Corner.

They then followed Deb and I on a 12-day tour across the Simpson Desert that took in a visit to Poeppel Corner. We then suggested they partake in our 31 day across Central Australia, Pilbara, Broome area, Gibb River-Kimberly region and NT. On this trip we visited Surveyor Generals Corner. The group had previously been to Gregory-Greaves so that just left MacCabe and two unnamed corners on the Murray River. So, we hired a house boat as these corners are only accessible via the river. We went to the last three by boat.

It’s been an amazing journey to get these people to the nine corners.

At our Charleville Bush Caravan Park, I do a series of talks around the campfire and one of the talks explains where all these corners are and how to get to them. If anyone would like more information, please find me at the above park. Graham.

From the Birdsville Cop.

The following information we really for the locals around Birdsville but it translates well for anyone travelling on quiet bush roads this summer. Jo.

The year is coming to an end and the temperature is rising, there are less and less people travelling on our local roads.

This is a reminder to all to ensure that you and your vehicles are properly equipped and prepared for remote travel no matter how short or far the trip is. If no one knows where you are or cannot contact you to find out, then they cannot help you. No one needs to be reminded how remote we are, and it can be days before help gets to you. Where possible carry emergency communication devices EPIRBS, Satellite Phones, Spot Trackers etc.

If you should happen to become stranded do not leave your vehicle. It’s easier to spot a car than someone walking around out there.

Most importantly let Family, Friends or work Colleagues know your planned trips again no matter how short or far the trip is, so they can make sure you arrive safely. If not, they can then contact authorities for you should the need arise. We all travel on remote roads and we all think it won’t happen to us. Just take the time to prepare for each trip and let someone know where you’re going and when you get there. It’s just looking out for each other. Stephan Pursell OIC, Birdsville.

Friday Funnies

A man is driving along a highway and sees a rabbit jump out across the middle of the road. He swerves to avoid hitting it, but unfortunately the rabbit jumps right in front of the car. The driver, a sensitive man as well as an animal lover, pulls over and gets out to see what has become of the rabbit. Much to his dismay, the rabbit is dead. The driver feels so awful that he begins to cry. 
A beautiful woman (insert hair colour of choice) driving down the highway sees a man crying on the side of the road and pulls over. She steps out of the car and asks the man what's wrong. 
"I feel terrible," he explains, "I accidentally hit this rabbit and killed it." 
She says, "Don't worry." She runs to her car and pulls out a spray can. She walks over to the limp, dead rabbit, bends down, and sprays the contents onto the rabbit. 
The rabbit jumps up, waves its paw at the two of them and hops off down the road. 
Ten feet away the rabbit stops, turns around and waves again, he hops down the road another 10 feet, turns and waves, hops another ten feet, turns and waves, and repeats this again and again and again, until he hops out of sight. 
The man is astonished. He runs over to the woman and demands, "What is in that can? 
The woman turns the can around so that the man can read the label. It says... 
"Hair Spray - Restores life to dead hair and adds permanent wave." 

A Yankee lawyer went duck hunting in eastern North Carolina. He shot and dropped a bird, but it fell into a farmer's field on the other side of a fence. As the lawyer climbed over the fence, an elderly gentleman asked him what he was doing. The lawyer responded, "I shot a duck and it fell in this field, I'm going into retrieve it."
The old farmer replied. "This is my property, and you are not coming over here." 
The indignant lawyer said, "I am one of the best trial attorneys in the U.S. and, if you don't let me get that duck, I'll sue you and take everything!
The old farmer smiled and said, "Apparently, you don't know how we do things here in North Carolina. We settle small disagreements like this with the NC Three-Kick Rule." 
The lawyer asked, "What is the NC three-Kick Rule?"
The Farmer replied. "Well, first I kick you three times and then you kick me three times, and so on, back and forth, until someone gives up."
The Yankee attorney quickly thought about the proposed contest and decided that he could easily take the old southerner. He agreed to abide by the local custom.
The old farmer slowly climbed down from the tractor and walked up to the city feller. His first kick planted the toe of his heavy work boot into the Yankee lawyer's groin and dropped him to his knees. His second kick nearly wiped the man's nose off his face. The barrister was flat on his belly when the farmer's third kick to a kidney nearly caused him to give up. The Yankee lawyer summoned every bit of his will and managed to get to his feet and said, "Okay, you old redneck southerner, now it's my turn."
The old North Carolina farmer smiled and said, "Naw, I give up. You can have the duck."  

Old Harold's In the Hospital
Harold was an old man. He was sick and in the hospital. There was one young nurse that just drove him crazy.   Every time she came in, she would talk to him like he was a little child. She would say in a patronizing tone of voice, "And how are we doing this morning, or are we ready for a bath, or are we hungry?"
Old Harold had had enough of this particular nurse. One day, Old Harold had breakfast, pulled the juice off the tray, and put it on his bedside stand. He had been given a urine bottle to fill for testing. The juice was apple juice. So, you know where the juice went!  The nurse came in a little later, picked up the urine bottle and looked at it.  "My, but it seems we are a little cloudy today."
At this, Old Harold snatched the bottle out of her hand, popped off the top, and drank it down, saying, "Well, I'll run it through again.  Maybe I can filter it better this time."
The nurse fainted!  Old Harold just smiled!

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