Fun, fun, fun on Australia Day
Wow. Wow and Wow!
One Wow for Bungendore. One for Captains Flat and one for Braidwood. These were the fantastic towns that I visited as Australia Day Ambassador for the Palerang Council. We had a terrific time with the folks. It was a BBQ breakfast in Bungendore; a scrumptious morning tea created by the CWA ladies at Captains Flat; and then that great quintessential Australia Day activity – the BBQ lunch in Braidwood. And what a mix of venues – the Palerang Council Chambers in Bungendore, the wonderful heritage listed community hall in Captains Flat complete with an old-fashion peep hole projection room from which the national anthem was projected, and the local RSL / Serviceman’s Club in Braidwood. A sausage BBQ, egg and bacon BBQ, a classic country CWA morning tea with lamingtons, vegemite on Jatz, meat pies, sausage rolls, tomato sauce, coffee and tea – we feasted on it all this Australia Day!
The gathering was similar in each town:- introductions, my 2014 Ambassadors pin (1 pin per ambassador so I received the same pin at each venue), my keynote talk for 15 minutes, presenting of the certificates for Community Event of the year and also for Citizen of the year, as well as Young Citizen of the year in Braidwood to a year 12 student (I hope she has enough time to study this year; it made me tired just listening to al that she was able to undertake last year) and also Citizenship Certificates to two folks who have decided to call Australia and Braidwood home; thanks all round; singing two verses of the national anthem; and then food!
We drove down Saturday from Sydney and stayed overnight in Bungendore. It was then up early for a 7.30 gathering at the council chambers for the breakfast – BBQ of course. They run a smooth and tight ship here at Palerang Council and the run sheet flowed smoothly, just about to the minute (thank goodness Bini was my time keeper) and after a quick gobble of my bacon and egg breakfast (I never eat right before I speak because I know what could happen to those sitting in front of me), it was into the car and we were on the road to Captains Flat. More right-to-the-minute organisation and Captains Flat was finished and we were on the road again to the final stop Braidwood. It is a nice smooth 45 km drive from Captains Flat to Braidwood – mostly – except 15 kms which is all gravel and that means rocks and dust and dirt but having driven on more than a few dirt roads in my teaching days (and a little to my aunt’s) it wasn’t too stressful. Luckily we were following a council car at a safe distance because up close we couldn’t see a thing – except floating dust – and the edge of the road to a sharp drop was rather close in a few spots!! Our little car is now very, very, very dusty!
What a thrill to be able to share my memories (including Australia Day in the USA with JPR) and reflections on Australia Day, and being a writer i linked it to words with the unifying word being People!! Congrats to all the recipients. It was great to meet and chat with the locals in every town. Thanks to Debby Ferguson who did a splendid job making sure that everything ran like a well oiled machine. And to the mayor, councillors and staff, Peter Harrison, Belinda Hogarth-Boyd, Paul Cockram and Peter Bascomb – wonderful meeting you all and thank you for making us feel so much a part of your lovely community. And also to Bill Waterhouse who sings a great National Anthem and Aussie themed songs!
Loved Australia Day with Palerang Council.