Hi Erwin, ironic to see your article on the races …

Comment on When you have cattle in your blood by Ray.

Hi Erwin, ironic to see your article on the races up so soon after I had just returned.
I was going to say a few words on the event, but you covered it so well.
I’ll post some pics to the Facebook site to go with this. I would like to add to your story with some observations of my second weekend out there.
I mentioned to a mate that if anybody asks you what living in the NT really means to me, all I would have to say is go out to the next event and you will see.
I looked at the clouds of dust as the triple cattle trucks come rolling in, and realise how tough this country life is, and yet there are a group of people out there, just on the outskirts of town, who work for sunup till sundown, and are the continuing lineage to the people who opened up this country.
Watching the fence building comp, I was struck by the sight an Aboriginal ringer, in the the Akubra, RM Williams shirt, jeans, boots and spurs. A big strong lad, in his element, and you could imagine the pride his descendants (who also rode horses, worked cattle and lived in the country they were born to) would have in him.
And there were so many, just like that. The kids too, with all the western clothing, hanging out the back and cracking their whips with ease and style, and you can see the future of the skilled Aboriginal ringer and station worker is in good hands.
Up in the stands we were entertained by a group of hirsute lads singing what first sounded like Irish backpackers chanting at the soccer. Unfortunately just a group of likely lads from Melbourne, with one obviously brave enough to ride a bull, ending with a moon salute to the crowd near his mates.
I gave the dance a miss after my messy performance last year, but you’ve gotta take your hat off to Local DJ Darren Rumble, who is at all the the great events. He never fails to get the crowd on the dance floor.
One of the biggest impressions was remembering I was not on a movie set. One of the riders in the ring could have easily been a young Tom Cruise.
In fact most of these station workers, ringers, cowboys, station owners just looked … well how do you describe it? The way the looked, dressed, talked, walked. I seem to have forgotten how much respect I have for these salt of the earth people. Text book Dinki Di Aussies.
How proud must these parents be when their 13 or 14 year old gets on a brumby and has to crack a whip while holding on for an eternity of eight seconds?
In a world where we are faced with schools banning cartwheels in the playground, these young boys are climbing on over half a tone of pure muscle, and then the get on a big cheeky bull!
Boys become men out here, fast.
Finally the wives and girlfriends of these guys. You can have your Kardashians, supermodels or Bondi beach babes, these ladies were simply stunning in their raw and natural, beauty. Obviously not as stunning as my wife, it seems I was standing in an RB Sellars catalogue.
New jeans with press stud jewellery, pristine shirts, teeth so white they dazzled, and skin like China dolls.
I can’t remember so much beauty in close proximity in a long time. And they were so friendly.
All in all, what a great weekend. Thanks to the folly ambos, bush firies, the coffee man, the country coppers and the Harts Range Race committee, thanks for allowing my son to experience some of his own heriatige, and the people who make our country what it is.

Recent Comments by Ray

Business group may establish ‘federal’ prison in The Centre
Employment for up to 200 staff to run it, their families, infastructure, employment, local businesses to supply food, and equipment.
Located 20 to 30km out of town, like the current NT one is, what is there not to like.
If the Feds are paying, the technology will be pretty good. Go for it.

Gallery: national reference group appointed
Evelyn, sorry I have no idea what it may be, but this link might give an indication of what members of statutory bodies are paid.

Gallery: national reference group appointed
Agree Russell, much like the recent Royal Commission where a predetermined outcome was presided over by a person who knew the ending before it began, who was unable to find the evidence until it was presented to the public after the enquiry had concluded.
A well paid job if you can get it. It seems that we, the hoi polloi, pay quite well when we have no choice in the funding.

Gallery: national reference group appointed
Evelyn, you mention the remuneration of a member of the Legislative Assembly.
The appointed people are not MLAs, nor will they be paid that amount.
They would be appointed as a member of a statutory body and paid in line with that role under division 2 of the Act. Let’s not jump to conclusions here.
Although it will be a substantial payment, it is likely to be far less than what an MLA receives.

Ring a bell?
This whole farce reminded me of the little golden book I read as a child, called The Emperor’s New Clothes.
Once the tailor had the Kings ear, he convinced him that only the stupid people would not be able to see the magnificent new cloth.
He was convinced that he was right and lapped up the tailor’s words that it was a beautiful cloth, and the King convinced all his followers and they all agreed, despite knowing better, because he’s the King, and he can’t be wrong.
He never doubted the tailor, because he was told that it was the best, and he believed it, until a child with nothing to lose, pointed out the obvious.
What a shame nobody use that wonderful Territory turn of phrase, “yeah … nah”, which seems more grammatically correct than boundless possible.

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