He was riding one of those older persons electric mobility cars, it had a sun shade and with his flat cap, big red nose, along with a face that looked like a relief map of the Andes, he had the appearance of a clown in a clown car.
“Just call me Yogi” he said, “We can do this two ways, the Shire says it’s $20 or we can do it off the books for $10.”
I paid Yogi for my night’s stay at the Banana Shire’s Taroom Tourist Park: “I wasn’t always like this you know, I was a Rodeo rider, done every bush job there is. Where you from anyway?”
“Hottest days work I ever did was in Melbourne. People don’t believe me, we did a Rodeo show at the Showgrounds back in the 60’s, 44 degrees it was!”
Tea and raisin toast this morning, then the road rose to meet me as I climbed the range country through Isla Gorge National Park. Atop the crest and through the cuttings, millions of years of geological history was layered for all to see, like a layer cake or neapolitan log or chocolate gateau. Over the crest where new rock falls had exposed the soil to the elements for the first time in eons, grass seed was sprouting. Life takes a toe hold anywhere it can.
Down on the flats, kangaroos, wallabies, possums, fought their own daily battle of the Somme, on the losing side, there is no truce, ceasefire or amnesty and certainly no surrender. Coming to the top of the last climb, I saw a road train of road trains with drivers strategising the decent.
Arriving in Theodore, which is named after Red Ted Theodore; “The workers friend.” Queensland Premier, renowned Labour stalwart of the 1920’s who’s carrier was brought undone when a Royal Commission found he was corrupt, something’s don’t change.
Free camping tonight on the banks of the Dawson River, looking forward to riding to the town of Banana tomorrow.