Australia - The Land Down Under

Well, that's a lot of bull......



Peterborough and Bob the Railway Dog
In a small park, in the centre of Peterborough in South Australia, is a statue of Bob the Railway Dog – a classic image of a shaggy mutt.
He is a legend in the area. Terowie, which is just down the road, actually has a Bob the Railway Dog Trail in which an imaginary Bob chats (albeit in bubbles attached to a loveable image of the pooch) to the traveller about the town.
The inscription on the sculpture in Peterborough explains: "The story of Bob, railway mascot, begins when he was rounded up in Adelaide in 1883 with a lot of other stray dogs being sent north to the rabbit plague.
“He was adopted by railway guard William Ferry of Terowie and a few months later moved with him to Petersburg. Bob began travelling on trains, first with his owner and then on his own. He jumped on and off trains as the mood took him making interstate journeys and short suburban trips on trams as well as trains (he also made river trips on the Murray Steamers). When he heard the whistle of a train he was off!
“He travelled far - to Sydney, Melbourne, Oodnadatta, Broken Hill, Mt Gambier and more.
"When he died in 1895 he was mourned by the travelling public all over Australia."
Then I checked the ‘net and found, to my amusement, an entire website devoted to the dog.
It contains vast amounts of information but my favourite was a letter to The Spectator in London which described Bob’s uniqueness: "I often see interesting letters to the Spectator about dogs, and I thought perhaps your readers might like to hear about the best known dog in Australia. His name is Railway Bob and he passes his whole existence on the train - his favourite seat being on top of the coal box. In this way he has travelled many thousands of miles, going all over the lines in South Australia. He is well known in Victoria, frequently seen in Sydney and has been up as far as Brisbane!
“The most curious part of his conduct is that he has no master, but every engine driver is his friend. At night he follows home his engine man of the day never leaving him or letting him out of his sight until they are back on the Railway Station in the morning, when he starts off on another of his ceaseless journeys. I have not seen him on our line for some time, but noticed with regret last time he was in the station he was showing signs of age, and limping as he walked. E Cresswall. Adelaide, August 24th. 1895."
Bob got lucky because, of all places in Australia, Peterborough was the craziest when it came to railway towns ... its great claim to fame ... well let me explain.
Before Federation in 1901 each state drew up its own rules. Some of those rules were sensible ... then there was the issue of railway gauges!
Each state decided that it was going to have a different railway gauge. Broad - 5'3", Standard 4'8 1/2" and Narrow 3'6'' (they are all in old imperial feet and inches) and, as luck would have it, Peterborough happened to be one of those places where all three railways came together.
They even needed a triple gauge turntable – the only one in the world. Yes, because the rest of the world isn’t totally stupid. And, hey, Bob was at a point where three railways met. He really could go anywhere ... and he did. Love that story.
May be an image of monument
just in case.....


Be early Spring, means snakes ARE around......they are also breeding, which means they are 'stroppy'...easily aggravated.

If a snake is in your house....leave the room quietly (and quickly)....and seal the bottom of the door with a towel.

If the snake is outside, keep a safe distance, stay quiet, keep an eye on the snake, so you know where it is. Use your mobile phone to call for help

Call a snake handler.....a person who has EXPERIENCE.

tripe zero can usually help (000)
"I always say to people that if you've got a python in your backyard, the best thing to do is race inside and quickly have a beer."

I flippin' love you Aussies.

Also, and you'd think I'd know this as I know a ton of automobile safety stats, but y'all have a pretty low automobile-related fatality rate. I'd have to check the per capita, but without doing the math that'd probably put you somewhere close to the top 25.

I don't mind snakes. They don't really bother me.

Spiders get to me. If I saw some of your spiders in my house, I'd burn it to the ground and not even lie to my insurance company.
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My bedtime approaches but I'm watching the utes set a time (qualifying) on the mountain.

We've got some racing on Bathurst this weekend!

(I can't think of too many things more Australian than this.)
Car racing on mt panorama & the footy....about as Aussie as you get
the footy.

Go Blues!

(I don't get enough access to really follow Australian Rules Football, but I was assigned a team to root for.)

As it is, my stream for this weekend's automobile racing will not be one that I share on But, Mt. Panorama is one of the greatest tracks on the planet. I used to watch the highlights (all those years ago) and root for one Mr. Brock, aka King of the Mountain.

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And just for David.....

It was a very action-filled race. I'd love to take a TCR class car on The Mountain. It's a little bit tempting to just go watch a race there. My favorite race there is the Bathurst 12 Hour. There's something special about that track when the sun starts to climb over the horizon.

I've gone to many tracks, some to drive on and some to watch. I'm not a huge fan of all types of racing - like I'm not a NASCAR fan, but I appreciate the spectacle. One of my favorite ways to experience a track is with the schools attached to many popular tracks. That way, it's not my car!

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