7 May 2002
On our second day at Strathfield station, I went out with Heather to check a bore, whilst Susan dealt with some bureaucratic tasks on the internet. We then checked out the old farmhouse and worker’s quarters.
Heather then took us for a drive around the perimeter of the property. This took some time, and some tricky 4-wheel-driving on her part. She took us to some of her favourite spots. I imagined how the now dry creek beds would look when they were full of water, with shady Coolibah Trees overhead. As it was, all the creeks were dry, due to the drought that had stricken eastern Australia.
That night I cooked a mild curry, which seemed to be popular. Heather told us an amazing story about how she was injured on the station and had to be air-lifted to hospital with a suspected broken back. It was a reminder of the dangers of work and isolation in the Queensland outback.
The Chandlers at Glentulloch and the Moores at Strathfield had never met us before. They extended us invitations to visit and stay with them simply because we were friends of a trusted friend. They opened their houses and their hearts to us, and this is an enduring memory we have of outback Queensland. We are fortunate travelers indeed, to have encountered such generosity towards strangers.
The next morning we packed up, said our farewells, and drove west to Mount Isa.