We took it slowly along the road to Birdsville, hoping to nurse the water tank to an early repair. It held up well with the make shift bung getting a good dust coating to ‘cement ‘it well in place with no leaking! A closer look at the problem when we arrived in town found that it was relatively simple thing to fix. Friend Neil Imlay suggested a trip to the local hardware shop for a replacement plug, screw the remains of the old one out and put the new one in! An exact match wasn’t to be had, but the replacement was more than adequate. All fixed up in about half an hour. Bought a couple of spares for next time!
We have been here in Birdsville now for 5 nights camped behind the Old Hospital Museum with a group of others, there are about 20 of us all up. We are all volunteers on a couple of activities organised by the Uniting Church (UC) capitalising on the presence of the crowds here in Birdsville for the annual race meeting. The Old Hospital complex is the base for us and is the location of the ‘Pancake Palace’. We have another stall located in the town centre selling souvenirs and various clothing items. It is located next to Fred Brophy’s travelling boxing tent and amongst all the other spruikers in town for the races. Our aim is to raise some funds to restore parts of the hospital museum, which dates back over a hundred years and was founded by UC forerunners, as well as help fund the work of the UC in the outback.
Since arriving Homealone and Allthego, assisted by friends Neil and Dianne Imlay, have put time into both the pancakes and the souvenirs, it has been a rewarding experience as well as a bit tiring. It is starting to warm up out here in the west and yesterday we had quite a dust storm, although not like you see on the TV. It was really just a strong wind blowing dust around the place. It nevertheless drained the energy tanks.
With the races starting today (31st August) and continuing tomorrow with the main program the crowds have started to build up in town, although some have said they are not as big as last year. We are off to the races tomorrow afternoon for all the action.
We have visited a couple of the iconic attractions here in town, the old hotel and the more modern bakery. It was the Sunday roast at the pub and a cold beer. At the Bakery it was a bit of a mixed bag, egg and bacon sangers and a curried camel pie. Homealone avoided the camel pie and instead had a chunky beef pie. Both of the establishments do a roaring trade.
Now it’s off to bed to for a good sleep and an early start on the stall before race time at 1pm!