Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Albany, Western Australia

Today I made contact with a liaison officer from the Albany City Council who is to facilitate the installation of a few Mac computers at the Noongar Centre. This centre is catering for aboriginal youth in the south of W.A. where there have been a number of suicides.

I am unsure if computers will be the panacea, but they cannot but do some good to keep kids busy and entertained. We are prepared to travel south some 410 kilometres to install the machines and give basic instructions on their use. Albany is a lovely historic town which unfortunately has no need for a sunglasses is mostly grey and overcast. Photos when and if we go South.

Tonight on ABC television there was a nice look back at the role of goats in early Australian history.

It reminded me of my foray into goats when we lived in Papua New Guinea. Each time we drove to the coast from Maprik to Wewak in the Sepik district, we saw goats in the coconut plantations near Wewak. I decided that the school should have goats and we could get real milk rather than the terrible Tetra Packs of LongLife milk available at the time. I decide to buy a small herd of 15 goats and had them transported to the school. Wrong!!!

They were not welcomed by the Agriculture Department and they would not give me any assistance when the first goat succumed to bloat. Bloat is a gaseous condition caused by consumption of young fodder creating a fermentation in the rumen. The only advice that I received was a combination of 'Kill em all!' and from a kindly Ag. Officer...'shove a screwdriver in its rumen to let the gas out' . I couldn't do the screwdriver surgery, so drenched the goat with peanut oil which stopped the fermentation.

The goat problem was solved soon after, by striking students who were unhappy about billy goats urinating over their mess tables. Goats were sold and I cannot imagine why we didn't eat them. Many things I have done could have been done better.

No comments: