The worst summer ever?

December 17, 2018


38 years.  It’s a long time isn’t it?  But it has gone by so quickly.  That’s how long I have lived here at Kilcowera.  In those years I have seen the countryside go through so many changes.  The most enduring of these is drought – living in this part of the world one expects it to be fairly dry.  Visitors come here and marvel at the endless blue skies, the clear starry nights and the perfect weather.  We would be happier with a few more rain events!


A dust storm from the nineties – they are still the same.

My morning walks have become  extremely tedious as I pass by dead bushes and trees, picking my feet up over the corrugations, so much bull dust and the constant flies keeping pace with me.  The huge dust storms are smothering the trees.  The dust gets in everywhere, I just clean the house from the last one and the next one is upon us.  Sometimes we wake in the morning to find our world is just blanketed by a white haze – dust from way out west somewhere.  Thank goodness I have my little dogs who bring me such joy and delight.  They don’t care about the drought, they’re just happy!  Must keep looking at them!


Cardenyabba Lagoon and our airstrips

It’s much better for me to remember things like seeing fish and yabbies swimming down the road and Cardenyabba Lagoon full of water and birdlife.  The abundance of wildflowers after winter rain, the shield shrimp in the claypans, the dewy, sticky carnivorous plants that grow on the margins of swamps. Full dams and fat, shiny cattle. Going for an early morning fly around the property and seeing water everywhere and green on the ground. The way this country bounces back after rain is astonishing, the variety of grasses and herbage that springs up is mind blowing and then the insects and frogs follow to take up residence once again.


I’ve got to remember that there are occasions when I am not constantly moving hoses around, watering lawns, trees and gardens. And that we are not alone in this horrible drought – that there are tens of thousands of other farmers and graziers doing it just as tough as we are.  I’m lucky that I at least have plenty of bore water to keep most of my garden and lawn alive.  And keep looking at those happy little terriers of mine because they make me smile.  But summer is upon us and it’s a very dry outlook, the next few months without any rain will be devastating.  Happy Christmas.


Lucy and Maisie in, on the Lagoon