Day 12…

TITLE: Custard.

Breakfast is served at 5.30am. The guest quarters however were extra comfy and I woke up at 8am. Seven hours sleep, the most I’d had in months! “Smoko” is at 9.30am and at this time of day Maz serves up the works, homemade sausage rolls that are, I guarantee you, twice as good as you think is the best you’ve ever eaten. Scones on steroids with jam and cream, carrot cake that’s out of this world and plenty of fresh fruit. I might have missed breakfast but I was certainly not about to go hungry!

Fred and Jason had gone out on a bore run, bores need to be maintained – they pump water from the depths into a network of ‘turkey nests’ (water storage ponds) and troughs. Fred with Georgia and Jason with Matt they took off early in different directions with a packed lunch and a long but interesting day ahead. I on the other hand was going to spend the day catching up with Maz, after four years we had plenty to talk about!

In the afternoon I went out with Matt (another Matt) and Georgia to “get a killer.” Why? Well when in Rome. Matt would select a beast to euthanise humanely for personal consumption. It’s a cattle station after all, not having beef on the menu would be a crime and everything else is quite expensive given the remote location. And so it began, I was propped up between Matt and Georgia in the front of the land cruiser ute as we took off on the dirt roads to check out the first of three paddocks, the third of which was where Matt found “the one.”

The truck with the crane had been caught up on another job and was running a little late so the cruiser was driven to steer the cow away from the heaving herd in an attempt to keep it there while we waited. Soon it was time, Matt took the rifle and took aim, I had my camera poised. For what purpose I would ever use the photo I did not know but out of habit more than anything I took aim too. A shot fired, I jumped ten feet off the ground and I’m now the owner of an image of a cow that could be any cow in the world sleeping on the ground. We drove up alongside it. It couldn’t be mistaken for being asleep on closer inspection. I’ll skip a little here because as humanely as it was done it was never going to be pretty.

The next stage was for it to be skinned, knives out, these two had it down to a fine art. Mid way through Georgia turned to me and asked, “Have we turned you into a vegetarian?”
“No.” I replied. “But I’ve gone right off custard,” I said having forgotten what fat looks like before it cools and hits the supermarket shelves.
The truck had arrived so I watched it being loaded onto the crane and hoisted onto the back of the trailer before jumping in the cruiser and heading back to the station, just in time for dinner. A station favourite, crumbed Anthony Lagoon steak and veggies. And… there was custard with dessert!

TIP: Sleep in, get up for “smoko” – a luxury afforded only to visitors I know, but still it was win win!

TRACK: The Waifs – 6000 miles

KMS: 21

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