1 September - Bush Camp 60 km West of Cobar
Not a lot of excitement on the road today, just a long haul, with more to come as we cross the far western plains of New South Wales. We are literally at the 'Back of Bourke,' heading North East towards more civilised climes.
Our only stop today was in the once-grand town of Wilcannia, a ghost town in the making if there ever was one! Some beautiful stone public buildings are well-maintained as government offices. The remainder of the town is gradually crumbling away. Businesses have moved out, leaving blocks of vandalised buildings in what was once a thriving Darling River town. Very sad!
2 September – Barwon River bank
Six months ago, while travelling in South Africa, we commented, perhaps a little unkindly on the level of security in South African towns. We noted at the time that some towns seemed to have far less need for security in both commercial and domestic areas that others. Over the past couple of days we have seem much the same thing in western NSW. Places like Wilcannia and Burke are not much different to South African towns of the same size. Burnt-out buildings, roller-shutters on shops and barbed wire compounds. On the other hand, Cobar is thriving, open and apparently far safer than its two neighbours. No shutters or barbed-wire there.
One has to wonder why the difference?