Migration and a working life
I migrated to Australia in 1990 and worked my way around Australian mining companies. Repairing, servicing, maintaining and operating truly monstrous mining machines was rough ’n tough as it gets.
The hard ’n tough work in dangerous ball mills, conveyor systems, crushing and screening plants and many other rough equipment made me somewhat tougher to face the remoteness of Australian deserts and the way of living in such vastness – wich I truly love.
With all those years in the Australian mining and maintenance services I learned that out in the bush nothing really matters but the stars above, those diesel fumes, them noises of heavy trucks passing by and a good yarn beside a campfire combined with a can or stubbie of fine Oz Beer in your days off.
So much time I spent with some buddy along the shores of WA’s Karratha, Broome, Port Hedland or in QLD’s mining hub of Mackay, at the sandy beaches of Trinity Beach or at a tavern in Port Douglas; we went campin‘ ’n fishin‘ in the far far north of the vast Arnhem Land and we always had a hell of a good time out ’n about.
In fact: I made it to places where most Australians never get to.
And I am proud of it.
Working in mining was one thing I was used to by tradesmanship of being a diesel fitter. But I also worked with Australian, German, Dutch or US tour businesses and made my experiences throughout Australian tourism by selling and guiding tours and accompanying groups on their ways in exploring the Australian outback.
Some fifty thousand miles on the vast Australian highways and desert tracks took me around the country. I always loved to walk those magnificent northern rainforests with their flora and fauna so plentyful or wander across snow covered southern mountains, the western desert plains or the northern Territory’s magnificent springs and crocodile infested rivers…
I was in awe by Kookaburra talking, Kangaroo hoppin‘ and Koala snackin‘, visited (and tried to understand) Aboriginee culture and breathed in the hot desert air whilst gazing at those billion stars above in many a clear and often chilly night.
Even after all those years there is only one wish coming up again and again: I want to return. But that’s a rather complicated thing if one is 57 and visa are harder to come by these days.
And just to mention, the Blue Winged Kookaburry with its extraordanary call was (and maybe stil is) the bird that I personally associate with my life in the Australian nature the most.
Blue winged Kookaburra
The Blue-winged Kookaburra (Dacelo leachii) is a species of bird native to northern Australia, Papua New Guinea, and the Aru Islands. It is a member of the kingfisher family (Alcedinidae) and is closely related to the more well-known Laughing Kookaburra.
Here are some key characteristics of the Blue-winged Kookaburra
Appearance: The Blue-winged Kookaburra is a large bird measuring about 35 to 40 cm (14 to 16 inches) in length. It has a stocky build, a large head, and a long, sturdy beak. The upperparts are mostly dark brown with blue wings, hence its name. The underparts are whitish with faint brown barring. It has a white stripe above its eye, and the face is mostly white with a distinctive dark patch through the eye.
Habitat: This species inhabits a variety of habitats, including open woodlands, savannahs, and forests near water. It can be found in both tropical and subtropical regions, particularly in areas with standing water, such as rivers, lakes, and swamps.
Behavior: Like other kookaburra species, the Blue-winged Kookaburra is known for its loud and distinctive call, which resembles a loud, echoing laugh. The call is usually a series of melodious, cackling notes that can be heard over long distances. These birds are territorial and often seen in pairs or small family groups.
Diet: The Blue-winged Kookaburra feeds primarily on insects, reptiles, small mammals, and birds. It is known to catch its prey by swooping down from a perch and grabbing it with its strong beak. It may also eat fruits and seeds, particularly during the dry season when food sources are scarce.
Breeding: Breeding occurs during the wet season, which is typically from October to February. The female usually lays two to three white, glossy eggs in a tree hollow. Both parents take turns incubating the eggs and caring for the chicks once they hatch.
Conservation status: The Blue-winged Kookaburra is classified as a species of Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). While it faces threats such as habitat loss and fragmentation, it has a wide distribution and stable populations throughout its range.
The Blue-winged Kookaburra is a fascinating bird known for its striking appearance, distinct call, and remarkable hunting abilities. Its presence adds to the diverse avian fauna found in the regions it inhabits.
Source Picture Rolf Göbel, text excerpt Chatgpt
So I just keep dreaming of the Kookaburra calling me.
If you can, go buddy – you won’t regret it. 🙂