Friday at Yelvertoft

This post will be written with my Sydney audience in mind…
There are a surprising number of assumptions made on the part of both city and country folk and I am standing smack bang in between them. There are times even now where I forget that city folk just have no idea… I had to stop myself and put myself back in my city life shoes, to remember that the little details I encountered here are in fact worth telling.

I did not think I was excited to be going to Yelvertoft. I was eager enough and definitly looking forward to it but on thursday night I did not sleep much. I got 4.5 hours in the end. Guess that’s a pretty good indicator. The 6:30 brekky was hard cos I was too ready…

New things I have now done.
>Traveling in a truck with 6 horses in the back of it. I went to Yelvertoft with Narda and her horses. We left before 8 am and stopped in Dajeerah, then Mt Isa. Fun fact: horses will poo in transit, but they will not pee. You therefore need to stop long enough at any given stage of your journey and give them time to empty their bladder. Part of the waiting game also includes them horses working out that you are stopped but not intending to unload them.
>Going to Mt Isa (as a passenger) and being able to see where I’m going, not just watching the road. (I don’t remember much of the road between Sydney and Boulia.) That is again a bit further north than I have been in Australia. I enjoyed watching the scenery change as the kilometers clicked over. It still does my head in a little that a function such as a campdraft is “only 500km away” which is only 5 hours driving in a car or more in a truck.
>Helping to set up the Glenormiston camp at Yelvertof including being able to help move horses by their lead. Yep, I wasn’t a total waste of space. I got to assist in setting up the small horse yard which is just a few sticks in the ground with a bit of electric nylon tape around it. Horses hate the shock so much that you can get away with not making it a live fence during the day. So there i was being told to just do this and me going “ok” all the while knowing that I have know idea how to actually do that. But hopefully, I’ll be better at that next time cos I asked some of the ringers to show me properly afterwards. My biggest problem there was not that I don’t know how but more that I don’t know the language to go with the task.
>Sleeping in my swag, on my stretcher, under the stars, beside a truck, next to hay, not far from horses and their poo, and close enough to the diesel genny to smell the fumes of that a bit too… All that is cool.


Assumptions on both sides:
When I go camping, especially for a weekend only, I go where there is not much: a hole in the ground toilet and no water.
When I said what do I need to bring? I was told clothes and money for the bar, and a swag. turns out its a bit more than that….
Here’s what else I didn’t know: there are showers and that is the norm (lucky I had some toiletries), it’s good to bring a camp chair, a big bottle of water (5-10L), an esky filled with ice and drinks is good too. We have tea, coffee, bread and spreads, and a few bbq bits and pieces but mostly they buy food. Bacon and Egg Rolls are $8, a milkshake is $6 and a roast Pork roll is $7.

After the set up, it was time to kick back and enjoy a beer… or two… I had fun with the ringers. Made them laugh a bit when some pretty quick side comments… thanks to my years of practicing at the dinner table.

Then its off to the bar for I crazy night of too much alcohol, loud music and general noise for my comfort.


Author: Jess

I am an ILLUSTRATOR (unpublished except for this page here) a COOK (feeding the hungry, to be as independent as possible and paying my own bills) and a COLLECTOR of INDIGO, stars, rainbow and paper.

3 thoughts on “Friday at Yelvertoft”

  1. found it!
    a stockworker; a cattle drover: *But the ordinary stockman, the ringers, rarely got good horses. –WENDY LOWENSTEIN, MORAG LOH, 1977.
    Macq. dictionary. I had to register for a free trial to find it.
    otherwise the ringer was someone who worked in the shearing shed (Click go the shears; the ringer was beaten by a blow)
    according to the ABC (Aunty) camp drafting is a growing sport for all sorts of people with an interest in horses
    looking forward to seeing more drawings from the event

    1. You know, a little patience and I would have given you an explanation… Just cos I’m not online all the time…

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