You’ve just got to love the landscape, the flora and fauna, that makes the Australian Outback what it is!
photo: Baz – The Landy
But I can’t wait to get back into training for the climb in Nepal this coming November, but slowly does it…
And Janet & TomO have been fantastic, as usual, although Janet was heard to quip to a friend the other day, that keeping me resting is like telling our beautiful Border Collie, MilO, to sit still.
A bit like herding cats, she laughed…
Thanks to all for your wonderful messages of support, the best way I can repay your kind thoughts is to stand tall on those big mountains I want to climb, and give you a window into the beautiful Australian Outback at other times…
Cheers, Baz, The Landy
Its actual name is the Gilbert’s Dragon, Amphibolurus Gilbert.
But that’s a bit like calling Baz – The Landy, Barry Thomas O’Malley, so let’s just stick with Ta-Ta Lizard…
And checkout the size of its tail and back feet!
We took this photograph whilst Out and About in one of our favourite outback places, Lawn Hill Gorge, a spectacular oasis in a barren land…
And okay, I get it, not everyone likes reptiles, and we’ve got plenty of them over here, many that are best avoided, but crikey, he is cute, don’t you think so?
“Janet, Macci is stuck under the house and he can’t get out; the children are distressed, Macci’s distressed, I’m distressed – help!”
Our friend, we’ll just call her Kimbalee, was wondering whether to call the fire-brigade to come and do a rescue, but thought to ring for advice first and to see if I could help…
I was happy to help, after all Macci knew me, and, well, I could pretend I was a fiery as I sped towards her house in my fire-engine red Landrover Defender, aptly named, “Red Rover”.
After all, firemen regularly do this sort of stuff, right?
It was a win-win situation…this was gunna be fun!
Strewth, he was stuck all right.
I spent some time working out how I would navigate my way through and over the air-conditioning ducts and through the small openings in the brick work.
I mean, if Macci was having trouble how in hell would I get through, I thought…
There it was in my mind’s eye, a vision of the fierys’ turning up to rescue a Lagotto Romagnolo named Macci, and some yobbo pretending to be a fiery with a pretend fire truck parked out front…
The embarrassment of it all…
Crikey, Bluey and the boys down at the Rugby Club would have a field day with it.
I could just see it, everytime a fire-engine went past with sirens sounding they’d be joking it was on its way to “pick Baz up”.
Nah, there was no doubting, I couldn’t mess this rescue up, far too much at stake.
And then, of course, there was Macci to consider!
After crawling the length of the building, through small openings, over the house’s heating system, with little room to spare between the dusty ground and the floor above, I eventually found him.
I wouldn’t be a laughing stock down at the club after all Macci was safe!
My new found euphoria didn’t last long!
He just sits there and looks at me, just out of arm’s reach.
His demeanor suggested he was concerned I’d also been caught out playing in this underground labyrinth, an underground cesspit that might end up being our final resting place; our tomb.
For crying out loud, didn’t the bloody drongo realise I was his salvation?
Okay, perhaps if I was a 15-kilogram something animal, being pursued by a 95-kilo something bigger animal, in a scene straight out of an Indiana Jones movie, I might also be just a little hesitant…
But strewth, I wasn’t in here chasing some rat that had long ago exited the building and was now feasting from the neighbour’s garbage bin.
I was the
pretend fiery rescuer here to save him…
They say dogs have good hearing, so I suspect he heard what I called him even if it was under my breath!
After all, I was cautious to whisper the profanities that were spewing from my mouth as the children were following my progress standing on the floorboards just inches above my head…
Macci learnt some new words last night, but hey, I think we forged a new bond.
Well, that is what I thought anyway.
He sprinted out into the children’s anxious arms, reunited, safe, like the prodigal son coming home…
I spent another 10 minutes negotiating my way, torch fading, worrying how many funnel web spiders were within striking distance. We’re heading into their mating season and they’d be none-to-happy with this intrusion to their love-making…
“G’day Macci” I said as I extracted myself from under the house, my best army fatigues covered in dust and dirt.
Stone the bloody crows…the
little mongrel affectionate family pet just looks at me with disinterest.
Kind a like… “You again, I thought you were stuck somewhere under the house like me”…
“Glad your safe Macci” I thought. At least Bluey and the boys won’t have anything to hang-on me…well not on account of this occassion anyway.
By the time I got home I was amped up for my training session, even if it was a couple of hours later than planned. And those Bose speakers rang out Black Sabbath like there was no tomorrow!
Anyway, the subject line is true, but possibly I’m being a little harsh on myself, although Janet has just called out that I did kidnap the dog,
“pure and simple Baz…”
But let me explain.
Firstly, I love Great Dane’s they are so majestic looking and all the ones I have met have been very well natured. Mind you, a suburban back-yard is probably not big enough for them to run around in and perhaps the reason you don’t tend to see them in the city.
Back in those days we had little money to spare, not that we needed it, crikey, sitting in those two sofa chairs, gazing into each other’s eyes, before retiring to the only other piece of furniture we owned, the bed, popping jellybeans into that jar like rabbits on a mission…
Mind you, we’re still happy to do that these days, but a 12 year old son, who is on the cusp of puberty, usually walks in just at the inopportune time.
We didn’t own any white goods back then, you know, a washing machine to clean our clothes, so this was done at the local shops where there was a Laundromat. Now I can say that is a place I haven’t been in a very long time, a Laundromat…
Every few days we’d make the trip together, happily sitting there watching the dryer spin around until it was time to head home and sit in the sofa chairs, well you know, until it was time to
put another jelly bean in the jar retire again…
Anyway, on one particular evening Barney, the Great Dane turns up, he looked lost and was hanging around. And even if I say so myself he took an instant liking to me.
A Great Dane, my favourite!
It didn’t take long to convince myself that he was an orphan, after all he had no tag and he was rummaging around the bins seemingly looking for a feed.
So I quickly dashed home in Janet’s little Ford Anglia, a Harry Potter car, to get him a feed of mince. It didn’t take long, but by the time I returned Janet broke the news. He’d left.
“How could that happen” I asked?
This dog loved me.
Concerned for his well being I hopped in the little Ford Anglia and headed down the back streets to find him, to give Barney a good meal,
to kidnap him, and a good home. After all he was neglected, clearly, surely?
My heart raced, there he was, looking forlorn, standing dejectedly outside a large home with a large wooden gate.
Yes, he recognised me.
Okay, in hindsight it might have been the mince I had in my hand that I was offering up, but strewth, I was as happy as a pig in
Now this was the tricky bit, but I did get Barney inside that little Ford Anglia, eventually. It was a bit squashy, especially once Janet hopped in with a basket of clean washing.
We I was excited as a new dad bringing the family home for the very first time. And Barney settled in well, those first couple of nights he just sat back and lapped up all that attention. But geez, have you seen what these things can eat?
Bloody hell, this was at a time in our lives that we managed baked beans on toast every couple of days if we were frugal. We didn’t even have two brass razoo’s to rub together. And a good night out was spent in the sofa chairs starring lovingly into each other’s eyes…
A few days later, as inevitable as the sun rising in the east, there it was, a lost notice in the window of the local shops.
“Much loved pet, a Great Dane, lost a few days ago in the local area. Brown in colour.”
Whoops, the description sounded just like Barney.
The person at the other end of the phone sounded lovely, distraught, and anxious for any news.
She didn’t live too far away so we decided to walk Barney “home.”
And home was behind a large wooden gate, yep, the one in which I had coaxed Barney away from with my offering of mince only a few days earlier. His owner was elated, and Barney reunited himself in a scene reminiscent of Fred and Dino straight out of the Flinstones…
She couldn’t thanks us enough for looking after her best friend while we tried to track her down.
Yes, we loved Barney, and still think of him fondly, but I’m sure he would have sent us broke before heading back home.