Hello again from Gayndah
I’ve been absent from your website for much longer than planned. Other priorities surreptitiously edged their way to the top - my very sincere apologies for the neglect. I promise to do better.
The effects of major floods in December/January in our region, and the accompanying widespread damage, have lingered on despite tireless efforts to restore the status quo. In Gayndah, roads, bridges, citrus orchards, farm infrastructure, houses and tourist sites were inundated by flood waters. Irrigators lost pumps, foot valves and dams, the riverwalk was devastated, the fairly new Mingo caravan park and high traffic bridge were covered in muddy water, and so on.
It was all bad news but lost its value in the wider media after our State capital Brisbane, Toowoomba and the Granite Belt to the south, Bundaberg, Maryborough and Gympie to the east and Rockhampton, Emerald and other centres to the north and north-west of us all suffered the same but on a bigger scale.
Then came the powerful Tropical Cyclone Yasi to show North Queensland that it wasn’t going to miss out on the ‘summer madness’ weather patterns that started with all that rain throughout December. Yasi left a trail of damage from the coast clear through to little north-western centres much further out, like Hughenden.
Now the monsoons are drenching many northern and western districts which are finding themselves back in flood mode. It has seemed that all of Queensland is a disaster zone, but that’s not the case at all. Plenty of areas were unaffected, with some still hoping for rain to end their current dry period. It’s very safe to visit if that’s your plan.
Since then, of course, killer earthquakes in Christchurch, New Zealand, and more recently (along with the tsunami) in Japan, have moved our experiences firmly onto the back burner, and so they should. We were lucky. We’re well into recovery mode, with no loss of life.
Highlights for Gayndah district last year included hosting 22 Zonhoven visitors to our town in May. It was the second such delegation of its size to make the trip since the inaugural sistertown agreement. Unfortunately its co-ordinator Marie-Claire Hulsmanns and her husband Roger Bas were unable to join the group but we welcomed them as special guests in November. It was wonderful to see and chat with so many of our Belgian friends, and we hope it won’t be the last of their visits.
It’s autumn here (spring over there – I hope it’s warming up for you), the best season of the year. A good time to visit, with its warm and usually fine days and cooler nights. The annual Gayndah show, a one-day event, will be held on April 9, with its attendant entertainment, livestock judging, rider events, rodeo, pavilion exhibits and competitions. Then the school’s first-term vacation and Easter long weekend. Anzac Day will be commemorated on April 25 (Easter Monday this year) with services throughout the morning. Australia marks Labour Day with a holiday too, on the first weekend in May. (We’re known as The Home Of The Long Weekends.)
Gayndah Orange Festival will be held on yet another long weekend – the Queen’s Birthday Weekend on June 10-12 - but more about that in a later issue.
A couple of exciting things happening here at the moment are the refurbishing of St Joseph’s Catholic Convent as a cultural arts centre, and the construction of a skate park in Lions Park. Both are Federal Government funded projects, and should be ready for use by the end of June.
Until next time,
Cheers, Jill Slack - 12 March 2011
Lees hier de vertaling.