I have been coming and going from the same remote town in northern Australia for ten and a half years. I keep planning my departure. It happens, and then it happens again… and again. I keep coming back.
Why? Why this small town of 10 000? Why this small town at the centre of a vast region of emptiness, full of vegetation but lacking people?
I don’t know.
The annual country show is on this weekend. I entered some of my photos and my daughter has entered some biscuits and cupcakes. Rainbow ones. We went to drop them off today and every single person I ran into, whether they be a judge, a volunteer, an entrant, I knew enough to say hello to or enough to enquire about some small aspect of their life. I work with them, used to work with them, once lived next door to them, socialise with them once in a while, know their children through friendships with my daughter.
Being a reformed change-junkie I try to deny that this experience gives me pleasure, some small feeling of connectedness.
But it does.
Here are a few of my photos. If I win first prize I get $10 (gotta love small towns). I couldn’t resist to add a little colour and culture where possible and chose to enter some of my absolute favourite photos from my time as a teacher trainer, going around to the recipient schools and attending parent meetings etc, in the Upper East and Northern Regions of Ghana back in 2007.