Put your laughing gear around this. It’s Australia Day, 26th January, once again.
Whether you are one of the 25% who disagree with the date and want it altered, or not, enjoy the day...let's Aussies enjoy and love our country...Australia.
You can bet your bottom dollar if the date is changed there will still be some who won’t like the chosen new date. We don’t all agree with each other all the time, on all things, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be civil, or friends. In a democratic society one is allowed to be an individual – free to be an individual...to have one’s own individual thoughts and beliefs.
What I believe, you may not...but that doesn’t
make you my enemy or me, yours....I'm just sayin', cobber!
However, enough of that...as far as
I’m concerned, we’ve had enough discord lately, everywhere we look...here, there and everywhere...
I’m still a “Happy Little
Vegemite”...and, unlike some others, I like to load my toast with lashings of
Vegemite...no faint, light-handed spreading of the spread for me. See...my individual choice, and taste...
Also, throughout my childhood in the late 40s through the 50s, Peanut Paste was what we/I called “Peanut Paste”...never did we/I call it “Peanut Butter”. So through The Noughties I shall continue to be naughty. and shall continue referring to the peanut spread as, “Peanut Paste”.
Old habits...and tastes are hard to break...I have no intention of breaking these ones.... Forget the ‘spoonfuls of sugar”....just allow me to have spoonfuls of Peanut Paste!
The term has been used in rural Queensland, Australia, as a synonym for peanut butter. This followed pressure from dairy farmers who did not want peanut butter competing with butter for market share.
The product was known in Western Australia and South Australia for many years as peanut paste because, by definition, butter is a dairy product. The same product was available in other states as peanut butter. Manufacturers complained about having to produce different labels for different states and the Western Australian government changed the rules on the use of the word butter to allow for one set of labels.
Every day is Australia Day...for example...a day in 1992...
In a quaint little Suzuki 4WD, with just me for company, I was driving along the 119km winding dirt track between Collinsville and Glenden, up in the Bowen Basin. There was not another soul within cooee.
In a world of my own, listening to the car radio, I trundled along happily. As I rounded a bend, I got the shock of my life when I found myself eye to eye with an emu at my driver’s side window. It looked at me in equal wide-eyed surprise. The emu’s head was level with mine. True blue!
I’m not sure who received the biggest shock, the emu or me! By the look on its face before taking off at break-neck speed across the nearest paddock, the long-legged bird hadn’t expected its solitude to be rudely interrupted, either. He’d probably been listening to John Williamson’s “Old Man Emu” on his Walkman!
After pulling into the Emu Beach Holiday Park at Emu Park, a small coastal town south-east of Rockhampton, Central Queensland aka Capricorn Coast, during a trip north with my then husband, Randall back in the early 80s, the first thing I did, as I always did when checking into the various caravan parks, was head off to inspect the ablutions’ block. (I have written about this particular episode in an earlier post...)
Upon exiting the building I received a hell of a surprise. Waiting for me at the doorway was a group...six or eight....of very curious emus. The long-necked critters were very keen to learn everything and anything they could about me and my travels!
Over at our campsite Randall was looking on laughing his head off. He’d been eagerly awaiting my reaction when I came face to face with the group of the world’s second largest living birds...the inquisitive throng of Australia’s largest native birds, which was waiting for me to exit the building! (I don’t qualify as Aussie’s largest bird...the emu beats me legs down...or up!)
Eungella National Park west of Mackay is an area worth visiting, not only for its beauty but for the numerous animal species who call the area “home”.
Included among the many rare and unusual creatures is a most unique animal...unique to Australia...the platypus.
The drive through the Pioneer Valley up to Eungella, high on the Clarke Range is one worth
taking. During one of my visit to the beautiful area when I was living and working in Mackay in early 1998, I had the good
fortune to spot a platypus in the waters of Broken River, Eungella National
Park. Such pretty, shy little animals they are.
Where but in Australia can one be enjoying a leisurely lunch only to be interrupted by a kangaroo trying to snatch a ring off one’s finger? Cape Hillsborough Resort is where!
I was enjoying a pleasant lunch with a friend, when, unawares
to me, a huge roo sauntered up behind me. The ill-mannered roo took a fancy to
a ring on my right hand. He was
determined to have it, the cheeky devil! You can imagine my surprise, I am sure, when I felt a tug at my hand!
The roos at Cape Hillsborough are massive and many, with no table manners! They think they own the place. They are not to be messed with.
The wallabies on Hinchinbrook Island believed the resort’s dining area was theirs. There are no kangaroos on Hinchinbrook Island, but the wallaby population make up for their absence.
Mr. B, the Wallaby was the leader of the pack. He had balls, even if he only had one. He lost a ball in an argument with a car on the highway at Cardwell when he was a joey still in his mother’s pouch. He didn't go nuts over the loss, though. After losing his mother, and his ball, Mr. B had a ball living on the island.
Mr. B was a star of stage and screen...literally. At one point in his career he'd been flown to Melbourne to appear (star) on a national television variety show!
Only in Australia...any day of the year....anywhere....
Vegemite-Cheese Scrolls: Pre-heat oven to 220C. Sift 3c self-raising flour and pinch salt into bowl. Rub in 50g cold butter until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Using 1-1/2c milk, stir in enough milk to make a soft dough. Knead on lightly-floured surface. Roll to form a rectangle, roughly 40cmx25cm. Spread vegemite over the dough using flat knife. Sprinkle over 1c grated cheese. Roll up dough starting from long side first. Cut 10x4cm pieces from the roll. Place pieces close together, cut side up, on a greased baking tray. Sprinkle grated cheese over top. Bake 10-15mins, or until golden.
Peanut Paste Crunchies: Preheat the oven 200 C. Cream 1/2c white sugar and 1/2c firmly packed light brown sugar with 1/2c butter and 1/2c crunchy peanut paste until light and fluffy. Beat 1 large egg and 1/2tsp vanilla extract into the mixture until smooth and well blended. In separate bowl, combine 1-1/2c plain flour, 1/2tsp salt and 1/2tsp baking soda. Gradually, blend flour mixture into creamed ingredients. Using lightly floured hands, shape dough into 1-inch balls; place balls 2-inches apart on paper-line baking tray. Dip a fork in flour each time and press on balls. Dust each flattened ball with additional white sugar, if desired. Bake for about 7mins, or until lightly browned around edges.