THE LOCH ARD DISASTER
The 18 passengers and 36 crew on the iron-hulled clipper Loch Ard had a party on the night of March 31, 1878, to celebrate their arrival in Melbourne the next day after a three month voyage from England. But Captain Gibb stayed on deck all night, worried by the thick mist that obscured the horizon and Cape Otway light. At 4am the mist lifted and the lookout cried: "Breakers ahead." Despite desperate attempts to turn the ship away -- and then to hold it with its anchors -- it struck rocks. water flooded in, the masts flailed against the high cliff face before crashing down and waves swept across the decks, hampering attempts to get the lifeboats into the water. Only two survived -- ship's apprentice Tom Pearce and Eva Carmichael, both aged 18. Eva's parents and five siblings were lost. Tom drifted into the gorge where he saw passenger Eva clinging to a mast -- he swam out, pulled her into a cave and found some brandy in the wreckage to revive her. He climbed out of the gorge and came upon two stockmen, and a rescue party was organised. But only four bodies -- including Eva's mother and sister, were able to be recovered from the treacherous seas and most of the ship's valuable cargo was lost or looted. Tom Pearce became a national hero for his rescue of Eva, who soon returned to Ireland.
A few days after the disaster a packing case washed up in the gorge. It contained a life-sized Minton pottery peacock destined for the Melbourne Great Exhibition of 1880
The Outback is the arid sparsely populated interior of Australia.
It makes up almost 85% of Australian landmass. Very few humans live out there.
It is also sometimes called "Beyond the Black Stump".
The Australian Outback is both harsh and breathtakingly beautiful. It's like nothing else anywhere else in the world.
A ROAD TO NEVER-NEVER
In the outback you can travel for days without meeting anyone. This is why it is sometimes called the Never-Never: the never ending landscape; the never ending horizon.
The land is unforgiving to the careless and foolhardy. You can die of dehydration within hours if you are not careful.
Yes people actually do live in the outback.
Cattle and sheep are grazed on huge tracts of land called Stations (what might be called a ranch in the USA). There are Stations in the outback that occupy more land than some countries. Helicopters and small planes are usually used to round up stock (the sheep and cattle) and to check fences (dingo and rabbit fences).
A person who rounds up stock is called a Stockman. A person who works at a Station is called a Stationhand. The owner is called a Station-Manager
The vast distances have forced people to adapt to their isolation (some people being more than a day's drive from their nearest neighbor). A two-way radio and an airstrip are vital to any outback station.
Because of the great distances some children in the outback cannot attend regular school. They learn from the School of the Air which is a special school where the teacher and student interact via a two-way radio.
Here is a fascinating school in the outback run by the Mupuru aboriginal community . Its really worth a visit: The Mapuru Homeland Leaning Centre
The Royal Flying Doctor Service operates a fleet of airplanes outfitted as flying ambulances and clinics. They visit these remote locations to provide medical services. They also provides advice over the two-way radio.
Uluru: Is a huge rock (called a monolith) that sticks out in the middle of the flat desert. From a distance it looks like an impregnable fortress built eons ago by some mythical warlord.
Uluru is over nine kilometres (6 miles) around and over 348 metres (1000ft) high. It is believed to be about 600 million years old and was once part of a huge mountain range. The mountain range has long since disappeared - eroded away by rain and wind.
With each passing hour as the sun moves across the sky the rock changes colour - changing from delicate mauve, blues, pinks, browns to fiery red.
It is a sacred place to the Pitjanjara Aboriginal tribe.
Devils Marbles: These massive boulders are scattered along the Stuart Highway near Alice Springs. They glow red in the sunset. Aborigines believe they were left by the Rainbow Serpent of the Dreamtime.
Реферат опубликован: 23/05/2009