Living the Dream

7 12 2006


Monty and I have been taking our time, wandering around. Every so often I dip in to Enchanteur’s bag and pull out the red winged shoes she gave me ages ago. I gather my swag and Lord Montgomery and with two clicks of our heels we are where we need to be. Right now we are out of Dalby, camped under the shade of similar trees to that which my great grandfather, George Chale Watson, camped under in 1873 when he set out from Dalby after receiving his instructions to begin surveying. In my swag I have a copy of my great grandfather’s notes about ‘Building the Commonwealth’ and, as dusk falls and cool shadows surround us, I let myself wander back to another time. I hear a voice reading…

“It was in the year 1873 that I received my instructions to enter upon the very work which in 1861 I had set my mind upon when looking at the outline map of Australia, which stimulated me to reach the country which Burke and Wills had discovered. Destiny by a very circuitous course had accomplished the desire of my heart and given me instructions to make a feature survey of those great rivers and creeks which explorers, at the sacrifice of their lives, had made known to the world. Every inch of my circuitous route had supplied more serviceable information’s and experience that had in some way proved a preliminary part of my training.

My surveys in Mount Perry having proved financially advantageous enabled me to gather a respectable equipment, which I looked upon with some satisfaction of the proud possessor as I reviewed myself the owner of six horses, aspiring-cart, and harness, and an outfit of camp gear, all paid for. So confident was I of success and of opening a new chapter of my evolution that I embarked my very last shilling after having my home provided for for some mohths. I undertook the responsibility of engaging four assistants and travelling 600 miles to reach the starting point of my surveys.

In my prepatory arrangements invaluable assistance was given by my old friend, Mr. A.G. Gregory, the Surveyor General, in acquainting me with teh nature of the country where I was going, and the astronomical portion of my work would check his surveys. Every incident seemed to be an omen of good luck and I fairly started on my journey from the end of the railway line, then at Dalby, where I loaded my belongings and formed the order of march on a sunny Saturday in the beginning of November 1873.

At the end of the first day’s travel was selected an eligible camp for the approaching day of rest, which I much appreciated after the bustle and excitement of reaching Dalby by train with my equipment. In the enjoyment of a quiet camp, under the cool shade of a large tree I happen to take my reading out of the Book of Joshua, wherein I read: “Unto this people shall thou divide the land for an inheritance. Be strong and very courageous; There shall not be many man be able to stand before thee all the days of your life…..”




2 responses

7 12 2006

and of this,
and by this are thee made …
that the universe may be sureveyed as well,
dear friend —


8 12 2006

It is good to see you travelling with Lord Montgomery! I was tickled pink by this…


how does one aspire to be a cart 😉

Aspiring Crone

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