Travelling slowly over the placid water the peace was interrupted when the guide announced he was heading close to the shore. On the bank at the water’s edge a Crocodile rested in the sun. Then another was sighted, and anther. Some juveniles, others almost four metres in length. One, about two metres in length, rested on a pad of greenery close to the water’s edge
From what appeared to be sleep, the reptile was suddenly in the water four or five metres from where it had been resting. The awesome strength of the reptile, the speed at which he moved indicated to all that this was a killing machine.
The boat ventured through the billabong as the guide pointed out vegetation and explained it uses, both as food and medicine. From the Billabong, the boat entered the South Alligator River. Wildlife and crocodiles were abundant.
In the evening, passengers were transported to the Mercure Kakadu Crocodile Hotel in Flinders Street, Kakadu. This was the night’s pleasant accommodation.
Next morning Will was waiting with his coach. A visit to a Rock Walk, Then the East Alligator River, where Robert was the Captain and Host who took the visitor into his own land and was guide for a boat journey on the river. Robert pointed out lily pads that provide edible seeds and other trees and plants used as medicine by his people. He also brought his fascinated guests close to crocodiles explaining many things the visitors would not otherwise have learned.
The boat berthed in Arnhem land and the passengers embarked in exploration; crossing the clean sandy beaches similar to those nestled in tiny bays all along the river. During this stop, Robert explained the use of a spear or throwing stick. Calling on of his one his younger members to take the weapon. Throwing the spear was demonstrated. With seemingly little effort the spear soured swiftly across the river bank and out over the waters of the East Alligator River, falling into the water more than half way across the wide river. A departing boat later recovered the spear.
Returning to the coach, Will took his passengers on as tour of Jabiru and the Ranger Uranium mine, two conical holes in the ground with a third envisaged for the near future.
With all that said, it is now time to reminisce on what has been learned about this land and introduce some perspective. The first people wisely say:-
“This earth, I never damage. I look after. Fire is nothing, just clean up. That means good animal soon, might be goanna, possum, wallaby. Burn him off. New grass coming up, new life all over.”
Another wise saying is “Burn now or it will be an inferno tomorrow.”
Let us examine a little of history.
In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, Marie Skłodowska-Curie, a naturalized-French physicist and chemist, conducted pioneering research on radioactivity. Radium was a product needed by Madame Curie for her research.
Eastman Kodak held most of the reserves of radium, enough to make an atomic Bomb and it was stored in New York
On August 6, 1945, the world changed. One of the men responsible for the development of the Atomic Bomb was Julius Robert Oppenheimer. an American theoretical physicist .
It was the start of the Peace Movement.
It is known that the first Australians have inhabited Kakadu for some Forty-thousand years. They say, “Our land has a big story. Sometimes we tell a little bit at a time … A little bit might stay in your hearts.” They say, “People need to come here and relax, sit on the country and go home and feel the same way.”
Maybe what the first people say is a big story?
One of the guides at Nourlangie Rock, while viewing the rock paintings commented on their age; some around forty-thousand-years old. While standing beneath a great rock overhang with a smooth ledge extending back into the rock, he spoke of his people who came to this place there was shelter and plentiful food. However, the first people were aware that it was
Rock Art: TheBark Hut Inn
Rock Overhangs The Gorge Scenery
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