Monday, December 20, 2010


It's mine. A strange thing to say for someone who believes 'property is theft'. Perhaps I appropriated Pierre-Joseph Proudhon's refrain having grown up in a little hamlet by the sea and saw the property boom driven by real estate agents, speculators and sea changers. Perhaps it is a grumpy reaction to the realisation that unless I marry a lawyer, become a FIFO* miner or write a best seller, I would seriously struggle to afford a home in the place that nurtured me. The latter grumpiness is more plausible.

But the speculators did help our Great Southern Land double exponentially in price over the last few years and the real estate agents (or at least the flunkies who really wanted to sell houses but got stuck with dirty, filthy renters) held the roofs over our heads in their sweaty, bargaining palms.

If I sound a bit wild, that is because I am, or have been. It got to the point in the early part of this year where I was beside myself with crankiness about my situation. So I went for a drive east, past the strange magic of the Fitzgerald and found a place for sale, for an amount that was 'gatherable'.

I fell in love with the white quartz country there. The last night I camped there, possums clicked in the trees around me and I listened to ABC's Port Augusta. Mary McKillop had just been sainted in Rome and South Australia was all abuzz. I discovered later that the township of Kundip is the home for three species of plants that are endemic to the area, including two that haven't even been named yet. Kundip is near Hopetoun and the Cullen Inlet (handy for a girl with a penchant for mullet). Twice the town has thrived with people after gold and twice the town has died and all its building dismantled and taken away. My block is the site of the old green grocer's shop. Down the track is the ruins of the pub's cellar.

*FIFO: Fly in Fly out: Western Australian language for workers who live down south and fly north to work in the mines. The work usually involves a shift of two weeks on, one week off and the workers live in 'dongas', transportable accomodation.


  1. Gorgeous! Quartz means the land has special 'energetic' properties. Don't feel bad, happens to us all Sarah. I refuse to believe that you and I will ever be 'mainstream' kind of people, but some things are just about being a human being who wants a sense of homeland.

  2. Thanks Michelle, yes it is a special, quite addictive place.

  3. I was going to say something about owning land - or buying - it but it leads on to inevitable comparisons. Satisfaction, I think, is probably an apt word..