Posts Tagged ‘Mimili’


The trip is complete. We were allowed to enter the APY Lands to visit Robert Stevens – the head of Fregon community – and now we have seen him. Bumping down the road to Indulkana a car stopped, and out he stepped. Thank you for this amazing opportunity!

Robert Stevens

Robert Stevens

We continued our tradition of stopping for a day in the aboriginal communities, and spent the day in Mimili with Helen and Kel. Another lovely day of talking and sharing stories, and of talking to the kids in the school. We spent the evening in the youth centre watching a debriefing of a football match in the Pitjinjinjara language, and meeting an energetic young aboriginal man that is in a new generation that ‘walks in both worlds’. He grew up with his aboriginal roots, but has studied and spent much time in the wider Australian society. He has a unique opportunity to lead, and improve the lot of the aboriginal people.

Helen and Kel

Helen and Kel

We are staying with a teacher from the school in Indulkana – a keen cyclist who will be joining us tomorrow cycling to Marla. Thanks, John for your great hospitality!

Car wreck

Car wreck


‘They live in the now. More than any people on the earth, the aboriginal people live in the now.’
Matt – the headmaster at Fregon had hit the nail on the head. Living in the now was from the life philosophy described by Eckhart Tolle and lots of other writers that I have read. All focus of thought and deed is now – no worrying about the past, and no thought of the future. Living life in the only time that exists – now. What a way to live.

Cooking kangaroo tails

Cooking kangaroo tails

Our minds have exploded in the last few days spending time in the aboriginal communities of the APY lands. We have stayed with the head of the community in Fregon and with school teachers in Ernabella and Fregon. We have talked to the kids in the schools about our bike trip and seen the excitement in their eyes. I always hope it might make a small difference to at least one. We have met many passionate people working in the schools, youth centres and art centres. These people do such inspiring work, living in a world of contradictions and questions where two cultures meet. We have stayed in more familiar homes of the non-aboriginal school teachers, and have seen the more outdoor life of the aboriginal people whose homes themselves are rather bare and a far cry from anywhere I have ever lived.

Art centre

Art centre

Art centre

Art centre

Artwork

Artwork

Painting

Painting

Aboriginal people don’t have a notion of ownership. If family asks for something you need to give it. This concept really is so different and at the core of aboriginal culture. The sense of ownership is at the core of the western culture, which means the two cultures must clash. There is little incentive to work, and material possessions only play a transitive role in people’s lives. If they can be used now they are. In the future they will use whatever is around at that time. I find this all very difficult to grasp – I realise how far I am from understanding these people, and am very pleased to also talk to non-aboriginals to try to understand it all just a little bit better.

Kid

Kid

Jude

Jude

We stayed our second night in Fregon with Claudia and Jessie – working at the school – a fun evening with lots of laughing. We spent all the morning and the first part of the afternoon continuing our walk around the community talking to lots of different people and finally managed to leave just before 2. Leaving Fregon we were passed by a youth worker from the next community Mimili. She invited us to her house to stay with her partner. With an outlook on more interesting conversations and encounters, we tried to race to Mimili – what seemed like almost impossible on these sandy roads when we left. The road was good, the wind was behind us (for a change), and we made it! Thank you Helen and Kell for a great evening in Mimili.

Road to Mimili

Road to Mimili

Road to Mimili

Road to Mimili

Road to Mimili

Road to Mimili