Saturday, 8 August 2009

Was I to touch my hat to him: was I his bloomin’ dog?


A Bushman's Song

I’m travellin’ down the Castlereagh, and I’m a station hand,
I’m handy with the ropin’ pole, I’m handy with the brand,
And I can ride a rowdy colt, or swing the axe all day,
But there’s no demand for a station-hand along the Castlereagh.

So it’s shift, boys, shift, for there isn’t the slightest doubt
That we’ve got to make a shift to the stations further out,
With the pack-horse runnin’ after, for he follows like a dog,
We must strike across the country at the old jig-jog.


Andrew Barton (Banjo) Paterson
(First verse and refrain only)

17 comments:

Jacob said...

I want one of those hats! And no, you needn't touch your hat or anyone else's!

Great shot...and love the song!

brattcat said...

Enlarge this one, everyone. It is exquisite. I touch my hat to the photographer, master of images.

Vogon Poet said...

I was going to bed but this image caught my attention. This is something quite familiar, but with little hints from another faraway world. Great shot, hats off to you!
Good night (or good morning) from Tuscany...

Joan Elizabeth said...

I see RM Williams has a photography book out with the title something like "Akubra it's Australian for hat". This shot would go well in that book, it might not be an Akubra but it is certainly an Australian hat.

BlossomFlowerGirl said...

My boys used to wear those hats with their Driza-bones. There's something rather "manly" about them hats.

And quoting Banjo Paterson is so apt - first thing that came to mind was "There was movement at the station for the word had got around..."

Sally said...

Look out for some Paddington history tomorrow - think you might like it.

AB said...

A real Crocodiel Dundee hat! No corks dangling from it?

altadenahiker said...

He looks real tough. Even his hat. Even his ear. Even the squint in his eye.

JM said...

Gorgeous close-up! It's a great shot indeed!

Julie said...

AH: Gives a new slant to "eyes in the back of his head" then ...

Eamon said...

Superb - and I really want that hat!

altadenahiker said...

Squint? The way the skin sits atop his cheekbone.

Julie said...

mmm ... I'm not convinced but open to being ... I thought squinting was something one did with eyes ... scrunch them up to change the focal length and therefore alter the light level ... or OR ... have a quick look ... so yes, the skin atop (like that word) the checkbone becomes ruffled like crows feet ... but THAT is not the squint ... that is the result of the squint. Is that pedantic enough for you, dya think? Your counter thoughts, dear pedant?

altadenahiker said...

You gave me enough visual information to imagine the face, and methinks the skin speaks to a perpetual squint.

I also think a squint is an attitude, like a swagger, and belongs to someone who is always taking the measure of what's around him.

Stephany said...

I'm sure his beloved hat has seen many walkabouts. From the braided band to the moles in front of his ears and the bristle on his chin, this is an excellent photo!

Julie said...

Yes, in Australia the light is so harsh that we have a perpetual squint - and wear sunnies continually. This is often the topic of conversation on our 100 Strangers blog where Peter is currently barging through France and revelling in the softness of the light.

I like the concept of this light>squint> impacting character to the point of watchful awareness. Although I think the majority of Australians are not people watchers in this sense, I certainly am. I love people: interacting and observing others. Taking the measure means more than just watching people though, it is also being aware of situations that might bubble up.

Okay ... I have expanded my appreciation of the squint.

Julie said...

Thank you for your responses to this image, friends. I quite like urban characters like this: essentially Australian even though they do not live in the bush.

As for Crocodile Dundee: he was an imagination of an Australian that Americans might find attractive. He was not genuine. We don't bother with corks to ward off the flies: we just give the great Australian wave - and swear a lot!