Home for the night is the Mulga Creek Hotel at Byrock ” out past the kiddies playground darl.” The ground is red dirt and the trees well, they’re Mulga. As we follow a track out to the “Rock Holes” a flock of big furry goats race past us. The Rock is flakey with shallow water filled holes, and channels that we wonder may have been man made in antiquity. There are tiny yellow water lilies floating on the water and a frog croaks.
In the evening we walk up to the pub for dinner and learn that the goats are in fact sheep that the lady publican calls “The Kelly Gang”. She’s a Kelly and the sheep adopted the publicans when they bought the pub. They are a mixture of Damara and Dorpers apparently a good cross and bred for meat. The Damaras don’t require shearing and have long shaggy wool and fat tails. Mrs Kelly goes on to describe how sheep are neutered and how even feral animals will lose their gamey taste when neutered. We’re somewhat overwhelmed by talk of tight green rubber bands but Mrs Kelly is a sheep expert from way back.
The pub, which also acts as a general store and post office, was rebuilt in 1980 after having burnt down and even though modern it has an historical ambience. Especially when they light the fire on a coolish evening. The Irish barman is a gentleman, Mrs Kelly is quite a character and the place will remain in our hearts. We’re so engaged with talk of wethers and the power of rubber bands that I forget to visit the war museum in the dining room. The menfolk of this tiny wee town came home from the First World War with three Military Medals and a Victoria Cross.
Dinner was large and cheap, cheaper even than our powered site.