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Newsletter for Offshore Residents of Pittwater, Australia Volume 7, Issue 90; August 2005
During a recent trip to Central Australia I was amazed at how far technology has progressed for our country neighbours. VERY high speed internet, calls across Australia for the price of a local call, and all due to political intervention at the highest level. What does this tell me? It tells me that we have to continually pursue our politicians to give us a fair go. We must be vigilant and continually press for equal access to technological improvements. We may live near Sydney but sometimes I feel we are disadvantaged by being too close to a metropolis.
And please don't miss one of THE nights of the year, Saturday 13th August at 8pm in the Scotland Island Community Hall - see the item about island history below!
In this Issue:
For many years before the rugged headland and the beautiful shore were known to the first tourists, Barrenjoey, as the whole area was called, was silent, apparently uninhabited except for a few stray cattle and goats.. These grazed on the cleared green hills where, in Pittwater's farming days, wheat and potatoes had been grown for the ever-increasing population of Sydney. Many a settler, short of milk, would lasso a goat and take it home in a boat to supply emergency milk.
A custom house and a schoolhouse once stood on the inner beach near the headland and a customs officer lived there for some years. The school was needed for the children of settlers and farmers, who attended from Careel Bay or crossed the water to the school. The custom house was established because ships had been known to enter the heads and discharge contraband without paying duty. When one large vessel, the Fair Barbarian, did so, and landed a large undeclared cargo, the authorities decided to station an officer at the heads. It is more than likely , however, that contraband continued to be landed in Broken Bay despite this arrangement. A man living in the shadow of Barrenjoey could not possibly monitor every ship that entered by day and by night.
Recognition of this fact may have prompted one customs officer, a Mr. Ross, to make and maintain the reproduction of a soldier keeping perpetual lookout and always on guard. He (or it) stood erect and on guard in front of a cave not far from the lighthouse. With white trousers, scarlet coat, and a tall helmet made of durable tin with a magnificent plume. he stood, sword in hand and scabbard at his side, a counterfeit figure of majestic authority. Since he was more than eight feet (or 244cm) tall, he was easily seen from the deck of passing ships and more than one crew, attempting to secretly slip by, believed that he was watching their manoeuvres and preparing to report them. It was said that one sympathetic captain interpreted the drawn sword as a signal of distress and entered the bay to offer assistance., The ruse was then somewhat discredited and Mr. Ross found that his well intentioned effort was not exactly approved either by the authorities or the maritime traders.
Undaunted, however, he continued to paint his soldier and keep him in repair and the always imposing sentinel stood solidly at his post until he was brought down by the most minute of enemies. An assault by a platoon of white ants devoured his imposingly sturdy legs and he fell, mortally wounded. In a simple ceremony, his cremation followed, survived only by his tin hat.
(Next month): Something fishy with the Chinese.
Emergency Water Line
An event organised by 'IslandThinking
and SIRA unite to present
A local club is pleased to be able to provide a small number of permanent berths for 'commuter' type boats at their clubhouse in Pittwater.
To protect yourself and to keep your computer safe, always keep your machine updated with the latest anti-virus and anti-spam software. And don't do business with a Web site that isn't secure.
Always look for signs that a site is protected and encrypted with a secure SSL certificate. Any time you're asked to give personal information on a Web page, the Web address should begin with "https:" & the "s" stands for "secure" and is your key to knowing your information is protected.
New General Manager
Scotland Island Art
Local Real Estate Agents:
Archived Newsletters A complete set of past electronic newsletters since May 2000 can be found and read at http://www.scotlandisland.org.au/newsletters/archive.html or by clicking here or by visiting the Mona Vale Library. The Scotland Island website is at www.scotlandisland.org.au
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The views expressed in this newsletter are not necessarily the views of the Scotland Island Residents Association (SIRA), or any of the associated Pittwater Offshore Resident's Committees
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