Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Today Tambaroora…! Tomorrow Tweet-hearts?? The WORLD!!!

Swelling the ranks of the Revelation Generation

Bathurst Regional Art Gallery recently sent invitations for expressions of interest in their new Online Marketing for Artists’ Course. 

The brains and bustle behind this course is, Education and Public Programs Officer, Emma Hill. Emma is a qualified Teacher and an Artist. She believes “On-line Marketing for Artists” (OM4A is her snazzy acronym) to be, an especially, powerful tool for regional Artists. We’re on the rise apparently.

Emma is a powerhouse. She has designed this course and delivers it with aplomb. She leaps and springs around, not so much jumping out of her skin, but jumping around within it. She is a sculptor and radiates strength. She wore skin-tight red jeans topped with a tight black-silver-striped spangly number! Emma looks like a circus acrobat or a cat-burglar. She also has the best right eye-brow I’ve seen in 30 years! 

Emma cheerfully invites you to push your scepticism and fears aside, and then floods you with information. I suspect she enjoyed letting us have it. Her course notes are a wonderful resource. She also gifts us a downloadable-show-bag of very useful tools. But it’s Emma who is the Ring Master driving us through it.

The first session was crammed with options, marketing, platforms, tools, etiquette, short-cuts and dangers. To name a few. This was Emma’s plan. Push us through, give us the tools, and then hit us with the homework. Emma warns us she will accept no excuses for non-completed assignments! Next session we will collate all of our “homework” and launch a platform.

The second week and the set-up is different. Emma asks us to share our individual experiences and allows those, not in the hot-seat, to disappear behind their screens and play.

Emma listens to us carefully and answers our questions. For the most part, she’s a solo listener.  The rest of are deeply submerged in our on-line worlds. We only surface when a word from above, like a pelagic morsel, tempts us to rise. We stay, only as long as needed, before diving back down, into the depths, with our useful snippets. 

This is us finding our way into our on-line personae. 

At one stage, after nearly 3 hours of patient listening, Emma apologises for interrupting!!!! Emma has manners!  The rest of us shrieked, groaned and carried on cross conversations. There were even ejaculations of triumph!!  “I’ve got my first like!!!!!!!”. Emma assures us that even an old hand, like herself, still gets excited. 

"Likes" can create thorny issues.

“Likes” are valuable currency. They generate esteem as well as business.  Once you reach 30 you gain insight! You need not spend years to gain enlightenment!

There are ethical questions of course. Does one “Like” a fellow artist’s site if one doesn't like their work?  Emma seems to think that, especially in the early stages, we’re all there to help each other. Like  some mad vicarious Vivisectionist, Emma encourages us to create a network, and experiment on each other.

To do this, you have to share.

This is where Emma can’t help. Sharing requires judgement. As artists, how discriminating we are is critical to our work, and our reputation. Emma encourages us to look at what’s out there, aim high and get it together!

Studio 15.
Ruth Stone @Studio15 is a star. She has launched a Facebook business page during the week! Ruth has done a lot of work. The completion of her studio in Millthorpe, after an extended period of no studio, is a wonderful launch platform.

Ruth  has thought about the emotional issues involved in asking to be liked. It puts one in a vulnerable situation. Emma makes a clear distinction between personal and business.  She claims she never mixes but, vixen that she is, also has mischievously told me, earlier, that she doesn’t play hard to get!

Zenio Lapka wows us all by pulling out a second computer and playing away at the two of them like Phantom of the Opera playing on his organ. By the time we get around to this digital maestro, we’ve been at it for close to two hours. People are falling by the wayside! Zenio has put the two hours to good use. His launch has huge wow factor. Zenio is a Zenious. I felt positively primitive.   

Emma commits her only blasphemy in the course when she asserts the image’s
absolute superiority over the word. Can there be any surer way to lose control of your “image”, than to begin commenting, madly, after three martinis??  Emma agrees it’s wise to stay away from the keyboard when shickered!

I’m not a visual artist. I’m a writer in search of a joke. No joke then, when it's me who provides a text-book example of the word's power. Facebook is a master of connectivity. You just need the name. That's your key to the visual portal. “What’s your page called??” people ask, their fingers busy in a flurry of mutual liking.  

The Tambaroora Times” I answer. 

Silence.  Ruth le Cheminant looks at me with disbelief! I realise I’ve made a terrible mistake. Nobody has ever heard of Tambaroora! Even worse... no one knows how to spell it. Ruth's eyes glaze over when I try to. She's committed though. She leaps up, grabs pen and paper and scribbles it down. 

"The Tambaroora Tablets" by my husband, Michael Ramsden,
provided inspiration for my bad-comedy-tabloid inspired blog
The Tambaroora Times. 

I always thought living in a ghost-town gave me cachet. Wrong. The unspellable name is the kiss of death. Louise @ Bant Street Pottery tells us  she always teaches children to break down a difficult, or unknown, word and articulate it in it’s component parts. This is great  advice.

"The-Tam-ba-roor-a-Times" I enunciate. But no-one's listening. They've all moved on.  Time is precious.  My motto “Today? Tambaroora! Tomorrow? The World!!!! Doesn’t seem so convincing. My mad mwhah, hah, hah, hah laughter trails off. "It’s facebook” Ruth tells me. “You don’t always receive your likes”. Right. Even though Natasha Daniloff  likes me I still feel like the smelly kid in the class.

Hill End certainly looks posh in this portrait by Genevieve Carroll
Ruth Stone rescues me from despair when I explain that Tambaroora is due North of Hill End. Oh Hill End!!!” she says. Clearly we are now talking about a horse of a different colour. “Hill End’s posh!” 
I may have to lower my standards and admit Tambaroora’s, twisted-sister-connection to her more famous Siamese-twin; HILL END. Ethical dilemmas are everywhere. 

Unfortunate things can happen on the Internet. Emma speaks about some of these dangers. I hear the word “Stalker” at one point. The Internet is certainly a powerful tool to uncover the details of a life and it pays to keep current with the ever evolving world of malware and how to protect against it. The more famous you become, the harder it is to hide if someone takes it into their head to get to know you. I don’t have to worry about that out here. No-one’s ever heard of Tambaroora. Nor looks like they want to! 

I end the day, woefully unenlightened, with only one like. Well Two. One's my own.  

I wanted there to be a third lesson so I could take along an apple and wiggle my way into the position of teacher’s pet.

Then I’d realised that’s exactly what I’d been doing!

Emma redefines taking an Apple for the Teacher.

Thanks Emma and BRAG and all other who helped this project come to fruition. My apologies to my colleagues who, due to space restrictions, went unmentioned. They have big stories to tell. 

They are 
Nicola Mason
Harrie Fasher
Jennifer Gabbay
Emily Laszuck
Adrian Symes

"The Tambaroora Tablets" image is used here with thanks to Mark and Angela-Scmitt-Glaser of  GROUP.IE Gesellschaft für Identity Engineering mbH.
For the beautiful vintage images I thank Vintage Printable at Swivelchair Media – Beta
The opening image is Emma's and BRAG'S. Many thanks for permission to reproduce. 
Many thanks to Ruth Stone, Zenio Lapka and Genevieve Carroll for permission to reproduce their images. 
The image of the rock that forms the banner image of  The Tambaroora Times was taken by my husband, Michael Ramsden. His on-line presence, thanks to this course, is currently in-development. 

Muses and "like-magnets" Archy and Wynny @studio15. 
These  stars topped Ruth Stone's "like-chart".
Note to self.... 
Get to poultry shop. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Local Lad and Lass, Brad Warry and Shiralee Seaman are recreating a journey from Hill End's heyday.


This baby is from Coffin Bay South Australia. Wouldn't she go down a treat??
This is a Pacific Oyster but Pure Coffin Bay Oysters also breed, the Angasi. This native oyster was eaten to near-extinction on the Gold-fields. Maybe even by Brad's ancestors.
It is now making a comeback!
Then, of course, the unopened oysters were packed into hessian bags and hauled up the Bridle Track by horse or bullock. 

This team is hauling half a house!!!! They'd get a few sacks of Oysters up the old Bridle Track in no time at all!
Bullock team transportring part of a house in the Gympie District, 1928
John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland Neg. 34800

But Brad and Shiralee are modern folk and this is their steed of choice. 

Note refrigeration unit!

Brad is a trained chef with extensive experience in large hotel kitchens. He has worked as Head Chef and supports this kitchen experience with considerable bar management expertise. A stint as a Licensee rounds off his CV.

It's impossible to rise, and operate, at this level of responsibility without knowledge of food handling and hygiene becoming ingrained. Very important with seafood. 

Shiralee is busy doing a certificate 2 in Business studies. She is grappling with the intricacies of spread-sheets, projections, and book-keeping as well as becoming acquainted with the complex joys of BAS and GST. 

The plan is simple. Drive to Sydney on Friday and collect fresh Oysters and prawns. Sell aforementioned Oysters and prawns on Saturday morning on The Avenue! 


Winter is the best time for this esteemed mollusc. How good would the plump, creamy taste of a freshly shucked oyster be? 

The local lemon trees are coming on...!

Betty's lemons are legendary. What a combination! 
God! Imagine letting Betty loose in an Oyster Bar!
She'd cut a rug!

This is worth travelling for!

10 am Saturday!
The Veggie Shack@The Avenue.
Shiralee has created a schedule. For all details, including placing orders, please contact her at 
Any other haulage work?
Ring Brad of Warry's Transport & Haulage  0421 258156

This is a budding operation. It will evolve as Brad and Shiralee find their way around the markets and refine their operation. 

It's going to be a delicious part of town. Let's keep it beautiful.

The Editor would like to thank Linda Hank from Pure Coffin Bay Oysters for permission to use the photograph of one of their oysters. The photo in question, was taken by John White photos. Thanks John.
The Editor would also like to thank Margaret Warren from the Library of Queensland for help with copyright on the Bullock Team photo. 
All other photos and text KMR

Wednesday, March 27, 2013



This isn't a garden!
It's a containment yard for a load of revved-up extras in a DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS remake.


"Prepare the Napalm...

...We're going in..."

These Babies look lethal!


This is an old family kitchen garden that fell into disuse. It had sustained the Thompson family for generations. 

Hill End is not an easy place for a gardener.  The soil is heavy clay. It freezes in the  winter and bakes in the summer. It initially repels water, then becomes so waterlogged, I doubt our local potters could work it. 

It is rich soil however and, over many years, this particular patch has had an enormous amount of work done to it. Many things thrive here and the produce is beyond good.


Hill End has a short growing season. Late or early frosts decimate gardens overnight. The summers are drought afflicted or storm prone. 
If the drought don't get you; the hailstones will.

This garden was site of "The Watermelon Massacre". 

Huge, end-of-summer watermelons bursting with chilled sweetness and and crunch, died a terrible death in a sudden violent hailstorm. No-one was spared. 

It's sadness is beyond my ability to convey. 

These are pumpkins I know...

The bones in this garden are excellent. Everything stands to attention. Nothing that isn't meant to, droops or falls over. It's a very virile place. Plants clamber upward, with such vigour, only Thommo's hand-milled "Worthy of Dracula Stakes" can take the load.

This garden pumps with Herculean force. 
Thommo worked this garden with his Dad, Herbie, and his grandfather, Charlie.
Hill End has, until even recently, been a remote place. Self-sufficiency was an essential way of life. Everyone had a kitchen garden and the area abounds in fruit trees.
In a village of competitive gardeners, Thommo, is renowned.

Bec brings an ambition and passionate energy to this project. She has pushed it to another level. It's in her blood I think. She has a background in perma-culture. This knowledge augments the years of natural organic-practice inherent in this garden. It is organic in principle and would, more than likely, comply with certification. But, at this stage, that's not an issue.

There can no better way to spend time than to sit under the shaded branches of the fruit and nut trees and look out, across the dazzling light, and watch the vegetables just getting the job done. This garden grows in front of your eyes. By day or night it's a wonderful thing to do. 

Enter at your peril!

Bec is well assisted by Thommo is realising their ambitions. 
Thommo can move the Earth. 

The Thompson family are miners and earth movers by nature. They are famous in the area for their mechanical ingenuity. They have every handy-dandy piece of earth-moving equipment you would ever want to see. 

The men in this family are also famous for their tools. 
...And their ability to wield them...

Bec has kindly agreed to share a photograph of Thommo's...!



Isn't it beautiful?
Bec even offered to let us see Dave's tool in action!! Very generous girl!

Bec and Thommo have, in this first year of their marriage, breathed new life back into this garden. You only have to look at it to know that the Breath is Good!
It is a triumph of ambition and execution. 
A true marriage. 
A celebration of its long history.

And it's about to get better...!

Bec and Thommo are about to move their Operation into The Avenue. They're going to clean out Zeus's shelter and make it funky!
It doesn't get any more local than this!

The Old Stable...
The garden can be no more than 30 metres away. It will form a beautiful backdrop. 
It is going to be gorgeous. Very special.
 If the sheep can stay, all the better.

Might be a lamb on the way...!
There is no doubt this area is fast becoming the posh, and happening, end of town.
Bill and Genevieve Moseley, of Hill End Press fame, are directly opposite!
Steve and Sue Rattray, great supporters of local produce through their BB and Cafe  Hosie's  are planting a vineyard next door. 
Shira-lee Seamen is free-ranging chickens not too far away. 

Hen's of Hill End! 


This year's essential egg-cesory. A reusable egg-carrier!... Painted eggs beautifully created and generously shared by Suela. Thanks to Suela who will also have a stall at the Hall Markets on Saturday and Sunday. Come along!
Egg carrier and great skull bandana from Northeys!
Could Maggie be right? Is this the Paris End of town?

The Grand Opening is Easter Saturday.
A time of powerful Anniversaries.  
 It promises to be a feast for all the senses. 
N.B The house yard and the garden will not be open.

Be there. Around 10am.

Come and enjoy our Avenue!
Drive Safely.
With thanks to all the people who have worked tirelessly to rejuvenate it.


By the time I took leave of Bec and Thommo's generous hospitality the sun had shifted and the garden looked like this...

There are many memories and many ghosts in this garden.... 
Among them are, the infamous Wombi and the beautiful Zeus...
Some say there is no mystery to Wombi's disappearance but, on a night like this, I don't believe it.

Other Easter News

Lino Alvarez is holding conducting a POTTERY DEMONSTRATION at 2pm on Easter Saturday. Word is he will be throwing a BIG pot AND firing up a raku kiln.  

At La Paloma 2pm.

Kim Deacon is giving two concerts at the Sacred Heart Church on Easter Sunday (12pm and 3pm). 

The Presbyterian Church will be holding a Sunday evening service. 6pm. The candelabras will be lit! 

The Hall will be hosting Markets. Saturday and Sunday. 

Ted Abbot says there will be NO gold panning tours unless it rains.!!!! 

NORTHEYS will be open! 

HOSIES will be open too. They are serving evening meals but are ALREADY BOOKED OUT. 

THE GENERAL STORE will be open (in addition to their normal hours)  for DINNER on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night.


  • Many thanks to Bec and Thommo for allowing me into their garden. 


What we found at the bottom of Bec and Thommo's garden...


Celebrated Spud loves nothing more than  forking over his patch!

Mr Potato Head kindly agreed to answer a few quick questions when I stumbled upon him and broke his cover down the bottom of Bec and Thommo's garden. 

The first question I had to ask was...?

Mr Potato Head, what are you doing here?????

I was born here. It's true. I'm a local. Don't look so gob-smacked. This place is famous for its potatoes. I go back a long way in this country.  I'm proud to call Hill End, no matter how humble, home. All the family are here. I like to come back, leave the mansions and the caviar behind at just  be... one of the spuds. 

You look purpose built to play footy. Did you ever try-out? You look like you'd be a great five-eight.

Wally Lewis thought exactly that. I love the game. Just love it. Fact is, I kept getting mistaken for the ball! Got the chip kicked out of me. Wally tried to steer me into coaching. Thought it would be a great use of my charisma and leadership skills. I did have ambitions but then...well... mega-stardom came my way and the rest is, as they say, History.

What about Music? Favourite singer?

Barry White. Without a doubt. Me and Barry...? When we went out together...? I tell ya. I love nothing more that cruising around in the limmo with the Bostons cranked to the max! "I'm never going to give you up". The Chicky-chips can't resist it. 

Come to Tattie baby!

You eat Chips!!!!!

That's a bit personal isn't it? 

Sorry we weren't on the same page.  Talking of food... Your favourite? 

Macaroni Cheese. When the world turns into a cold hard place... I turn to my casserole dish! We have a pottery here in Town. La Paloma! I get all my cookware there. 

What about Fashion?

Linda Jackson. What that woman can't do to fabric isn't worth doing. Linda and I go way back. She lives in the area now you know? I met Chanel once. Oh, she was a tight faced little vixen but could she dress! 

Do you like Cinema?

Love it! Just love it! You know, I mix with a lot a stars, and out all of them..? You gotto love Tarantino! You might think a guy like me, with my fabulous life, would be free of regrets but I have one. Quentin offered me the part of Vincent Vega. I turned it down!!
John Travalota's got me to thank for where he is now! Hi John! I'll be in LA soon. 

Favourite Fictional Character
Noddy! I love a red car. 

Top Gardening Tip...
Get out there and just do it! 
Mulch, mulch and more mulch...

Gardening of course. Fly-fishing. Dancing. I love to cut a rug. I'm an expert Flamenco dancer you know? I'm thinking of opening a Tapas bar in town. This village needs some class. I'm thinking of calling it "PATATAS TAPAS". That's an anagram you know. 
Big dance-floor. Olé!
Come inside, I'll show you my scrapbooks....

Mr Potato Head can truly claim to be a man of humble beginnings.

What happened inside this door?

To be continued....


All copyright with Karin Mainwaring 

Thursday, February 28, 2013


The (once-was) Sacred-Heart Catholic Church is getting 
this weekend!!!

Is this where the Free Lunch is being held???


is being held this weekend

Saturday and Sunday 

2nd and 3rd March 2013 


There will be lots to do... 
There will be cleaning and painting. It could be a chance to have some fun, share and learn some skills, as well as contribute to what will, hopefully, become a beautiful community space...

I heard Suela's going to make Moussaka and Kim's doing Lasagne?
Genevieve's doing the biscuits apparently...! Have you seen her blog? It's fabulous!
What time, anybody know????

The Working Bee is scheduled to commence around 10.30 am on Saturday and 10am on Sunday.


The later start on Saturday is to allow people to attend Yoga at 8.30 am and the Farmer's Market AFTER 10am.  

Is this the kitchen? 
Where's the bar? 
I heard the Advocate and the Guardian are coming...
Really? Let's get around the front then, this isn't my best side

Is this the view we'll be looking over as we tuck into these plates of steaming nosh?
It's much prettier than that. This photographer's lousy.


A meeting is being held in the Hall this Thursday, 

28th February 2013 


 to discuss ways to realise this wondrous possibility. 

What a great place for a wedding. Or a wake! And everything in between. 


it's over to the SCOOL

for a community BBQ!!!!!

All Welcome. 

Be there or be square!

Oh, by the way, I believe some kind of lunch could/might be provided over the weekend.
So I hear. 

Oh and yes... very important,
The Church is a National Parks managed building. 

Apologies for the photos. I'll happily exchange for better and give credit. 
Will also fulfil any copyright requirements for NPWS. Send me a Lyre Bird! 

Coming soon... 

  • Yoga  news...
  • Gardeners of Hill End-Tambaroora 
    • First cab off the rank... The Vegetable Growers.