Outback Trek: The Hebel Hotel

Been driving since sun up
and it’s hotter than hell
I could do with a feed
and a drink or two
Best stop up ahead
at the Hebel Town Hotel

For seven long years
this land gripped by drought
The ‘Long Paddock’
once green and lush
now but dry stubble
and all chewed out

A friendly reminder …
“Don’t forget to fill up.
Both petrol and water.
If you run out of one,
you’ll be needing the other!”
As they say in the local vernacular,
It’s as dry as a dead dingo’s donger!

Hebel is a crossroad town
with but a solitary watering hole
to save the thirsty soul
of the weary & dusty traveller
If you’re not much of a drinker
there’s the Roadkill Cafe
for an espresso or a latte
Seeking road signs for an answer
. . . Do I turn left
towards the rainforest coast
… and water?
Turn right
and it’s serious desert
past the Black Stump
and on to the Never Never
Should I toss a coin
for a fateful answer?
The road ahead
north to the Tropic of Capricorn
is clearly marked ‘Danger’
Perhaps I should stop for a spell
and sleep on it overnight
in a nice soft bed
up ahead at the Hebel Hotel

From the outside
not much to look at
but once inside
surprisingly palatial
Where a hot Blues/Didge band
was pumping out loud
to a frenzied crowd
All grazing and raging
at the Hebel Town Hotel

As I ordered an Ironbar Pilsner
the barman said with a smile
“You’re just in time
it’s Happy Hour!”
He then served my beer
with a slice of lime
and a little blue umbrella
I thanked him
with a bone dry whisper
for you don’t ask questions
when it’s Happy Hour
at the Hebel Town Hotel
Except, “Who do I have to kill
to get a meal around here?”

Each meal seems to come
with much tomato sauce
and a Mr. Orange smiley face
at the Hebel Hotel
Tomorrow for breakfast
I’ll try that Roadkill Cafe
before I hit the crossroads
Decision of direction
finally made … hopefully
and drive away
from this God forsaken
drought stricken town

~ by david Redpath © 2018

(… the journey continues)

PhotoArt:
David Redpath © 2018

Photography:
David & Linda Redpath © 2018

118 thoughts on “Outback Trek: The Hebel Hotel”

    1. It is very serious.
      They are calling it a one
      in a hundred year drought.
      The farmer’s here can usually
      withstand two or three years
      without rain, but seven years
      of drought is breaking point
      for many.

      Like

      1. I found that phrase so amusing
        I felt the need to comment 🙂
        The dholes here are so terrifying
        Hydrate them at your own detriment
        Had to run away from more than one pack
        Thankfully, many natural watering holes for those nasty dholes.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. The dingoes here are polite
        and well behaved.
        They wouldn’t hurt a jelly baby.
        They’ve had some bad press
        in the past … actually they
        are very sneaky.
        Don’t trust them to do any
        babysitting.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Srikanth.
      We do have cattle ranches here
      larger than some countries.
      Complete with outlaws (Bushrangers)
      and cowboys (Drovers).
      Except the bushrangers, like
      Ned Kelly, have all been hung,
      or elected to goverment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s great ! When I’am young I used to read lot of western novels like Louis la mour, Oliver strange and am crazy about western movies and l still have a collection of those movies and Clint Eastwood is my favorite !!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Still in Croc Country, Daniel.
      The cane toads are an introduced pest, so no one
      really cares if a race contestant
      is given a ‘french handicap’!
      It’s the country pub ‘cocktails’
      that make happy hour a must.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I remember those Cane Toads in Korea. They were big enough to take a bicyclist down. I think they are considered a pest everywhere there is more than one. But that happy hour, I think that works.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Waaa haaa haaaa! I have a good visual in my head of that wild ride. When I was over in Saudi and Kuwait, I watch sime camel races. Those poor jockeys don’t have long careers because they keep getting launched into the desert trying to stay on the back of a raging camel. It is fun tho. The betting is all on which jockey is going airborne instead of which camel will win.

        Liked by 2 people

      1. I d love to visit Tasmania but first island,that is also much closer😉as for an Australian Ortensia …..well the original is not easy to replicate…..thanks God someone would say: one is enough🤣
        Have a good day .i just have a swim in the sea.not the ocean but it will do😉

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I like the way you’ve filtered the pictures to go along with your words. I’ve never been to Oz but have traveled across Nevada and Utah and stopped in many last chance places with roadkill cafes! You caught the feel.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. The Cane Toad race will
      outlast the Human Race.
      It’s a Time Warp with warts,
      that can take all night 🌙.
      Those amphibians don’t go straight. That’s not the way
      they roll. First it’s a squirm
      to the left, and then a leap
      to the right.
      Dont bet on the toads.
      Hang on to your cash real tight.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Did it? Will definitely keep praying for more.
        Where we are, we are actually having a very dry year too, but lately we have been getting these dribs and drabs, and I said to my husband, you know, the ground is so hard, if we had a downpour, it would just run off, but the little bits are helping to work the crust a little so when we finally get the proper rain it will hopefully soak in better. It’s giving some much needed hope.
        Just clearing the air a little here, it’s amazing how it affects the psyche.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Sorry to bother you David but I’m just wondering did I dream it or did you post a comment about spicy Mexican breasts and Donald Trump liking them and possibly allowing the Disciples of Santa Muerte into the U.S. so he can eat their breasts in my last night’s blog post that was posted Tuesday August 7th?

    And also did I not reply to your comment?

    The reason why I ask is both comments are now gone and I know I didn’t delete thrm.

    Just wondering what’s happening here.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. The Disciples were just a figment of my imagination but modeled on the actual atrocities committed by the Mexican drug cartels.
        Then I started telling her about how Samael and Lilith are mentioned in both the Bible and the Talmud- that Samael is the Satan mentioned in the Book of Job and how Lilith is mentioned by name in Isaiah in the original Hebrew.
        Then there are numerous Talmud references to both Samael and Lilith.
        Then when I tried to post the comment, it flashed on my smart phone-NSA verification required, FBI verification required, CIA verification required, CSIS verification required.
        CSIS I presume stood for Canadian Security Intelligence Service (Canada’s national security and intelligence agency).
        I found it amusing that the U.S. agencies got verification first over Canada’s when it was a Canadian’s smart phone being examined in Canada.
        I couldn’t get back on my Safari browser again.
        I was able to use What’sApp so I text messaged a friend of mine who’s a former DARPA employee and explained what happened.
        He figured that something I had mentioned in my comment probably stood out so all these agencies took notice.
        But I must have been deemed safe because when I got back home from the restaurant I was in using their wifi, I could use my iPhone browser again.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. That’z a relief, Van Helsing.
        I thought perhaps Google
        was making WordPress,
        Sino-compliant, just like
        Facebook. They don’t want
        any bull in the china shop.
        I thought they may have
        targeted your post as the
        ground zero of bull.
        And me as an innocent bystander, of course?
        I thought the CSIS was the
        Canadian Sisters of Islamic
        State?
        Anyway, Google has asked
        nicely not to use the term
        ‘Yellow Peril’
        ( not very P.C.)

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Here you see them up in the mountains, the little pauses in the road, built on too thin soils to support more than a few large ranches, and maybe also built on too many hopes. It’s interesting how your poem reveals the genuine friendliness small places and small towns presume for strangers. Maybe that’s universal?

    Thanks for the poem.

    Liked by 3 people

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