For about six months we worked at a cafe in the mining town of Port Hedland on the West coast, south of Broome.
That’s the town. There was a constant coat of the rusty coloured iron ore dust on everything.
There we are on the right in the nice shady spot. We had the best spot in the lot.
As so many people came into Port Hedland to work in high paying jobs in the mine, there was a huge need for transient workers to fill in the hospitality and service sector roles. There was a large backpacker community and this is what a typical Sunday afternoon would look like. Anyone who has ever lived out of a vehicle knows there is always something that will need to dry.
This was where an abandoned cat lived that I called ‘ Roxy Kitty.’ Homeless and feral cats are a huge problem in Australia because they eat the native birds who otherwise would not have them as predators. Although I do not usually endorse feeding animals, I feed Roxy Kitty because secretly I hoped his owners would return and then at least there was one less hungry cat that might otherwise eat a bird. Roxy Kitty usually only liked milk and wet cat food and would sometimes pick at dry cat food. Lots of different people seemed to look after Roxy Kitty. However at the cafe this wonderfully friendly and definitely homeless black cat started showing up. Then she showed up with four kittens. We did give them water to drink as they were such a disgusting pile of neglect. There was just no one to give the cats to and eventually I had to go and get a cage and call the Rangers to come and get them. It was only going to be five more reproductive feral cats scrounging around for a terrible existence of suffering. So while I’m talking about this, please follow Bob Barkers advice and have your pets spayed and neutered. I cried all night long when I was catching those kittens as I knew they would be put down and it was my hands that put them into a cage.
Working at the cafe we got to learn so many new skills and meet so many amazing people.
No, Chris did not kill the pig, he just cooked it. This was for a big catering event.
The same event flew in this living statue from Perth. As people’s alcohol intake increased so did their amazement with the living statue. I talked to her afterwards and she was a very nice young lady going to university. She almost didn’t apply for the job because it was in the ‘adults’ section of the newspaper. She called anyway to check it out and sure enough it was legit and she’s been a living statue all over Australia helping to pay for university.
We made many great friends during our time in Port which is another bonus of long term travel. Bonds happen so quickly when sharing time together as transient workers. No one has a particular lot of belongings with them yet everyone (we interacted with) was willing to share. There is something so sincere about opening yourself up to others and the rewards of long lasting warm friendships linger deeply in my bones.