Wednesday 27th of October 2021

Stranger In A Strange (Halliburton) Land

Having had local councils on my mind since learning how the Byron Bay
Council gave Halliburton a contract because they were afraid of a
lawsuit, I"ve had a coincidental week.

I was just smiling over my front gate to a council inspector while explaining my unregistered dog. As I don't drive, I have no licence. In order to prove who I was
I had to find three pieces of identification. This was in order to receive a fine.

You can appreciate my level of annoyance, having flown to Queensland using an album cover and a 1971 (age six) passport,  played at Edinburgh Air Force Base using a
multi-coloured Land Rover and a pub social club card and getting to Port
Lincoln using letters sent to me from the State Attorney General, the
former Arts Minister and a Liberal MLC.   These actions, admittedly, indicate a possible phobia.

I ascribe to the late science fiction writer (and inventor of the water-bed) Robert Heinlein's theory that when a culture demands you continually prove who
you are, it's time to move somewhere else.

The trouble is, where to go?
I've just spent a few days down at Narrung, on the side of Lake
Alexandrina, near the Murray's Mouth. No telly, no net, no shops, no
dogcatchers...just one of the world's most beautiful shorelines.   Every few hours the soundscape is reluctantly disturbed by a mechanical engine, but that's okay because it reminds
you that the noise that you spend your city-life blotting out is alien to the nature you're now inhabiting.

Down at the barrages which separate the Murray from the sea,
the gates are open so that you can admire the Haliburton solar panel
and pumping equipment. Even KBR seem to have become lackadaisical down
here.
A stranger in a strange land, I attempted to grok the technology (or if
you prefer Arthur C. Clarke, I was the caveman before the monolith) and
failed.

Aside: We have one important piece of technology at the shack
at Narrung. Dad uses the ride-on mower to mow the verges in the town.
The KBR contractors, with no work to do, drive on.

Returning home,  crossing the (bloody bumpy) lake, I looked out on the water
where Cheney's Men plan to build a hundred-kay diameter freshwater
reclamation system, complete with housing estate and marina.

In the same manner an engine noise conflicts here, the mental picture of
such an unnatural construct in the middle of such a naturally pristine
environment seemed wrong. In the truest meaning of the word, it's
"unearthly".

Back on the shores of reality, we drove back to the city on what
is going to become a four-lane highway. Guess who the designers might
be?
Nope, this isn't the Heinlein-esque bolt-hole that it should be- at
least, it won't be in ten years time. 

I doubt there are many left. If one exists, you can expect to see a corporate logo there sometime in the near future