Heading way out west

THE only thing betterthan a visit out west, Parade reckons,is a visit out west to somewhere you’venever been before.

That was what Parade did last weekend when he spent a couple of days beside the lazy Lachlan River in the small agricultural community of Hillston.

Given the summer NSW has experienced, Parade was prepared for a weekend of face-melting temperatures, but Hillston instead turned on two days of very mild weather –perfect for wandering along the main street looking at the plaques and grand buildings and reading the historical information signs.

Parade learnt that Hillston was going to be called Redbank, but NSW already had one of those, so it was instead named after its first publican (a Mr Hill). It celebrated 150 years in 2013and it has a section of town in the north where the streets are named after poets (Keats, Shelley, Byron, Milton, Burns) –which made Parade think of Oberon being named after the Shakespearecharacter.

Parade’s visit also reinforced to him, once again, that in every town in Australia (no matter how remote, blazing hot or inaccessible) you will find people whose pride in their home is palpable.

In the one conversation on the weekend, aHillston local told Parade that the town endures temperatures in the late 40s in summer (and having seen the flat, exposed terrain, Parade wouldn’t doubt it)and that she absolutely, positivelywouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

The days of the old schoolyardANNIVERSARY celebrations have lured quite a few people back to Bathurst.

Over the weekend, MacKillop College is celebrating its 50th birthday with a number of events.

On Friday night, a group of around 25 former students from the 1982 Year 10 class and the 1984 graduating class met up at the Kings Hotel.

A number of women were still living in Bathurst, but there were quite a few who made the journey from quite a considerable distance to be part of the fun.

It’s good to see that school friends still like to reconnect so many years after their graduation.

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