Saturday, October 03, 2009

Round the New England blogging traps 11 - Tablelands and coast

Congratulations to Bronwyn Parry on signing a contract for two new books. Well deserved. I complained in A fit of depression about my own slow progress in writing. Bronwyn has the good fortune now to work full time as a writer. That remains my dream.

While not a New England blogger, Kanani Fong had an interesting post on writing, Writing The Path.

With partner Gordon of lookANDsee fame, Bronwyn recorded a recent excursion20090920HaydensTrack into the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park in Top Creek & Macleay River trip.

For those who do not know the Park, it is one of those dotting the New England Tableland's eastern escarpment.

It appears that once Bronwyn has finished the current Dungirri series - this is set in New England's Western Plains - her new book is likely to feature this country.

After a long posting delay, Peter Firminger's Wollombi Valley has posted again with A Fair Go for the Hunter Community Coalition.  The post begins:

A Fair Go for the Hunter Community Coalition consists of community groups whose objective is to halt the wave of bad planning by this NSW Government in order to get the best results for the Hunter community.

The new group will be launched on 8 October 2009 at the Newcastle Leagues Club. You can find the details in the post. I wish the new group well.

We have far too few locality blogs. I have argued for a long time that blogging is one way for individual areas to promote themselves. For that reason I was very glad to see a new post from Peter.

Sticking to locality or area blogs, North Coast Voices continues its mix of local and political. I tend to turn off the political commentary, I get enough of that anyway. However, to those of a different political persuasion from NCV, the blog is really worth while reading for its local content. K Roo's post, Calf confusion or why the little bull loves fence posts, is really very funny. I won't give the story away. just read it.

On the purely political, Clarence Girl's post Shame Rudd Shame: government gets a fail on pension increase was just so wrong on public policy grounds that it deserves a full reply. I know where she is coming from, I understand her motivations, but while I am in complete sympathy I think that we need to look objectively at the issues raised by the decision she refers to.

This post is a blog review: I will respond in another post that focuses just on the public policy issues.

Staying with NCV and indeed with Clarence Girl, Lowdown on the Joint Regional Planning Committee for the NSW North Coast deals with a very important issue, the Sydney Government's approach to planning and to the approval of developments. Two joint planning committees affect New England; one covers the Hunter, a second the rest of the North.

I am not close enough to the politics and public policy issues on this one to have a view beyond the common suspicion that pretty much everybody has about just about anything coming out of Macquarie Street at the present time. It's something that I really need to look at because CG, rightly, highlights its importance.

Staying on the North Coast, LYNNE SANDERS-BRAITHWAITE turns sixty this month and is planning a public party for Friday night 16 October at the South Grafton Emporium. Lynne wrote:

Call  02 6643 3524 to book a table if you would like to join us. Izzy and friends will provide the music , Peter Freeman the food and Annie Dodd, the Lady of the Emporium, has created a community atmosphere that is hard to resist. In fact – Don’t Resist it.

Happy birthday Lynne. I would love to go to actually meet you both; after this time, I feel that I know you both quite well! MEREKI, IZZY and ROBYN

Lynne's post MONDAY IN SEPTEMBER is all about Festivals. This photo shows Izzi with Mereki and Robyn.  Robyn owns Shellbound, one of the four indigenous businesses involved in this year's Wide River's Festival.

Lynne notes that Robin Bryant's JTD Merchandise is providing an umbrella for the four businesses involved. Looking at Robin's web site, I see that 5% of all merchandise sold goes to support the Muurrbay Aboriginal Language and Culture Co-Operative

As it happens, I have been meaning for a while to write a little bit about Muurrbray as part of the story of the Aboriginal Language Revival Movement in New England.

The Clarence River marks the dividing line between two very large Aboriginal language groups.

To the north, the Bundjalung language with its various dialects was spoken in a huge sweep of territory north along the coast into what is now Southern Queensland and west onto the Tablelands. To the south, Gumbaynggirr was spoken down to and including the Nambucca Valley. It, too, extended onto the Tablelands essentially following the headwaters of the Nymboida. Like Bundjalung, Gumbaynggir had a number of dialects, including Baanbay on the Tablelands around Guyra.

Yaygirr, the language spoken at the mouth of the Clarence, was a Gumbaynggirric language, but sufficiently different to be classified as a language in its own right.               

    The Language Revival Movement began in the 1980s as a way of recovering languages that had either died or were in danger of extinction. Muurrbay played a key role on the coast, while there was a similar movement in the west concerned with the revival of Kamilaroi.

I really got side-tracked on this post digging around for supporting material. There are so many other things that I meant to write about, but these will have to wait until my next meander around the New England blogging traps.

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