From Barbados to the Bush

Host: Myroodah Station
Written by Pam Daniell – Manager, Myroodah.

I come from a place so small it can fit into Myroodah 9.30+ times. I’m not talking about my hometown or even my entire parish. I’m referring to my country in its entirety, so imagine my endless fascination with all the space I have to explore!

4.1Getting my climbing fix, courtesy of an old Boab Tree near the cattle yards.

I came to Myroodah because as is stipulated by the Australian government, I am required to complete three months’ regional work in order to obtain my 2nd year visa. I could not have been happier to comply, having stumbled upon Pam’s advertisement looking to fill a position on a rural cattle station. Not only am I fortunate enough to share time with her two beautiful sons (and my beloved ‘Scruffy’ the dog), I’m also happily all-rounder for the property.

4.2Good morning, World, it’s a brand new day!

Every morning I wake up and cannot wait to get out my door for my first glimpse of what the day holds. I share a cuppa and have a yarn with the station cook as I watch the sun come up on another beautiful day in the bush. Shortly after that I head off to what is usually my first task of the day: feeding my 20 poddy calves! They all possess very distinctive personalities and I’m pleased to say I know them all by name. ‘Audrey Hepburn’ is a robust redhead with blue eyes and freckles on her nose, so named because she’s the prettiest! ‘Dread Pirate Roberts’ was the last poddy to join the gang. He’s quite skittish, very tiny, and has eyes like the sea after a storm. ‘Newton,’ who has beautiful, big dark eyes and looks like he’s part caribou, arrived extremely dehydrated and suffering from pneumonia. Now fully-recovered, his favourite pastime is sleeping in the bathtub-turned-pellet feeder. It’s hard to beat the love and licks I receive from them each morning and evening. They think I’m Mum and I’m happy to oblige. The only cows I have ever known are rather emaciated-looking and they graze on, what I deem to be, a sorry excuse for grass at the side of the road. I am pleased to report that Myroodah cows are plump and happy.

4.3‘Stripe’ hams it up for the camera whilst I both give and receive love!

Once having fed my poddies, I head over to greet my other kids, Sam and Will. My time with them is always spent laughing. Will is his own little station manager with his own bore run and various jobs all around the (house) yard. At the ripe old age of four, his work is never done! He delegates jobs and Sam and I race off to complete them and report back; the windmill at ‘Waterfords’ often needs tending to and the ‘tanks’ further down the fence line must be checked regularly. He knows a lot, old Will, and is happy to teach anyone who’ll listen. Sam, at just two, has a somewhat limited vocabulary compared to his older brother but he has a smile that would melt even Stalin’s frozen heart. He is very much a parrot at the moment, repeating everything he hears, which never fails to bring the laughs. He idolises his big brother and despite the obligatory small rows that crop up between siblings, they are the epitome of best mates.

4.4Smoko with Sam. A bit like Joey from ‘Friends,’ Samo doesn’t share food! And Will happily plays make-believe with some (safe) retired machinery. 

A lot can be learned here for anyone keen, and Chris and Pam are always glad to share their knowledge and expertise. I believe they are the heart and soul of the station and whether it’s Pam tirelessly digging holes, cutting turf, and planting copious amounts of grass, or Chris halting yard work for two days so that we can all take a course on how to better work together towards low-stress stockhandling (which I am all for), it is clear they are devoted to making Myroodah a first-rate place to be. The crew strive to perform at a level befitting their unwavering commitment to not only us, but to all things Myroodah and relating to the cattle industry.

It continues to be a pleasure working with and getting to know the Indigenous blokes on the property. I feel I can boast a truly unique experience living and working on a station owned by the Indigenous Land Corporation where the majority of employees are, I’m pleased to say, Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander. These lads have predominantly come from tough upbringings which are not easily left behind, and it is wonderful to see their potential not being squandered. They have welcomed me warmly into the pack and I do not take for granted the importance of their friendship. The hairstyles I will gladly forget but the love and laughter I’ll take with me always.

4.5My very 1st goanna roast! The Fitzroy River made for an excellent backdrop and a lot of laughs were shared.

For a little girl from a little island, Myroodah is a dream come true. We are our own little family here on the station and I’m getting to experience things most people only dream of. No task is too mundane when you’re surrounded by the beauty that is the Kimberley bush: the silhouette of a colossal Boab against the orange-pink glow of the setting sun, that happy wag of the tail as I approach ‘Stripe,’ my favourite poddy calf, a kangaroo and it’s joey hopping merrily along the airstrip, and the collective laughter of the blokes on an evening after a long day down the yards. It’s true what they say: there are some things money can’t buy. For a magical experience, look no further than Myroodah.

4.6The sun sets on another productive day down the yards.