Tag Archives: Megalong Valley

Lucky country and a few pics of a homeless friend.

We hear that a lot – that Australia is ‘the lucky country’. What’s lost is that Donald Horne who wrote the book of that name meant Australia is lucky in that it’s success is more due to good luck than good management. As he said, a first rate country run by second rate people and a recent example of that is the domestic supply of gas. Previous governments sold near all known reserves to Asia, amongst the world’s largest, and at a price so low that it would now be cheaper to buy Australian gas back from Japan than frack for more. New South Wales and Victoria have heaps of gas but the resistance of their rural communities to fracking is such that in the end the federal government had to ask the energy companies to please, please put a little aside for domestic consumption and not export the lot. I wonder how much that will add to local energy bills which are already ridiculously high and when combined with the equally ridiculous cost of housing will result in even more average families heading bills in hand to their local Salvation Army office.

Anyways… thought I’d share a few pictures I took a few years ago when and as some who have been accessing this blog would know, I was homeless and living in a tent in the bush. ‘Harmonica Mike’ was well known to backpackers who camped in the woods. Actually and given the tendency of the younger generation to post all and everything on social media, Michael had become a bit of an international celebrity with many wondering how in a country like Australia a man with a plethora of health issues could be left to live in a tent.

'Harmonica Mike' outside his tent in the Megalong Valley, New South Wales, Australia. Photograph by Paul Nyssen.

I said ‘don’t smile’ – Mike thought that was a crack up.

'Harmonica Mike' outside his tent in the Megalong Valley, New South Wales, Australia. Photograph by Paul Nyssen. 'Harmonica Mike' outside his tent in the Megalong Valley, New South Wales, Australia. Photograph by Paul Nyssen.