Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Alice Springs; Miles From Everywhere

If you put an "X" on a map of Australia, Alice Springs would be where the lines cross. Think Kansas in the middle of the USA without the green. It is described as "arid." It is so dry they hold the annual "Henley-On-Todd Regatta" each August where boats, made by participants, are carried down the River Todd to the finish line by their crews. If there is water in the river, the race must be cancelled. It rarely is.

Alice is home to the Royal Flying Doctor Service that uses it's fleet of 63 planes to offer medical service to remote areas of the Australia's "outback" which covers 7 million square kilometers of the country.
To facilitate communication between doctors and small bush communities two way radios were installed. The radios gave rise to the Alice Springs School of the Air which allowed young people to attend school over the radio and through the mail. Now over 140 students, grades k-9, utilize the internet to communicate with classmates and teachers in Alice.

Other Observations

Christmas In Springtime: It's 97 degrees and yet Christmas decorations adorn the shops and malls. Santa's sleigh, pulled by six white kangaroos, sits beside the mall Christmas tree.

Apple is Everywhere: While it seems we are miles from everywhere, the iPhone is still available. I had to smile today when an Aborginal artist, at a community center, pulled out her iPhone to show us photos of her past work.

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