In outback Silverton a donkey by the name of Pancakes (AKA Dollar) roams the village. No-one’s quite sure how old he is but he’s been there for years, the last of his lineage apparently. I introduced him in Opposites in Nature and a few people including Nikki and Steve were quite smitten by him, so I thought I’d do a follow up on him and his hometown.
Silverton was used as a movie set for Mad Max, Mission Impossible II and A Town Like Alice but, unless a film crew comes to town, this is a quiet place.
Pre Mad Max, way back in 1885, it had 10 pubs, three breweries and 3000 people. Today there’s less than 40 people that live here but the town’s far from dead. Just ask this guy.
He has a routine: 9.30am breakfast on the Horizon veranda, then off to the school museum and from there he makes his way to the gaol and back around to the pub.
Where ever he goes he gets pats, sometimes sandwiches and bowls of water. He’s loved by the locals and he greets visitors to the town. When we drove through for the first time he came up to our car and practically stuck his head in the window in greeting.
He might not say much but he makes himself known.
I rang the Silverton Information Centre today to check he was still alive and sure enough he is. I suspect he may live for decades yet. Still playing the starring role.
But there’s more to Silverton than just a resident donkey.
There’s history, including the old school and museum, the church used now by artists, a gaol with plenty of stories, a genuine outback pub and the fascinating Day Dream mine.
And there’s plenty of nostalgic fun for Mad Max fans inside the Mad Max Museum.
Then there’s the art. This backdrop is an artist’s paradise and the galleries are full of the colors and tones of Australia. And quirky bits and pieces.
I fell in love with the drawings inside this gallery by artist Justin Cowley. His art is quirky and fun and I couldn’t resist buying six postcards, which are stuck to my fridge at home.
Here they are, vibrant and colorful – like Silverton itself.
Wild horses roam around the outskirts of town.
Grazing peacefully. Minding their own business.
Old crumbling buildings depict how the place once was. Here I am framed in ruin.
It takes about two hours walking to see all of Silverton’s sights and buildings, depending on how long you linger in the studios!
Just out of town, the Mundi Mundi Plains is breathtaking.
The view of the barren desert wasteland in the wide, flat heart of the Australian outback goes on forever and it’s spectacular, especially at sunset.
On a clear day the curvature of the earth can be seen. Or so they say.
Silverton is a special place, one that evokes all the senses and it got under my skin and into my soul. It’s a place to experience a true Australian outback experience amid a canvas of red earth and brilliant blue skies.
I fell in love with it, with the dusty wide streets and the red earth, the colors, the bold art and the peace and quiet… and the docile village donkey that stole my heart.
Wishing you all light, love and color in your day. Where ever you are, I hope that the magic of life touches you.
Keep enjoying the journey.