... Or at least something that sounds like it.
You'll find here the "re -arranged" transcription of our email exchange in order to compile an interview. It french version if you are curious should be available here.
Clint is the blocke who answered my roadtrip ad on Gumtree. I thought that removing weeds from the Outback was some kind of a cool job (even though it is not cool out there, but rather hot, but that's playing on words fellas ;) )
Just in case, what I wrote is in red, Clint's answers are black.
So Clint, could you please present yourself to my readers?
I am not sure how you want me to present myself thats a bit hard you have to make something up for that..
Okay, let me put it differently, what is ur job "title" and what does that it consist in? To me u go in the outback and de-weed coz it is bad for the native plants, but I'm sure there is more to it, or it sounds very scholar if I put it like that...
Well then I'm a Field technition. A field tech has the ability to fix and solve logistical and personnel issues in remote area situations , which can be quite challenging if you have not prepared, or just when ya get one from left field as you found out yourself .. damb ute . But it requires a cool head and the ability to foresee problems not just fix stuff as i goes bad . and we work mainly surveying to control weeds of national significance , spraying after a management plan is worked out with the landholders and government.
the job is a lot like being a captain on a boat but there is no water its all desert i know it sounds stupid but thats what its like a bit,, its all about survay and mapping weed infestations which they never did before we introduced the idea to them which seems unreal that noone has done or though about ..hey 100 years of weed wacking has done noting usefull but its all the( i tried nuting and im all out of ideas mentality) we changed that now we have a brand new aproachand its working as well as a disfuncitinal gvmnt department will provide..
What is the best advice you could give while travelling in the outback?
Well its been a bit interesting out here lately 2 people have died from heat related deaths within 24 hrs vehicle breakdown . One was last week near Mootawingie park ...We went for a walk there that day so my advice would be to carry lots of water , beer counts as water too.. The outback is a hard mistress she don't muck around.In a break down . never leave your vehicle and don't panic .. a car is 100 times easier to find than someone under a bush dying in the sun.. remember the world is a small place after all and you will be found and as soon as you leave no one knows where to look anymore , which direction would they go...!
When and why did u decided to do this? Weren't you in the wine making industry before that?
2003 after coming back from St Francis wines in Sonoma valley was dissalusioned with the bulk wine mentality and was seemed no one cared much and after 10 yrs in the industry probably 20 or 30 if you count nursury and vineyard work was always in the block doing something ats a little bit good for your soel. but i was at my cousins place at a barbie an yhe dude next door popped his head over and said do i know any one that wants a job and i replied not really cause i just did a vintage of night shift on the presses , but he said i was in and that was it , was off to west . aus working doing geophysic,s as a lacky near kalgoolie ..but afer a few years fly in fly out got sick of not being home and set up my own bizness with the skills gaind from the mining survay work . which is all new and novel in the weed world as the dont or have never thought of mapping it before spraying.....what a bunch of dingbatts.. well sometimes ya have to get out of the box to see it in a new way ...hey.
I there any thing that can be done bay any traveller to minimise the impact on the native plants?
Weeds are bad ok.. ........its as simple as scraping your boots off where ya are before ya leave , like eg sa does not have pheloxira wich is a grape para cite traveling in soil which devestates own roots vines ,but in victoria it is everyware scrape your shoes people..out bush you can clearly see where some weeds start at gates where people get out the car and it comes off there shoes and so on.. rant snort rave...a little mouth foam.
Clint in front of a weed, yes, the nice oversized green bush is a weed.
What background is necessary to do this job?
There are no classes in common sence yet to be conducted to teach people about the job .. its not for everyone , a love for heat and flies would be a good start, but its good to shed all the stuff town life has to offer, and get down to basic,s and see how much stuff really doesent matter , and some stuff that really does.had one guy winging he was having dreams inside dreams because it was so peacefull out there.. bloody wombat..
You said u work mainly survaying to control weeds of national significance....> How often do you go back to those places?
As for the weeds we try to do section every 2 years but it way too long someyear it tippaburra another its at mennindie around the lakes , the only common thing is that they are always in an out of the way places , but thats the way i like it anyway..
So if I understand correctly, U came back from the states in ur early 30s, got fed up with the mentality and found urself a job WA in mining. After a few years u left and started ur own business of weed survey with ur new field experience.----> Did u choose it (the weed spraying business) as a passion for being outdoor and a genuine willingness to preserve native plants, or did u see the niche no one thought of, or probably bit of both?
As for your next question... Got sick of never being home a few years living out of a suitcase in varios places that were never nice.. never anyware with a lake or non industrial.. mining hey its a dirty world.
What is your favourite thing on the job?
Fav thing on the job .....Well its the simplicity sometimes when your out its the little things that make it .
To finish, what is ur top three favourite places u've worked in?
Well thats a tough one
dunk island where i did my 365 days of consecutive leisure was right up there .i lived at mission beach in a house on the beach for 30 bucks a week. tough to top.
Daintree was nice ,
Cobham lakes about 100ks from tipaburra is magical in beuty with not a person in 50 klm in any direction no nuthing .
Sandfire in western australia , gidgiee trees thousand years old knarled wood.timeless lanscape.
This is how it went for the interview. If it doesn't sound too bad, you're aussie mate, if you're french and you understand all of it, you've spent some time down under I'd say. Nevertheless, I you have any questions or comments, please feel free to hit the "laisser un commentaire" link and write down what you think.
Cheers for passing by ;)
Photo credits Clint. More info here