The coloring of this portrait of Don and me is simplistic:
That's because the tints were applied manually by me, when I was about eleven, during a period when I liked to fiddle around with photos.
During our childhood at Waterview, South Grafton, Don and I used to listen to country music performed by a fellow named Buddy Williams, who had got around to incorporating a variant of Swiss yodeling into his songs. Today, these songs strike us as rather corny, but we loved to listen to them constantly on our archaic gramophone with a wind-up spring. I've found a few YouTube samples of Buddy Williams songs that Don himself used to imitate, accompanied by his steel-stringed guitar.
Where the White-Faced Cattle Roam
Music in My Pony's Feet
Riding Home at Sundown
Here's an old photo of the cattle saleyards at South Grafton where Don once worked as an auctioneer:
On a nearby corner, in Ryan Street, there was a well-known pub: the Royal Hotel. Bruce Hudson reminded me that, one day, as a prank, a stockman had ridden a horse up the staircase, onto the first floor, and the publican found it impossible to persuade the animal to go back down again. (I can imagine my donkey in such a situation.) Finally, the only way of getting the horse back to ground level consisted of blindfolding it and dragging the poor animal down the stairs. As for the rumor that the stockman in question might have been my brother, I have no idea whatsoever...
I remember Don talking to me about the harsh cattle track along the Diamantina River, north of Birdsville, as if it were an awesome roadway to Paradise. This magnificent ballad by John Williamson is a subtle musical tribute to my brother's memory:
In the following photo showing Don at Wave Hill, the fellow in the white shirt is his friend Sabu Singh, born of Chinese and Aboriginal parents, who went on to become the manager of a large cattle station:
In the next photo, in black-and-white, Don is standing alongside a desolate Outback homestead:
In the following photo, Don is standing alongside his horse:
Finally, here's a photo of Don and our mother at South Grafton: