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Miracle Story

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Dr John Hinwood
Brisbane
QLD
Australia

Swim Here... Ask the Man!

Submitted into: Miracles of Travel Category,

On: 2013-12-02 20:07:50

It was a hot and sunny day in tropical northern Australia in the remote region of Cape York peninsula. I was with a group of friends in late September at the end of the dry season when our path north was halted by the Jardine River. This is pretty rough country in parts with four wheel drive necessary often to cross streams and traverse roads and tracks that have been dug up badly in the wet season and then dried out leaving some weird terrain to traverse.

Crossing the Jardine River is fun as you need to drive onto a very weathered punt which then ‘putt putts’ across the river. Waiting time can be a few hours if you just miss a service.

On the day in question we just missed the punt so we unloaded our folding chairs and sat under the shade of a nearby tree and chatted.

Not long after we sat down a tour operator pulled up in a four wheel drive with loaded roof rack and eight happy and relaxed backpackers. The young and energetic group all in their early twenties were throwing a Frisbee and laughing and chatting.

One very athletic young man asked his tour driver and guide, “it’s so bloody hot, is it OK to swim here?”

The guide replied, ”no, this is definitely not a good place to swim, it would be a miracle if you came out of the water alive”.

The young man asked, “are there sharks in there?”

The guide replied, “ask that man over there”. He was referring to a very weathered looking older Aboriginal local who helped in securing the punt on each of its arrivals and casting it off each time it headed for the other side of the river.

The young man in a strong American accent asked the punt hand, “are there man eating sharks in there?”

The punt hand answered in a very dry voice, “no sharks in there mate!”

The young adventurer starts stripping off to dive into the Jardine and his guide calls out, “ just before you dive into the river, ask the man why there are no sharks in the river”

The young man quite reluctantly asks the old punt hand, “ why aren’t there any sharks in the river?”

The old man replies with a chuckle, “‘cause the crocs eat the bastards”.

The young tourist learned that day the miracle of the unasked question.

 

 

Dr John Hinwood

Brisbane, Australia