Bush walks

Aboriginal people used the land for everything in their lives. Plants were not only a source of food, but also a source of medicine, hygienic care, and home uses.

We were fortunate enough to go on two bush walks during our class. The first was with Ngala Koondarm Boodjah, a family run company, who specializes in bushwalks and lectures about Aboriginal life. The second was at the Wardan Cultural Center with where our guide was Clinton, a Torres Strait Islander.

Ngala Koondarm Boodjah Bush Walk

Our guide, Steve shows us how one plant's leaves gave off a sort of lather when wet. This was used as a soap.

Steve also explains to the class about boundaries as we take a break in the shade. The bush is very open and there are not many trees around. 

Lindsay holds fluff from the Belga tree. This is just one of the many products that come from this tree and is useful to the Aboriginal people.  

Bush walk at the Wardan Center

Clinton is showing us how tribes would mark a tree which became the boundaries of their land. If someone was traveling and came across a marking of another tribe they would be required to have a traveling stick to show that they were there for a reason. If they did not have a message stick then they would be killed for trespassing. Clinton explains to us how accessible food is for the Wardandi people. Since they are people of the sea they eat a lot of seafood.
In this picture we are learning about the different shelters that the Aboriginal people lived in. They invented the first air conditioning and heating system with the way that their hut was built, the way of the wind, and the position of the fire. Also, if a spear was in the middle of the fire pit it meant the door was shut, otherwise the door was open. A woman had a way of making her own alarm system. When she would leave the house she would brush a pattern into the sand that only she knew. If she arrived home and saw the pattern was different, she would know someone had been trespassing. Clinton stands in front of the Belga tree. An Aboriginal person could live off of this tree. It can provide nourishment, shelter, and medicine, and ingredients for the glue to make tools.

We would like to thank both of these groups for their time with us and for teaching us so much!!