Whatever it is, is up to you
What is the outback? It would seem that any country town more than a few hundred kilometres from the coast has declared itself “the gateway to the outback”, but I haven’t been able to find a line on a map that defines its borders. Is the outback a town? Is it a feel? Is it anywhere that meets your list of requirements for it, or is it whatever you want it to be?
Is the outback any place you want to visit but its remoteness makes the journey challenging?
People often make comment on my extensive travels of the ‘outback’ but it was just the other day that for some reason I wondered what it actually was.
Perhaps an as yet undefined word, definitely a mystical place for those who wish to visit it, a place of characters and tough existences, of sunrises and sunsets only available in dreams. A harsh and unforgiving environment hiding infinite raw beauty under a liberal coating of dust. The outback seems to be a place of hard stories, hard people, hard seasons and hard luck but is that what it actually is or is it the land of opportunity?
On face value it’s probably what you’ve seen in the movies, which is generally exactly what I described above but for many who live or have lived there it has been home and one that has given so much.
Australians have always had a fascination with the outback and I think in some way we all see ourselves having some of the attributes of the rugged characters that have the rare ability to call it home. Some have already ventured there, most would like to at some stage of their life and I love to inspire them all to achieve this dream, to get out there and touch it, to let a little bit of it stain their skin and enter their blood.
For me the outback is whatever I want it to be; you can’t contain its wonder in borders and definitions. It’s anywhere that challenges me in a physical or psychological way, it’s anywhere remote and untamed.
I believe that most people will find what I stumbled across in the outback; the place I go to seek adventure and always end up discovering freedom.