CAST YOURSELF BACK TO APRIL 2010….It’s my new home – it feels sublime and surreal. it’s peaceful and tranquil. It’s amazing. Actually it’s quite beautiful, but isolated and lonely. This mountain village of Poatina is indeed somewhere in the Tasmanian Wilderness. You have to see it to believe it, or perhaps, like me, you have to live there to see it, and then you’ll believe it. I’ve been here a week now. It doesn’t seem that long, yet it feels like it’s been ages. Only somewhere like Poatina can the confusion of time become so wonderful.
It gets dark at 6pm, it is dark at 6am. And at the moment I am working from 7 am until around 6pm. On broccoli farms nearby.
I am camping up here in the mountains. It costs just $5 a night to do that, and I’m working virtually every day which means I can easily economise and save money here. In fact by working 10 hours every day, I’m earning $180 a day, and spending less than $20 a day (on food, fuel and camping) so my dreams to travel to South America and Antarctica can be realised fairly soon.
I moved up here because I wanted to keep earning money, secure my second working holiday visa and enjoy the tranquility of a wilderness location such as Poatina. I have no internet here, but strangely my phone works OK! (this post is being uploaded in July, a few months after I left Poatina)
So aside from work, what is Poatina…?
It’s a very small village up in the mountains, and near to the Great Lake in central Tasmania. The population is………….just 166. So it’s definitely the smallest place I’ve ever lived in my life. And what’s more, of that 166, over 40% of which are under 18, so it’s a young village.
It was once the site of a power station but yet it is now a small village.
There is a purpose to the existence of Poatina. It is a drug and alcohol free haven. Because of this it is used as a rehabilitation haven for ex-drug and alcohol addicts. The guy that worked at the hostel was an English guy, called…Guy.
He helped the recovering alcos in the village. The beauty was you couldn’t buy alcohol anywhere within 26 kilometres (and after 5 pm, you’d even have to travel further in this deep deep wilderness). I gave up alcohol for 4 weeks when I was there, in fact I only had a drink twice in 6 weeks.
Once was for my friend Jenny Chen leaving to head back to Taiwan. That’s a photo of me and her on her last night.
The other time was for a big barbecue with all my broccoli work mates, towards the end of the season. Here’s a few photos and comments from my time in Poatina.
The main street in Poatina.
The town square in Poatina.
The villages entrance – nice rock and water monument.
A random village entertainment option – drive round on a Thomas The Tank Engine.
The village shop – which is always closed when I’m here.
When I first moved up here I had my own room in the mountain chalet hostel. This was nice and was real comfort, but to save money camping is a better option.
I can park here outside the hostel and we drive to work on the broccoli fields nearby.
This is one of the fields, at Lakehouse farm.
I lived it up in luxury for a while – this was my room in the mountain chalet hostel – Room 17.
The hostel kitchen.
The hostel lounge.
The hostel reception.
The hostel restaurant.
A barbecue in Poatina with all the broccoli work mates.
My tent in Poatina.
Where Is It – Near Cressy and Longford in the middle of Tasmania. It’s a mountain village in the middle of nowhere.
When Did I Live There – April – May 2010
Where I Stayed – Room 17 in Poatina Mountain Chalet Hostel and also in my tent
Population – 166 (of which 40% are under 18)
Animals I saw in Poatina – Rats, Possums, Tasmanian Devils, Deer (yes really!!), Wallabies
Sightseeing – Glass Rocks Monument at the village entrance, a golf course, a swimming pool, tennis courts, Thomas the Tank Engine, lots of wild animals.
Key Songs – (I was living in the middle of nowhere in isolation…)