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2-335 (Original)

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author,male,Byrne, J.C.,un addressee
Narrative Discourse
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Plaint Text :
Public Written
Ward, 1969
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The life of a squatter is generally calm and unvaried, presenting little of the ills, and few of the cares of life, if he act with common prudence. If not dwelling at the most distant out-stations, there is but little fear of molestation from the Aborigines, as these unfortunates are becoming few in number and depressed in spirit. Once or twice a year the squatter visits Melbourne, Geelong, or Portland, to dispose of his wool, pay his licence dues, and procure tea, sugar, slops, and-such other stores as are required at his station. When at home, he is engaged in seeing that his shepherds and other servants perform their duty; and, in riding about his run, looking after his cattle, and taking care that none of them stray. A gallop after a native dog, a kangaroo, or emu, sometimes diversifies the sameness of this life. The majority of the squatters are single men; and this fact is generally apparent on approaching a station, by the neglect evident around. [193] Although timber in abundance is at hand, yet the squatter often contents, himself for years with a bark hut, or the roughest possible slab one, through which wind and weather penetrate; the richest land may be at hand, yet the mere trouble of cultivating a few potatoes, or vegetables, is but seldom taken, although they would form a great improvement to the general bush fare - meat and damper. Rough huts for the men, and a detached one for the master, generally stand on the banks of some river, creek, or in the vicinity of water holes, the hurdle and folds for the sheep being at a short distance. It may be occasionally that a patch of wheat, or barley, is in sight, for the use of the station, but this even, is only the case when it is the head station. The absence of women, and scarcity of labour in the bush, is inimical to comfort there; but this is little considered, as the climate is so dry and healthy, that constant exposure to the weather is attended with no bad results.
But although the abodes of the squatters are generally indicative of neglect and carelessness, such is not always the case: domestic comfort is sought after by some, and brick, stone, or comfortable wooden houses erected, around which are gathered, in some instances, not only many of the comforts of life, but a happy family to enjoy them.