Celebrating the Australian spirit
This summer of floods has been an incredible test of character for all the people who’ve faced it. And through it all, amongst the tragedy, sadness and loss, our Aussie spirit has shone through, brighter than ever.
Stories of bravery, sacrifice and mateship abound. Friends drop everything to go and help their friends. Total strangers put their lives at risk to save others. People wade into floodwaters to save stranded dogs, cats and even kangaroos.
People who live on high ground offered their driveways, their yards and even their houses so total strangers can store their possessions and have somewhere to sleep.
At the evacuation centres, piles of goods were stacked up, willing hands put sandwiches together and people with nothing to do but wait for the worst were met with kind words and a hot cuppa.
Once again, the emergency workers are in the thick of it. Rescuing the stranded, plucking people from rooftops, putting their lives at risk. The SES, the police, the chopper crews, firemen and everyone else deserve the highest of accolades.
From interstate, people are helping as best they can. Donating money and organising fundraisers. Feeling helpless, but driven to help in any way they possibly can.
In good times, we all go about our business without a second thought for the people across the road, or next door, or who just moved in up the street. But in the hard times, that’s when we open our arms, open our hearts and start to help each other. Why does it take a disaster like this to bring out the best in people? Because that’s when we need to do it. So we do.
And as always, Aussies face the toughest times with determination and and also with good humour. Like the people surrounded by floodwater, sitting on their verandahs with beers in hand. In the midst of all that water, they’ve still managed to find a beer, and drink it with a smile. Or the guys in the background of the news shots, wading through waist deep water with a carton on their shoulder. Or the teenagers paddling up and down their home streets in canoes and kayaks, and on surfboards.
Or the lady on the ABC news who was interviewed amongst the devastation of Grantham. Her home was gone, her neighbours and friends were dead and missing. Her town was virtually destroyed. One moment she was in tears, the next she was laughing out loud. Why? Because the pub was gone and she couldn’t even get a cold beer.
And what she was saying, loud and clear, along with everyone else was this – ‘we can take it’. Whatever you’ve got, we can take it, we can laugh at it, and then we can bounce back.
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