three   In transit: across, (criss)crossing. I listen to Neil Young: "here in the conscious world we place our theories down, why man must bring us to our knees." I am near Warburton, WA, on my way to Old Piyul Outstation. We'd travelled 4000 km4: Sydney, Adelaide, Erldunda, Uluru, Kata Tjuta, Kaltukatjara, Ngaanyatjarra Country. Others went on to Patjarr, 300 km north, in the Gibson Desert. The dial reads 95km/hr. I'm terra-planing on red dust, in unfamiliar territory. I take note of markers along the way, to find my way back to camp, not to lose my way back: a curve, a mound, a grove, a contour, a line of hills, a large desert oak, Tjukita Soak , the profile of Lennard Bastion: "throw your weapons down, throw your hatred down ." Back at Piyul, Ngaanyatjarra women are showing white Sydney girls how to dig for goanna, how to build a wiltja, how to find water. Children show them how to make animal tracks with their hands. When I see them again, later that day, they have stories to tell. They are beside themselves with telling stories: "meanwhile in the underworld the weaknesses are seen, by peasants and presidents who plan the counter-scheme ." I am in transit across country - not my own. In a transit of tears, at the speed of oblivion: let me go, draw me (diaphanous) across the land.
   
four   Notes-for. Noting (down). Noticing. (An)notations. I notice the finest, most delicate, silent birds . I could hold two in the palm of a hand. I note (down) their features. I notice their transit as a narration. What traces they leave behind. How their traces track patterns of place. How place is this tracking, these traces: not things, but residues of passage. Passages of things which pass, in their coming to pass, and in their passing away - in their being always already elsewhere. Place as the always already elsewhere of the here and now. A passing wind through paperbark. Piyul soak: water in a grove of paperbark. One woman tells of a childhood here, keeping cool in the sunken soak. She tracks the transit of her life, and this track takes me to my own transiting, last Christmas, retracing my steps in Alexandria. Arbour of life, harbouring yarns.

     

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4 We: 20 architecture students from Adelaide, 15 from Sydney, 3 staff, 2 buses, 2 trailers, 21 days. Pretext: design
work on 4 ecotourism projects. Subtext: place and displacement.