Tuesday, 3 September 2013

An inner urban humpy

Walking through the little park at the end of my street the other day I was thrilled to see a rather well made humpy. It had been really windy and many branches from the big gum tree that is the main feature of the park had broken. (what is it about gum trees - they are messy things - love them as I do but....) The dead branches had been lying around awaiting the Council clean up (not often - and not well!) 
The Hodgson Humpy
I was interested to see the definition of a humpy. It is a small, temporary shelter made from bark and tree branches, traditionally used by Australian Aborigines, with a standing tree usually used as the main support. The names humpy, gunya and wurlie (SA) have now become part of the Australian lexicon.
A 19th-century engraving showing Aboriginal people and humpy (wikipedia)
At first I thought it was just a pile of old broken branches but as I got closer - there in my little park was a humpy - sometimes called a lean-to. I don't know who created it but I suspect it was children. How much more fun to be creating a hidy-hole than playing in the Council supplied playground.
The humpy 'doorway'
The Council-created playground next door!

If I was a child - I think the humpy looks more fun - especially if I had made it! I could let my imagination run wild!

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