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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Why Pooh Bear Corner?

So we went to Canberra on the Saturday night of the long weekend. It was very enjoyable. It was a cooking class birthday. That is, everyone gets designated spots in a commercial kitchen and cooks the meal that you eat. It was in Fyshwick next to the markets. I would definitely recommend it but I forgot to get the name of the place. If you know, leave a comment below.

Canberra is the kind of town a German would love - it is 'lebensraum' - it is breathing space and organisation... Park lands followed by playgrounds followed by amenities followed by ... Floriade... It is a parliament that leads down a big wide boulevarde to the war memorial, it is satellite suburbs of concentric circles. When you arrive it excites you like you found a piece of Endor (the place Ewoks come from). You come over a ridge after Lake George and then meander on for a bit and then you see the Black Mountain Tower beeping a red light and you think you might see a jedi fighter come over the horizon.... and soon after you see parliament house and you feel, for a moment, that you have arrived at a city of the future.... It is just unfortunate that it wears off and by the time you leave you think 'I might give it a bit before I come back'. But it grows on you, year on year, you see that there is an alternative to the lifestyle you lead and you believe, rightly or wrongly, that if you move there you will 'give it a good shot, really get my life together; take long strolls, go mountain bike riding, drink plenty of fresh water'. But I envisage that after a while I would be a slob on the dole and sitting at home watching porn and eating cheezels. What keeps me going back is family. And the family I have in Canberra are so fantastic that I have to love a city that makes them who they are.

It was after we finished in Canberra that we drove down to the South Coast towards Bateman's Bay on the Kings Highway. My girlfriend grabbed my phone and said 'I need to do some research'. I am on HTC Sensation Android these days and I have not looked back, it really is fast, especially on google.

She was googling the question: "Why are there teddy bears nailed to trees on the way to Bateman's Bay?" She refined the search after she got a bite - I do love how the searches get narrowed - "Why poo bear corner? Why poo bears on trees Kings Highway South Coast"

When the answers came back it seemed that there was some discrepancy between the answers. The first reason was that it was a protest against a memorial that residents had wanted to put up after a local community road fatality and so they had put up the bears in protest. Then there was the belief that the teddy bears marked the way to a nudist colony (which was the coolest but most unlikely reason I thought), then there was the belief that they were put there as a protest by the greenies to deter loggers from cutting down the trees which had cute little bears nailed to them. But then, that didn't explain Pooh Bear Corner.

Pooh Bear Corner was a cave on the side of the road which was just big enough for a couple of big Pooh Bears to be having a little tea party. This cave, which really captures your attention as you wind through the roads was apparently of historical significance, marking the point where the Australians would blow up the road from the coast if the Japanese invaded in World War II.

Regardless of it's significance, it certainly adds to the character of the journey from Bungendore to Bateman's Bay and I am hoping that this whole trend might take off across the country and bring a little character to each part of the nation. So, to the first person who nailed the first Pooh Bear I say this 'You have done a very wonderful thing!"

This is not me, this is a photo I found on google images of Pooh Bear Corner. If it belongs to you, please let me know so I can give you some credit for managing to stop on such a hairy part of the road. 

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