Culture Exchange- November 18, 2018

This morning was refreshing, I sure slept good. We met right away at the Rendezvous Hotel for the Cultural Exchange. When we got to the location where they are doing speeches, I learned that many Indigenous tribes in Australia also suffered culture shock, loss of language, culture and tradition because of colonization. There is a high suicide rate in Indigenous people here too. It's quite similar to our situation. I could not believe it but the facts are there.

 The Coodanup girl's group welcome dance is interesting. I love the music, singing and dancing. It reminds me of our dances like the sun dance and many more. Reservations also exist in Australia. One speaker talked about being taken into white families at a young age similar to the 60’s scoop. The parents were not told that the children were taken, they were just grabbed without any explanation. The people here pass on the traditional dances to next generations which is awesome. I saw young and old dancing, it was beautiful. 

 In 1834, there was a slaughter called the Pinjarra Massacre. A village got attacked by a group of 25 soldiers, police and settlers led by Governor James Stirling. The boat cruise was very exciting. I saw a dolphin in the water but it was so quick I did not have time to take a picture. The people in the group are very friendly and helpful. The food is also especially delicious. They served Kangaroo meatballs and I loved it. It tastes like moose meat. Young indigenous youth in Australia turn to alcohol and drugs as a distraction like some youth do in Canada. 

The park tour was very fun I conversed with many youth. I learned that in their culture, God came in the form of a serpent. They later served fruit salad and some yummy beverages. I took some nice photos as well. I was asked by a person working on a documentary if he could interview me later in the week because they want to ask as many people about the conference. I said I could. The tour bus bathroom is also nice, there were handles in there in case the ride gets intense while you're doing your business so you have something to hold on to. We did not visit the massacre site because we ran out of time I believe. Overall, it was very fun, education, relaxing and an adventure. 

 Erickson Owen

Photo of the group on the dock from Bindjareb Park

Photo of the group on the dock from Bindjareb Park

Group on boat cruise called Dreamtime Cruise

Group on boat cruise called Dreamtime Cruise

Piece of artwork from Mandjar Square

Piece of artwork from Mandjar Square

Erickson Owen