Wednesday, October 24, 2007

N Is For Nhill

Cut To The Quick (Rather Too Quick, In Fact)

The rotunda on Nhill's main street. Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON


Nhill is a picturesque little town in the Wimmera. Head up the Western Highway on the way from Melbourne to Adelaide and Nhill is pretty much the halfway mark.

Back at 1994, we were driving to Adelaide for Easter when I suffered the embarrassment of being booked for speeding for the first time in my life. This was a watershed event in the McMahon clan, because all my family and friends know I always stick scrupulously to the speed limit.

But hey, I blame my mother-in-law for this debacle.

Don't get me wrong. I'm a big fan of my mother-in-law (and the grapevine tells me she's rather a big fan of mine) but let's pin this one on her.

I'd just driven through Nhill when my wife and mother-in-law swapped places in the car. My wife sat in the back and m-i-l, who was holidaying with us at the time, took the navigator's seat.
Mate, not that you need a navigator when you're driving from Melbourne to Adelaide. You just get on the Western Highway and don't get off. Ya just sorta keep goin'. And goin'. And goin'.

Then, just under 800 kilometres (that's 500 miles for my US readers) you see a sign that says ``Welcome to Adelaide''. Simple, yeah? So simple that even a country bumpkin like me can do it without a navigator.

Before you drive through any Outback town, the speed limit drops sequentially. You drop from 110 km/h to 80 km/h and then to 60km/h before you enter a town - and only a blind man would miss the signs.

Hmmmm, blind men and blokes who are busy talking to their mother-in-law. Okay, so I missed the 60 sign. And I sailed into the town of Kaniva doing 80. As soon as I realised my error I dropped my speed back - but it was too late.

My lapse of concentration cost me $165 and after I drove off again, gritting my teeth in decidedly indelicate fashion, there was another flash of gallows humour.

Our six-year-old announced brightly she couldn't wait to get back to school, to tell her friends that I had been busted for drink-driving.

I almost choked on my emotion. ``Drink-driving? I wasn't booked for drink-driving,'' I protested.``Yes, you were, Daddy. You were drinking your chocolate milkshake.''


The post office at Nhill. Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON

43 comments:

Pope Terry said...

tsk tsk, drink driving, for shame David.

Merisi said...

Those little rascals,
they catch you EVERY time! :-)))

Deb said...

lol, and thank God I don't drive, cos I'm quite often filled up with choc milkshake (my favourite!) Nhill looks like a nice place to relax with a few drinks...um mmmm.

photowannabe said...

I love the way kids make up words that just fit the situation. Great story and nice ABC Wednesday post. I will be posting mine later tonight.

Lynette said...

Great story and great photos of Nhill--surely this will be the most unique N word for ABC Wednesday. However did it get that name?

Cuckoo said...

Ha Ha....

I loved your 6 year old for that !!

RUTH said...

I love your daughters drink driving remark...LOL. Great story :o) How is Nhill pronounced btw?
Keep smiling
Rx

Nicole said...

Nhill looks lovely... if I ever get the opportunity to drive from Melbourne to Adelaide or the other way, I'll definitely stop in.

mrsnesbitt said...

LOL! The stories I could tell about escaping speed fines on the motorbike! LOL! David, there are SO many LOL! BUT being the sensitive soul I am, I wont mention them to you, ie you who were caught! LOL!

Ananda Niyogi said...
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Ananda Niyogi said...

$165 is a big price to pay for 'fasssst foot' :-)

Shrink Wrapped Scream said...

Ha-ha, that's priceless! Thesedays, I try my best to lead a blameless life, Sam is NOTORIOUS for relaying every single part of our home life (with his own unique twist)back to his teachers at school. I've given up ammending his versions, in fear they think I protest too loudly..

Ackworth Born said...

it looks a fascinating little town. On the town website it says "Nhill is home to Australia's largest single-bin grain silo, located in the centre of town." - what a weird claim to fame!

Melissa said...

Great story David! Don't you just love the things that our kids come up with?

Mike said...

It's a funny name for a town, Nhill. Great story David.

lime said...

LOL, out of the mouths of babes. we live near a state border and have lots of agressive dreivers from the other state in our area. one day when i was muttering curses against a particularly aggressive driver (who happeend to be from my own state) i heard my young son ask from the backseat, 'mommy, aren't you going to tell them to go back to their own damn state?'

busted!

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Nice pictures of a quaint looking town.

Don't worry about the speeding charge it happens to me all the time. Once I got two different tickets on the same day. One at 10 am and one at 7pm.

joan said...

Your pictures are wonderful and I enjoyed seeing them!

kml said...

Cute story!

A very picturesque looking town!

Hammer said...

Driving under the influence od chocolate...yeah we've all been there ;)

dot said...

Kids say the darndest things!

Amrita said...

O my goodnes you got a ticket for dui...chocolate milk shake tsk...tsk. I like the rotunda, that 's what you call it, reminds me of a Victorian band stan

NorthBayPhoto said...

Very beautiful photos of the town. Amusing story about the speeding ticket as well.

Thanks for visiting my NorthBayPhoto blog.

Brian in Oxford said...

Getting written up in a town like that will have you feeling Nhillistic.

Sassy Lucy said...

Drink driving too darn cute...thanks for visiting the Bookworm's ballroom. Leighann and I appreciate your visit, and I will be adding you to our author's blogroll.

Oswegan said...

A milkshake and a mother-in-law . . .

Enough to make the best of us speed.

I am adding you to my ABC list.

~Oswegan

Suldog said...

Hah! That's funny stuff. I often "drink drive", but coffee instead of a chocolate milkshake. I'd better watch it.

There's a contest up at my place, so you might like to head on over. It concerns the World Series, so entry time is limited.

karoline said...

what a positively fabulous building david..just gorgeous...

k:)

BRUNO said...

Let's see---if I read correctly, that was in 1994, your daughter was six then---by now, she's probably already passed Dad's "watermark" for driving, on her own, huh???

Dan Mega said...

Ah how I remember the days when the parents get pulled over for speeding while my brothers and I were yelling for the cops to take em to jail! Ha!

Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

“Picturesque” is an excellent description. Thanks for the photos.

Corey~living and loving said...

awwwwwwwwww that is so cute....ummm not getting the ticket...but your child's view on it. So did she tell everyone? LOL that would be embarrassing. :)

WalksFarWoman said...

Nhill - What a strange name David, how did it come about?

I was driving into town this morning and just spotted a speed trap just in time - I think. :)

Glad you like your M-I-L David, better a friend than an enemy!!

Btw, I'm getting your book in 12-20 days - can't wait.

imac said...

Dont think I've got a pic of a choc milk shake, hehe ooops.Too bad David, yep, I agree its the Mum-In-Law every time, she should have seen the signs.lol.

Jeni said...

Loved the story about your ticket and your daughter's threat to tell all you were "drink-driving" -too cute. And speaking of cute, the post office there in Nhill looks really quaint and pretty.

Colleen said...

How does the Bible saying go.."Out of the mouth of Babes(!)" That's a funny story though!!

Neva said...

I LOVE this story....what a great "N" word and man, gotta love kids!!!!

Kate Isis said...

Great photos and loved the story, especially the drink driving :))))

Jo Beaufoix said...

Hee hee. Far too cute.

*Goddess* said...

Looksl like a nice little park to sit and have lunch.

Skanky Jane said...

The Road to Nhill is one of my fave movies.

SJ xx

juliesjewels said...

Nhill is pronounced - wait for it - nil

Nhill means - mist over the water


Nice to see some old blog entries on my town

sex said...
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