This is started on the morning we left Adelaide to go north on the train.
I remember that old blind woman, Janjingu she was called and she had only just come in from the northern desert but she trotted off to the Line without a moment's hesitation. "The new begging has been explained to me," she said and she went and perched herself right on the edge of a wooden sleeper, standing firm in her own darkness and she didn't even flinch when she heard the train approaching. She held out her hands in a gesture of supplication and lifted her blind face upwards as if she was expecting God himself to reach down and kiss her. It was an act of faith and it worked. The train stopped right beside her although it had not yet reached the station and something about her appearance made everyone who saw her very generous. The windows of several carriages were opened and she was pelted with cooked meats, pieces of fruit and cigarettes. She stood quite still until the inundation was over and then she peeled off the dress that I had given her that morning and piled her treasures into it, feeling for them on the ground. Naked and triumphant she set off back to my camp, never noticing the laughter that followed her.
[source] Blackburn, J. 1994. Daisy Bates in the Desert. p.149. Melbourne: Minerva.
The party consists of:
We left Adelaide early in the morning under a mild volley of press photographers and news men and ran out into the wheat belt quickly. The day, at first cool, started to warm up before we got to Terowie, where we made our first change of trains, by then it was a scorcher. The country consisted of eternal wheat fields, all in the process of being harvested, with a resulting dust that soon penetrated to every part of our carriage.
At Terowie, lined by high stacks of bagged wheat, we had a lunch of sorts and changed over to a narrow guaged train. The carriage contained just one compartment with the seats facing each other. We found it much more comfortable to sit on the step outside, in spite of the dust.