Humans of the Wheatbelt - Melanie George

 Humans of the Wheatbelt is an initiative run by the Wheatbelt Health Network.

Humans of the Wheatbelt is an initiative run by the Wheatbelt Health Network.

I have been in New Norcia for over a year and the Wheatbelt since 2013. Before that I was in Wave Rock which is in Hyden where I was the only resident!

I have also lived in Wiluna for many years which is where my interest for the land & culture first started.

I have been in Australia for over 35 years but have been living in WA country for 20 years.

My textile designing father moved to Australia from South Africa and the company sponsored our family to join him two years later - I am the oldest of seven children. There are four girls and three boys. They all living in the city except me. I have nine nieces and nephews. They think I'm crazy but I think that they are the ones missing out. The country is just amazing.

I have a son who is 30 and living in Joondalup - we have different political views so we don't talk about politics.

I love talking to people. Travelling to places - being out and about. I am currently working at the roadhouse in New Norcia.

I spent two years living and working in the Ngaanyatjarra lands whose residents are mainly artist the beauty and nature of this country is clearly depicted in their paintings I learnt so much from the local Indigenous people. I was also fortunate to visit several sacred sites with the elders as our guide.

In New Norcia I just love its rural setting, country feel, gorgeous historical buildings, bush walking, people are so friendly,there's always someone to have a chat or socialise with I don't feel lonely at all. It's got that family welcoming feeling.

The Monks are interesting to talk to I feel that I learn so much (& laugh there are few that are very funny) from our little chats when ever they pop into the roadhouse or around town.

I have a passion for orchids. I joined the orchid society a few years ago. The native ones that I have found on bush walks have been amazing. I have found so many here in New Norcia.

I am going on my first field trip in June - I am very excited. I explore and since I found them here in New Norcia - it makes it an even more perfect place for me. I have some great mentors who always give some advice on the orchids I find. The orchids I am looking for are super tiny and very precious.

Once of my saddest moments was loosing my dog after 15 years. I had two dogs so the other one is quite lonely - we might get another one to keep her company. They are like my little children - I even have a stroller for them. I don't do anything without my dogs.

My advice would be - do something you're passionate about then you are guaranteed to succeed.

Human - Melanie George

Photographer & Interviewer - Anna Cornish