Bog Snorkelling at Julia Creek

Julia Creek is about as far away from an cold Irish peat bog as you can get. It's hot and dusty and there's not usually much mud around.

But that hasn't deterred organisers of the town's Dirt and Dust Festival from holding a bog snorkelling competition and inviting the world bog snorkelling champion Julia Galvin along to compete.

They dug a trench about 30 metres long and filled it with water to create the "bog". A few red claw crayfish were also added as a special surprise!

Julia Galvin, World bog champion and Justin Vardey, Event organiser.


Julia wades in...

For the near-sighted, article reads (by-John Andersen , in the Townsville Bulletin) --

NEARLY THERE . . . Julia Galvin, of Ireland, during her epic ‘swim’

Bog champ conquers creek

She came, she saw, she bog snorkeled. Julia Galvin, world champion Irish bog snorkeller, took Julia Creek by storm. The two Julias —the town and the bog snorkeller— loved each other. Ms Galvin is a cross between bog snorkeling athlete and performer. As the sole competitor in the event, she played to the crowd, singing “I’ve Been a Bog Snorkeller”, as she sat at the edge of the bog hole seconds before her epic swim on Sunday.

She’d seen the bullriders go through their over-the-top prayer to the Lord before the bull-riding event on Saturday night and came up with one of her own: ‘‘Lord I want to thank you for the beautiful bog in Julia Creek. For some reason you have blessed me with this insanity, so please Lord, let me put it to good use. And seeing as this is Queensland, Lord, let me survive this drive.’’ She added the last bit after taking note of the many public service signs on her way to town.

She abruptly ended a radio interview in Julia Creek’s main street on Saturday morning when the interviewer introduced her as Julia Galvin ‘from the UK’. Ms Galvin stormed down the footpath shouting ‘I’m from Ireland. Ireland! ’A good sport, she came back, but the interviewer didn’t mention the UK again. The town turned out to see her perform yesterday and she didn’t disappoint. With her wet suit, flippers, face mask and snorkel, she cut an imposing figure as she strutted her stuff at the bog snorkeling arena, joking and singing. She’d already competed in the cow-pat throwing competition and was in a hurry to get to the fly-swatting contest.

Bog snorkellers, it seems, just want to have a go at everything.


Hitting the highway -with a thump

JOHN ANDERSEN in the Townsville Bulletin reports;
...Ms Galvin said her training involved a slow breathing technique, fast leg movement and a slow, powerful arm stroke
that resembled a John Travolta disco movement. In coming to Australia to compete she said she felt she had the weight of the world on her shoulders.

"I am representing Ireland and the rest of the world," she said. On her drive out to Julia Creek she saw a dingo and some emus, but only roadkill kangaroos.

"I'm not interested in seeing reptiles or spiders up close," she said. Several times...'



OZ -Reports from the front line #4

Sunday 30th cont.

When John asked for his tickets I asked for mine again and they were there after all. Hurray! It turns out that I did know John after all. I had given him and few more a lift after a wedding 2 years ago.

John showed me a txt from his mother, saying that she heard a rumour from Billy Keane that Tadhg Kennelly had organised her son to be sitting next to a celebrity.. ha ha.

More to follow.

OZ -Reports from the front line #3

Sunday 30th

Armed against the sun with factor 50, a sun hat, red glittery Pom poms and an Umbrella! ...I went to S.C.G. in a taxi which I must say are Very cheap in comparison to home. I went to the box office to pick up my ticket that Tadhg had kindly left me.... the whole place was a sea of red and white...30 odd degrees and not a cloud in the sky.... oh man was i going to burn!?
I asked the lady for my ticket... and she couldn't find it! my heart sank, but I knew that another Listowelee was going to be there so I waited for him...John Perryman.. I knew of the Perrymans but wasn't too sure if I would recognise him or not.. It was great when he finally came along as I was getting no joy trying to plamas the ticket ladies... Telling me that they couldn't sort a ticket for me that it was a "Tie" issue They can't say Tadhg down here.

OZ -Reports from the front line #2

Sat 29th

I had been warned by the guys in Listowel to bring home Tadhg Kennelly Memorabilia...so...i spent a lot of money buying smiths crisps looking for a sydney swans Sticker of Tadhg... SEVERAL bags later I decided to read the packet.... N.R.L National rugby league!! not A.F.L ..Australian Football League! Depending on what part of oz footy means different games. Not to worry Julia Got to see the man himself play on Sunday

OZ -Reports from the front line

Friday April 28th
The hair was not in a fit state to be seen and a hair-do was no.1 on the list of priorities... so I ended up on the edge of Chinatown in George's St and got my hair done by a Japanese lady called Aki who gave me a cut that made me look like one of the Beatles for $275... ouch1. I wandered around a few skinny people shops until a big Russian woman told me to go to Bondi Junction shopping centre. So thats what i did. I went on the train and came back on the bus. I find the trains a bit grubby but they have seats that flip up so you are never travelling backwards.
I went to see Kevin O'Shea that evening and his lovely ladies Tan and Ruby. I had a lovely seafood pasta and I think I ate calamari...Frank isn't big on exotic seafood ...i.e anything other than Donegal catch. When I got back to the Hostel I had a "golden Gaytime"