Underground Water Olive by Janet Nakamarra Long
Water is a most precious commodity in Northern Territory. Annual average rainfall in Alice Spring is about 24mm. 90% of territories water supply comes from underground. The Todd River flows through Alice Springs only when there is downpour of rain water, otherwise most of the time the river is just dry sand. However, there is a Regatta every year. This is the only Regatta race in the world held on dry sand and soil, known as Todd River Race.
In the old days there was no ‘town water’ supply available. Despite this, Aboriginal people knew where to find drinking water. Water was available underneath the soil near trees, rocks and near the wild bird movements etc. Aboriginal people used digging sticks, Coolamon etc. to dig and fetch the water to drink. Janet Long is a well-known and skilled artist and she wonderfully depicted soakage, aquifers porous, rocks, etc. Her artwork is excellent and vivid.