I don't know why news from Australia about beer and its place in the culture seems so odd to my, frankly, more prudish than puritanical Canadian eyes but here is another item about a rough situation in the south-western part of the country in today's news...or is that tomorrow's...that is unlike something you would read about here:
Kalgoorlie residents are facing a shortage of fresh food and have only a few days' worth of beer left as the Great Eastern Highway remains closed for a fifth day by a deadly bushfire. The highway is expected to remain closed for another two days and Darby Renton, who runs an independent liquor store, says he cannot afford to have stock delivered via Esperance. He says he has run out of some items and only has a few days' beer supply left.Last summer it was the floods, now the bush fires. Never mind that there have even been three deaths of transport truckers on the highway. Kalgoorlie in Western Australia seems to be a mining centre town built on gold and drinking beer if this web page with photos of its Victorian hotels is anything to go, though it also seems to have a trendier side as well.
So is it the most thirsty town in OZ even in the best of conditions? This bit from an article on recycling there would make you think so:
DANNY WHYLIE: Oh, yeah, there's a fair bit of it. Yeah, there's a lot of wastage. Yeah, there'd be heaps of beer bottles, heaps of cans, lots of aluminium cans, heaps of plastic. And it all ends up in landfill.
SIMON FRAZER: Maybe even a few more beer bottles here than a few other places in the country, you reckon?
DANNY WHYLIE: Yeah, quite a few. Yeah, there's a lot of rattling and smashing going on in the hopper.