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I have had the pleasure of having my mother come and stay with me directly following her 65th Birthday this weekend. I did everything in my power to kill her since she was staying with me which started by trying to scare her to death.

Her childhood dream had been to travel to ‘El Questro’ and enjoy the finer things in life at the homestead and swanning around the private rock holes. As part of her birthday gift I facilitated this for her. She spent 3 days st the ‘El Questro’ station on her lonesome expecting me to jump out from around every corner…..which I did not!

She then arrived in Darwin and I took her down to Lake Bennet for the start of the week. We arrived in the dark and she wandered out to the terrace to look at the stunning lake waters with my girlfriend when lo and behold my sister (who lives in Perth) jumped out with a bottle of Champas and she got such a fright she almost careened over the balustrade into the water……surprise accomplished!

Anyways the crux of this story revolves around the old mystery of the NT as to ‘when do you truly become a Northern Territorian?’. There are many and varied rules however I reckon I can give you one that forms a good starting guideline before you even start to apply.

Over the next 2 days we enjoyed paddling and swimming in Lake Bennett, swimming at the spectacular Florence Falls and wallowing in the Buley Rock Holes.

My mother commented on how wonderful and accessible the water hole opportunities were in the NT and questioned “Why would you go to ‘El Questro when this is available right here?’ which is a pretty amazing recommendation since she loved ‘El Questro’.

My sisters comment was more poignant when she stated “I have no idea how you just dive into every bit of water you see with no second thoughts about being eaten by a Croc!”……..Firstly I can tell you that I don’t…..The thought of a Croc is always there in this Southerners mind as a death that strikes swiftly from below!

So I suggest……You can start to ask the questions as to whether you may be considered a Northern Territorian only after you do not think about Crocs eating you alive when you are in the local swimming pool!