In 1993 I bought a book in Australia. Written by a physican it told the real story of a man and a woman - Warri and Yathungka.
In their youth their tribes still knew, followed and respected the original lifestile of the Australian Aboriginals. The couple grew up in in the same tribe, the report is giving very gripping insights in the former lifestile of this independant people. Their paths were partly imagination - an imagination which was strong enough to give people a hold and a target. On their long ways through dry red lands and lost desserts there once had been so much life all around. Of course they had known all kind and sources of natural food, of old medicines, animal and botanical life - a knowledge of thousands of generations shifted over from the elders to the youth. But there was as well a sort of close relationship inside the tribe and to other folks they met on the way. News were spread from one coast of the fifth continent to the other.
Warri and Yathungka were teenagers then. Falling in love with each other was causing a big problem to them because their tribe only accepted a marriage with a spouse from outside maybe in a deeper knowledge to avoid inbreed. So there was only one way out...
They had to leave and make their own way alone just the two of them. The tribe had been refuge, protection and home for their people before since their arrival down under. Now the loss of this refuge had to be accepted wanting to make their life together.
After decades of enjoying seasons with the force of their youth they grew older and the draughts in the Australian summer turned more and more terrible. Meanwhile a lot of their folks had disappeared already, prefering a life in slums near the cities, abandoning the dreampaths and forgetting their history in favor of a new god:
For Warri and Yathungka surviving was threat by increasing weakness. The kangaroos were mostly shot or disappeared and the couple moved with their old dogs from one spot to another, humbling through the desserts in search of food and water. The extend of deprivation, the hunger and thurst they had to endure was enormous.
At lastthe physican who later wrote this report heard of the story and tried to find them.
In a very bad shape he could bring them at last in a camp and the improvement of their health was a joy at first for all who had been on their track .
For Yari and Yathunka however dreampaths could not be substituted with homes built of concrete, all their roots cut.
Soon afterwards they both died in the camp.
This is a story of a gripping and brave deed to help an old couple.
It is a story of a lost lifestile and from our point of view a lost paradise.
Was it really good to bring them out of their well known environment?
An account of the search for, and rescue of, the last of the Aboriginal people still leading a traditional, nomadic life in the Gibson desert of Western Australia. Thus ended a lifestyle that stretched back for more than 30,000 years.
The story of Warri and Yatungka, the last of the Mandildjara people to remain in the Western Gibson Desert region of Western Australia.