Cracow, QLD, February 2024
I met my wife Nicky here, about 23 years ago. She was managing the pub and I was travelling up north to the Cape with my boss. I sacrificed a coastal lifestyle when I moved here, but also living in high density areas with lots of people, which is not that much of a sacrifice. There's no sense of community or anything in the cities anymore. It wasn't somewhere we wanted to bring the kids up. 
The town is only here because of gold. That's the only reason that Cracow was established. You and I could peg out a lease and mine for gold, and see how we’d go. Families ended up moving up here, and it was a town with 4,500 people at one time.
We've got a good strong community. It's peaceful. It's quiet. It's not like everyone's spying on everyone else. People's personal space is respected. But if something happens and people need help, the community all pulls together.
Even though the mine is predominantly fly in, fly out, drive in, drive out, they employ a couple of locals, and they are supportive of the community. They look after us. The guys come down from the mine camp to the pub a couple of nights a week, have a few beers. It’s not like the old days. They don't stay until midnight and play up. 
But if the gold prices dropped tomorrow and they shut the mine down tomorrow afternoon, it wouldn't make that huge a difference to the town. People from the properties would still come in, say g’day, catch up. On Friday nights, there's 40, 50 people here, playing pool and talking. There's no pokies or anything like that. So it's all conversation, everyone's got to talk to each other. Old school stuff, I love it.
If the pub shut, it would change the whole dynamics of the town. It’s the only privately run business in town, apart from the mine, and it’s one of the best fucking pubs in the country. 
It's a hub. It's important. It's important to the community.
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