This lovely truckie handed out Valentine's Day flowers
Mystery rose man
MYSTERY surrounds the identity of a Good Samaritan truckie who handed out red roses at the height of the Townsville floods.
Many people assisted others during the once in a 100 year floods, including a young lady who had stopped beside Queens Park offering people bottles of water.
Numerous people pulled up to get a cool drink and these included those affected by the floods and volunteers who helped in evacuations and the subsequent clean up.
A gent driving an FL250 light rig pulled up near the lass and, much to her surprise, handed her a nice rose.
She didn't know him from a bar of soap but appreciated the gesture and managed to snap a picture for Spy.
Coincidentally it just happened to be on Valentine's Day.
Spy reckons he is a "blooming champion” and would love to have a yarn to him.
Praise for army during floods
ARMY personnel who worked tirelessly during and after the big Townsville floods were praised by thousands.
The soldiers helped evacuate residents as floodwaters rose around numerous suburbs and were credited with saving lives.
When the water flowed away they were active in cleaning up.
They were out in big numbers with white masks on to reduce the risk of disease.
In the aftermath some of the streets had damaged furniture, white goods and other household items stacked high on footpaths.
Mixed among them was sticky and smelly mud.
Their efforts were recognised by many, including a woman who approached 11 soldiers offering to buy them coffee from a nearby cafe.
Many of the soldiers are based at Townsville's giant Lavarack Barracks.
A FRIEND of Spy was travelling around Tasmania when he unexpectedly saw a family of pigs near the road.
So he snapped a picture which meandered its way to Spy.
"Here's the sow and her litter we saw on the road to Bay of Fires, north of St Helens. The pig family was well known to locals living in the area,” he said.
My mate was glad he didn't get to meet dad pig, especially if it was an angry boar.
Omen tip bonanza
TRUCKIES from different regions, who are also keen punters, often contact each other on social media and phone if they have a horse, trotter or greyhound they fancy.
A WA lad, who is into omen tips, saw footage of the north Queensland floods on the television news.
He managed to get Sunday, February 10 off and headed down to the pub for some relaxation where the flooding was a topic of conversation.
Somebody in the pub's TAB area mentioned that in race five at the Sunshine Coast there was a horse aptly named Rain's A Plenty.
He got on to truckie friends in NSW, Victoria and SA and told them this had to be an omen tip.
The horse duly won at juicy odds of 10-1 and they all collected after modest flutters.
Two state ambush
MANY truckies who are interviewed by Big Rigs correspondents tell them they often wondered if that would ever occur.
NSW driver Phillip Rook was one of the lucky drivers who was interviewed by two correspondents in different regions a month apart.
In January, Phillip, who drives for NSW Rural Fire Brigade, was loading trucks at Ulmarra to take to Sydney.
Then on February 10, Phillip was interviewed by our Tasmanian writer Jon Wallis at the Mood Food Roadhouse beside the Midlands Hwy which runs from Hobart to Launceston.
He was driving a Scania transporting another truck used during the Tassie bushfires and was taking it back to NSW.
Drivers like Phillip do a wonderful job.
A HANDFUL of drivers Spy spoke to in northern NSW claim that the town of Nimbin is the "hitchhiker capital of Australia”.
After a recent 11 day visit to NSW, I really can't dispute that opinion.
I saw about 10 hitchhikers during that period and seven of them were around Nimbin.
Most are locals who don't seem to have much trouble getting a lift.
But some were travellers wanting to check out Nimbin which certainly is a town with a difference.
Life jacket SOS
A DISABLED man who was stuck in a ground unit in North Queensland during the floods showed he still had a sense of humour despite his predicament.
"I would have given anything to have a life jacket as the water rose and as soon as the weather is clear I'll be going to buy one,” he told Spy.
The 30-year-old became a quadriplegic after a car accident on Yorke (Masig) Island in 2012 and is confined to a motorised wheelchair.
He was glowing in his praise for members of the Oak Valley Rural Fire Service from which volunteers turned up at his unit in a yellow truck offering to help in any way they could.
"They are real heroes,” he said.
TEN overseas tourists, mainly from Germany and Austria, enjoyed Aussie outback hospitality at remote Bluewater Springs Roadhouse during the flooding of North Queensland.
The roadhouse is 110km northeast of Charters Towers beside the Gregory Development Road, or what some refer to as the Lynd Hwy.
I spoke to owner of the past 13 years Geoff Bolster, who said the tourists got an insight into life Down Under.
"Many of the trucks which normally travel past here were parked at the Puma Gold City Roadhouse in Charters Towers waiting for the roads to open,” Geoff said.
The route, which is a vital link to the Atherton Tablelands and to Hughenden along the Hann Hwy, is 222km long and all but 8km has been widened in recent years.
THERE is a former long-time truckie who has been down on his luck lately after a spate of bad health.
The gent is aged in his 70s and used to drive interstate from Melbourne to Sydney and Adelaide.
Diagnosed with throat cancer a few years back, he had a voice box inserted through which he talks.
He enjoys nothing more than a couple of cold beers on a hot day but, being on a pension, he only can afford it once a week.
A visiting driver who stopped off at the country pub where he imbibes heard of his dilemma from a bar attendant.
So he pulled a nifty 50 from his wallet and told the pub worker to put that onto a bar tab for him.
As he was leaving and driving past the pub, the old-timer had gone to the bar and discovered what the fellow had done.
He lifted his cold schooner of amber fluid in the direction of the truckie who reckons he felt good to be able to help.