“Thanks for coming and keeping the story alive”, I said to Ian and Lee at the end of their broadcast of ABC Radio’s “Australia All Over” from Coraki. “By and large people in Sydney have forgotten about the floods, and their eyes glaze over when I mention them”, I added.
Coraki is a town of about 1,000 people about half an hour’s drive from Lismore. Nowhere nearly as badly damaged by the floods as Lismore was, but the town was still heavily impacted, along with other neighbouring towns such as Woodburn.
Though the program has its critics, “Australia All Over” remains an important program for ABC Radio, reaching a broad audience, and bringing the nation “together” on a Sunday morning.
“Macca” is at his best when he’s with a live audience. I’m sure his “showbiz appeal” goes back to his days as a musician. Later, he worked as a journalist, before taking over “Australia All Over”.
I first saw Macca before a live audience when he came to Renmark, my first ABC station. And today he was down the road from home, keeping the Northern Rivers flood stories alive, which made me very happy.