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I am a homebody. I don’t do much traveling, though I would love to. Finances generally limit my trips to the Midwest. I’ve been overseas twice–the last time was nearly 10 years ago, so I’d like to try it again soon!

This lack of worldwide travel doesn’t depress me too much because I live in an area where I meet people from around the country, and sometimes around the world. Mankato is a university town, which means that people are constantly coming into the region from various places. This infuses the area with a lot of diversity.

At a local art fair a couple of weeks ago, I happened upon a guy with a great accent so of course I was intrigued and had to ask a lot of questions! The reporter in me will never go away; I practically got Vinni’s life story with a half an hour!

Vinni lives in Adelaide, Australia, and naturally I asked him about cemeteries there. I also asked him to send some pictures my way, and here’s what he gave me:

Australia 1Vinni says this is the gravestone of his great-grandfather, who died in 1925.

Australia 2This is another shot of the cemetery, with his great-grandfather’s monument the tallest one there (the one with the cross on top).

Notice the slabs covering the graves. Vinni says this is common in Australia. I have rarely seen this in the States. But when I was recently in Madelia for a book event, I stopped at a local country cemetery and there were two graves that were covered with a slab. I don’t know much about this practice so I will be investigating further.

The cemetery in the pictures above, known as Black Hill (Old) Cemetery, is abandoned. Vinni and his family went there to do some repairs to his great-grandfather’s stone, which had eroded due to weather conditions and rabbits.

This link shows the cemetery’s location. Nearby is a quarry where Black Hill Granite is mined. The beautiful black granite is used worldwide, including for gravestones.

Thanks for bringing a bit of Australia to my blog, Vinni! If it weren’t for a 24-hour travel time, I might stop by! These photos are striking; obviously much different than the cemeteries I’m familiar with in southern Minnesota, which are lush and hilly and green. I would guess  you might find similar cemeteries in western Texas or New Mexico or Arizona, but since I’ve never been there I don’t know for sure.

Does anyone want to contribute to my travel fund so I can find out? LOL!