I always love hearing the voices of magpies singing in the bush, and it was no different during my Stage 13 walk.
Today, a follower has made a comment about the connection between blackberry pies and magpies, and then went on to make the connection with the Australian Rules League football match being played tonight in northern Tasmania. One of the teams happens to be ‘my team’ (Collingwood known as the magpies) but unfortunately I can’t be in the stadium to cheer them to a win.
The website http://www.afltas.com.au/hawthorn-v-collingwood-launceston-2015-nab-challenge-fixture/ reports that ‘The 2015 NAB Challenge will kick off with a match between Hawthorn and Collingwood at Aurora Stadium on Thursday, February 26 … Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said “Hawthorn are back-to-back premiers and this will be their first outing for 2015. On top of that we have another tier-one side in Collingwood, playing their first match at Aurora Stadium and first ever official match in Tasmania. It’s also a fantastic way to kick of the celebrations for the 150th year of football in Tasmania and we would like to acknowledge the role of AFL Tasmania CEO Scott Wade in working with the AFL to bring Collingwood to Tasmania.”
The Collingwood team have the largest paid up membership of any of the AFL teams and members usually fill the large mainland stadiums when games are played. In so doing, when the Collingwood team plays, the crowds throng and any match is expected to provide a good revenue stream on the gate. So, I believe this is the reason the League has never let Collingwood play in Tasmania before, because our island population is so small, our stadiums are smaller by comparison and the entry gate takings are less. The fact that my magpies are coming to Tassie is a softening of the old approach. Admittedly tonight’s game is not part of the main roster and is part of a warm up series before the main games start later in March. But the team is here and probably in the early hours of warming up for the big game. ” ‘Carn the ‘pies!”
I have loved the magpie birds all my life. Perhaps that is why I chose Collingwood to be ‘my team’ when I was a child. Followers will have seen me mention the song of the magpies on many stages of my walk along the Derwent River.