Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

A FEW months ago we gave the “green thumbs” in charge of landscaping du­ties at the State Gov­ern­ment build­ing on the corner of Stan­ley and Walker streets a spray about the dead fig trees in the tubs on the build­ing’s veranda. They figs had been do­ing a great im­i­ta­tion of dead for years. They died most likely for want of wa­ter and from nico­tine poi­son­ing caused by the mil­lions of cig­gies stubbed out in them by hard­work­ing pub­lic ser­vants who have found cause to loi­ter there ever since the build­ing went up in the mid1980s. I put my own hand up and plead guilty as I worked out of this build­ing for a few years in the 80s. At the time I had an abid­ing ad­dic­tion to Drum tobacco and Win­nie Blues. But, back then we could puff away in the of­fice to our heart’s con­tent and the whole world, lit­er­ally, was our ash­tray. We flicked them here, we flicked them there, we flicked them ev­ery­where. How­ever, I don’t rule out the fig trees be­ing col­lat­eral dam­age from those care­free times. And al­though I have no di­rect ev­i­dence, I’m sure those heinous Com­mon­wealth pub­lic ser­vants from just across the road were not averse to us­ing the tubs in which the figs were planted as uri­nals when re­turn­ing from their three and four- hour lunches at the old Lowth’s Ho­tel. ( If they weren’t at Lowth’s you’d find the “Feds” at the Great North­ern or at Jim and Marg An­stey’s New­mar­ket Ho­tel. The good news is that the figs ( not the Feds) have been re­placed with desert roses. It’s early days, but let’s hope they make it.

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