Awkward town names

Intercourse PennsylvaniaI recently drove over Awkward Gully, then Purgatory Creek. A while later came Skeleton Creek. The names made me laugh (what can I say, there wasn’t much else around to keep me amused). Once upon a time, they must have been called those for a reason. But why? For the former, I’d like to think that it wasn’t the gully itself that was awkward, but that it was named after an embarrassing event that occurred there. “Let’s sit down, Astrid, I have something to tell you. I… I love you. Passionately. I want you to deflower you right here in this gully.” “Well actually, Arthur, I asked you here today to let you know that I’m your biological mother. Good day.”

While I’m on the topic of ‘Things I Saw While Driving Between Tamworth and Byron Bay’, I would like to say to the tourism committees of small towns everywhere: Look, we know you have a tough job coming up with a motto that encapsulates what you’re about while also attracting tourists. But really, WHAT THE HELL? To wit:

“Find yourself in… Uralla”

So I get that they’re alluding to the spiritual sense of “finding yourself”. But as this is emblazoned across a sign not so far out of this small town, it comes across as more of a geographical help than anything. “Keep going along this road and you’ll find yourself in… Uralla”.  Was it a statement of fact… or a warning?

“First town of the North Coast: Grafton”

Well, it’s technically correct, I suppose, so full marks for geographical relevance. The excitement factor, however, is nil. Minus nil, if possible.

“Byron Bay Arts & Industrial Estate – a uniquely Byron experience”

As my passenger at the time mentioned: “Yes, sheds are a uniquely Byron experience”. Well put, passenger, well put.

“Worth a visit: Mayfield”

Okay, this wasn’t on my trip, but damn if it doesn’t make me smile every time I see it. WHY is it worth a visit? Well, it’s really not, as any Novocastrian will tell you; there is literally NOTHING of interest there (apart from a fish and chip shop oh-so-humorously called ‘Happy Hookers’, and you can only find that interesting for a VERY brief period of time).

The encouragement award goes to the Guyra caravan park, by the way – a sign proudly proclaims that it’s the caravan park at the highest altitude in Australia. I guess in the crowded tourism park market, you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do to get those travellers in…

This guest post was brought to you by Her Hilariousness, Literate Chicken. For those of you not au fait with satirical poultry, Literate Chicken is none other than Miss Melanie Mahoney. Isn’t she the greatest?! Check out her blog here

Comments
One Response to “Awkward town names”
  1. Tristan says:

    A personal favourite (with bumper sticker evidence) is Urunga – <emWhere the rivers meet the sea. Emphasis is on the plural. It’s all the more unmissable.

    Great read.

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