“Hey remember back in the 90’s when you crushed badly on Suzi?” Matthew said from the passenger seat the following morning.

We, actually I, had been called out early the morning after our truck washing effort and Matthew decided to come with me as there was so little to do at my humble little abode apparently. Truth was I knew Matthew really just wanted to spend time with his wonderful sister.

“Well she was a hell of a babe, and she had a wonderful set of pipes on her, so it’s hardly surprising. However I do think it was you that was crushing on the poor girl, not I.”

We were taking about Suzi DeMarchi lead singer of the band Baby Animals and she was a good looking women who sung some of the best females fronted Oz Rock that there was, few have come close to matching her since as well. I didn’t really have a crush on her but I appreciated both the way she looked and the way she sang and the band’s music can still be heard pumping out of The Beast’s stereo system occasionally.

“You were the one who insisted that we go an see the band all eight times!” Matthew replied.

“Key words there being “the band”.” I said taking my hand off the steering wheel for a few seconds to mimic the quotations around the two important words. Don’t worry I was being relatively safe, we were driving slow, there was no traffic and we were on a straight stretch of road. So don’t worry about the hands off the wheel, focus on the story!

“We both know it was all about perving on Suzi, there is no point hiding it.”

“Did you wake up and decide to be annoying today? Or did it just happen that way?”I asked politely.

“A bit defensive aren’t you?” Matthew asked in response.

“Defensive would be throwing you out of a moving vehicle and leaving you there.”

“That’s not defensive, that’s downright violent!” Matthew wasn’t overly concerned because even he knew I wouldn’t remove my hands from the steering wheel for long enough to remove him from the Beast.

“At least I’d be driving in peace!”

“At least I’m not trying to re-write history!”

“Re-writing history? You really have lost it haven’t you? The hot sun up here has been melting your little brain hasn’t it?” He was lucky I was being so polite, my put downs could have been so much worse!

“That doesn’t say much for the girl that has lived here for more years than she is game to count in case it reveals her age. How melted must your brain be?”

That comment was a bit rude. I’m not afraid to reveal my age to people, I have lived in Halls Creek a long time and if asked I do have to think about the answer but I know exactly how old I am. I am….”So why the suddenly conversation about lost loves that would never have been in the first place even if you were an ugly millionaire who could play guitar mildly well?” I decided to get the topic back on track instead of all the insulting banter we seemed so good at,

“Oh, is that a hidden compliment that I’m not as ugly as him?” Matthew’s voice was full of sarcasm. “Yes. Yes, I think it was. That was a compliment towards me from my dearest ever sister.”

“Yes, yes, now cut it with the Dean worship and tell me why we are talking about Suze?”

“No reason really, I was just singing one of the songs in my head and I wondered if you remembered how you crushed on her!”

“We are not going to start this again!” I said.

“Nah, I guess not, but you gotta admit…Oww fuck!” Matthew bounced upwards as we left the road a little faster than was needed and the seat bounce sent him towards the roof. He didn’t quite hit the roof, a bit taller and he would have, but it was still enough of a shock to make him fill the cabin of my pristine old girl with profanity and rudeness. “…What did you do that for?” I said nothing so he went back to his little speech. “You gotta admit Suze was good looking.”

“And she’s not now? Is she too old for you or something?” I asked.

We bumped along the dirt road at just over thirty kilometres per hour, it was a rough dirt road that wasn’t used by too many people but I knew would save about forty minutes on our trip compared to the bitumen.

“She’s still alright, but she was ruined by Nuno.” Matthew said with a smile.

I knew he was talking about the Nuno Bettencourt, guitarist for the band Extreme, good guitarist but never ever good enough for our Suze! Whether he was a catalyst in the Baby Animals splitting up or not I don’t know but we’ve always blamed him for it.

“So once she dumped Nuno you wouldn’t have given her a shot if she came and begged you?” I asked.

It was really was good just having a casual yak with my brother. Although we’d done a few trips since his arrival we hadn’t really just “chatted”. We’d hit a few subjects, like family, friends and the weather but we hadn’t really just sat down and talked about nothing in particular and chatting about a band we both once liked definitely fitted that bill.

“Well, I wouldn’t have kicked her out of bed for farting. That’s for sure!” Matthew replied. It was a saying as old as the hills we were driving on but I knew that’s all it was.

“And that’s pretty much what you did the first night we met her wasn’t it?” I asked.

Previous Outback Rescue story here.