I finished a book, I actually finished a book! My bedside table is stacked high with partially completed tomes; I’m always picking up something new to start and if I don’t stop this habit soon I’ll be able to open my own partially read (one-and-half hand?) book store.
The book, a great Christmas present from Rae, was a history of The West Gate Bridge, written in 1978 just after it opened. A fascinating story of this incredible and tragic project, one I am indebted to everyday I drive to work. It got me wondering when the tolls were lifted – they were supposed to last for 40 years before the bridge was returned to the State, debt free. I knew the tolls had been lifted much earlier than this, but had no idea when so I turned to Google.
And Google let me down. I couldn’t find the answer, or a clue, anywhere. Eventually I resorted to Yahoo – and there was the answer, four entries down. The tolls were lifted after 6 years, making the year 1984 (you can see the toll signs at the Melbourne Museum in their fantastic Melbourne – Stories From A City exhibition).
My faith in Google is now shaken, if they can’t tell me this maybe they’re holding out on me on other things. What’s the world coming to when you can’t trust Google? Maybe the answer lies in one of those many unfished books.
5 Replies to “A Book Finished And A Faith Shaken”
You should add that factoid to the Wikipedia entry.
Next time i’m down that way I will have to check out the museum!
Sounds like a strange but interesting read
I remember when I first got my license back in ’84 and one of the first things that I did was drive over the WestGate Bridge, and tolls were finishing up, I’m happy to say now I can tell my kids that I paid a toll by hand on the Westgate! I know thrilling LOL, but its nice to be part of history, and when it collapsed, I remember that too………one of my first early memories.
What was the name of the book and the author? I can’t find a book about the history of the westgate anywhere and I am trying to find one for a friend.
The book is ‘West Gate’ by Bill Hitchins, Outback Press, 1979. ISBN 0 86888 226 7.