Australia conjures images of sea and surf, but it’s in the sun and sand of its red centre desert that I discover the country’s spiritual heart. Uluru (Ayers Rock), along with Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), has been part of the traditional belief system of Australia’s first people. The ochre-tinted inselberg stands tall in the vast arid landscape, linking the country’s indigenous Aboriginal past to our present and the future.
As the plane begins its descent to the Connellan airport, a glimpse of Uluru’s famous silhouette evokes a sense of awe. The winter sun on the tarmac is comforting as unhurried passengers make their way into the small airport to a pleasant ‘Palya’ or welcome. A relief from the intense security screenings one has to endure at most airports in our post-9/11 world.