This is about a great home based business with reptiles – Warning: do not try this at home yourself!

It was nice to see in the Gold Coast Bulletin, a daily paper where I live, a story about the self-styled Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin receiving a special award from the official Australian Government tourism agency, Tourism Australia, which agency hasn’t yet got around to putting a news release about the award on its website. Although Steve’s Australia Zoo is further north, on the Sunshine Coast, the Gold Coast Bulletin presumbly reckoned that it was a good Queensland story.

While Steve has his critics, I regard him as a genuine guy who is committed to making a positive difference in the world. And there is no doubting his enthusiasm for Australia and Queensland, his home state since he was about 8 years old.

I also like the fact that, building on the hard work of his parents, he has created a major tourist attraction and worked very hard for it. I’ve seen him interviewed on television by a very savvy Australian interviewer who would have been quite capable of verbally skewering him if he had figured him to be a phony, and Steve came across, for me, as very much a “what you see is what you get” kind of bloke.

So how is this a home based business story? Well it started with his parents and Steve living in a caravan (trailer) on four acres. There are a lot more acres now and aaccording to the Australia Zoo website (click on The Good Old Days tab in the left sidebar menu), Steve and his wife and daughter still live in the house that Steve’s father built on the property.

No doubt some Australian sophisticates cringe at Steve’s trademark antics with crocodiles and his liberal use of the word ‘Crikey!’ which he has almost trademarked. But I remember when “Crikey” was a very commonly used word in Australia and while I’m a bit bothered that he and Stephen Mayne have somewhat appropriated the word, I have to say I like the fact that they and no doubt a few others are doing their bit to keep it as part of the living language.

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