An archive piece found today during my post-flood sorting  – I was maybe 16 when I did this – marker pen and water colour I think. This was my first permanent abode in Australia, at 28 Ellena Street, Maryborough, Queensland. Odd, that the building is long gone, and this flimsy piece of paper still exists with its image. There is now a warehouse/shop in its place. My family and I lived there from 1962 for about 10 years. That was just after we arrived in Australia as “10 pound Poms” in October 1961. I also stayed there by myself in my early twenties, after my mother remarried and moved to Bundaberg. Had some great drunken parties and rock music jam sessions, mostly after midnight. The neighbours would have cheered when I left. I am a lovely mature person now of course, ha ha. Those were the days.

It was a big Old Queenslander house, about 100 years old even then. Remnants of horse stable flooring at the back of the yard. This was where I lived during my big (but incremental) initiation into the crazy world of becoming an Aussie. Beaten up and verbally abused at school (age 10) because I “talked funny.” Thank the gods for The Beatles, who hit the Australian airwaves in 1964. I lived only 10 miles from Liverpool, in England, so had a similar accent (but no accent is quite like pure Liverpudlian – or “Scouse accent as it is called). From then on, I became a small-time celebrity at school. My accent had suddenly become “cool.” Thank you, Beatles.

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