After spending a couple of pleasant years renting in Auckland Street, North Perth, came the time to find somewhere else to live as the owners of the house were selling and I imagine perhaps mum and dad couldn't afford to buy it. This was a shame as it was a really nice house and is still standing today.
We found another very nice house at 37 Coronation Street (also in North Perth) and only a kilometre or so from the one in Auckland Street. In fact Coronation Street is almost a continuation of Auckland Street. You just have to cross Scarborough Beach Road to get from one street to the other.
This new rental home was owned by a Mrs Jukes who lived next door with her grown son John. They were very good landlords and there were some very friendly neighbours in the street as well which was great.
I'd not found any friends when living in previously rented houses but I immediately became friends with 3 girls living in Coronation Street. They all attended a local catholic school and knew each other very well but during school holidays and after school and on weekends we became quite inseparable. In those days games played were simple ones as there was only radio or gramophone records to entertain otherwise. We played skippy by tying one end of the rope to the front fence, or hopscotch where we drew the game on the asphalt footpaths with chalk. Simple games they may have been but quite energetic which I imagine kept us all quite fit and healthy. Good exercise and fresh air always two good ingredients for youngsters.
It was while living here that Mum decided I was to leave the catholic school in East Perth was had been attending for over years and would attend Perth College in Mount Lawley. It nearly broke my heart to have to leave Vic Square but I had no choice.
There was however a big interruption to me starting at Perth College. I've mentioned I'd had health problems for a few years and it was at the end of January, 1944 when my appendix burst. The doctor knew I was very ill but still had no idea what was wrong until suddenly the pain stopped and he then realised something had to be done immediately. He rang for an ambulance and off I was transported to St John of God Hospital in Subiaco. Incidentally I shared the ambulance with the older brother of one of my friends. He we were told afterwards was suffering from scarlet fever (an infectious disease) and was probably on his way to the infectious diseases hospital in Shenton Park. As it was warm time and ambulances would have been scarce we shared and that was that.
I think I've spoken before of my appendicitis so won't go into detail suffice to say an excellent surgeon was found to do an emergency operation. He found the problem and after 4 weeks in hospital I was allowed home but not allowed to attend school until after the May holidays were over. Mum and dad tutored me as much as they could during the time I was at home but subjects like algebra, geometry, French and German etc were subjects I'd not taken before so a lot of catching up to do.
I never enjoyed my time at Perth College and must admit I didn't make a lot of effort except in the subjects I enjoyed. I eventually talked the folks into letting me attend a commercial college in the city and from there I got an excellent job after I had turned 15 and dad would allow me to leave school.
It would seem that dad was either tired of being a Rawleighs dealer or perhaps sales had dropped (I have found on a newspaper archive website where he had been advertising Rawleighs goods in our morning newspaper) but he arrived home one day and announced to mum and me that he had decided we would become shopkeepers. He had bought a shop (or was it rental, I don't really know..perhaps leased) in Swanbourne. This was a big move from the areas we had known well over the past 7 or 8 years after we moved to Perth from the farm and there would be a lot of travelling for me to go to school.
More of that next time........