Friday, July 13, 2012


I always loved to hear wee stories from mum about life on their farm before I arrived in their lives.  One in particular was when she spoke of a bush that grows in our southwest called boronia.  It has a highly scented brown and yellow flower which most people love although it can be a little overpowering if you get too much of it in a closed room.

Mum and dad used to supplement their income by picking boronia, packing it carefully and putting in on rail at the Narrikup siding to go to Perth where it would be sold on street corners for 6d or 1/- a bunch (that is sixpence or one shilling).  The part of the story that really intrigued me was that the boronia bushes grew so high that mum and dad could ride through the bush and actually pick the flowers while still in the saddle.  I would imagine with the amount of clearing that has taken place since the 1920s that there is very little wild boronia left now.

I can still remember the beautiful smell when the first boronia arrived in the city each year and there would be baskets of it everywhere with bunches ready for sale.  I think it did give me hay fever but I still couldn't resist buying a bunch every now and again.

Another funny story mum would tell is once again about she and dad riding through the bush when they came upon this racehorse goanna (they can grow up to 3 feet long or more).  This particular goanna was apparently startled by the sound of the horses so it decided to run up one of the front legs of the horse dad was riding.  Mum said she had never seen dad move so the goanna went up one side of the horse dad leapt off the other side.  It is well know that these goannas will run up the nearest object if they are startled or frightened and in this case the closest object was dad's horse.   Locally they are called 'bungarras' which may be a derivative of the name aborigines have for them.

As far as I remember my mum and dad never swore apart from dad saying damn, blast or similar and mum not at all although I must admit she would say 'jam and plaster' which I realised when I was older was her way of saying 'damn and blast it!!'.  I mentioned to mum one day about dad never swearing and she said "but you never heard him when the cows wouldn't go through the paddock gate, he would turn the air blue".  That to me shows what a polite person my dad was and how considerate he was of others.  A truly wonderful man.

As other of mum's stories come to mind I will share them with you and hope you will find something to enjoy or laugh at in some of them.

No comments:

Post a Comment