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Expand view Topic review: Pat Ritter. Books

Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:47 pm

'The Drover' - Page 4:

Mervyn Barrington, his uncle, cleared bore drains for a living, using draft horses to tow a delver. A delver is steel constructed ‘A’ frame appliance with wooden wings on either side. Up to 14 draft horses towed the delver through the bore drains to clear silt or rubbish and allow the water to flow from the bore head along miles of drain to water stock.
From an early age Harry possessed an ‘eye’ for a horse. Shape, conformation, colour, head shape, distance between the eyes, sensibility and most important the horse’s personality.
There were rogues and also well behaved horses, much like humans. He reckoned when he harnessed his uncle’s draft horses and hitched them behind the delver he spoke in their language; he knew each by name and had them eat from the palm of his hand to do what he wanted them to do.
His hands guided the draft horses through miles of bore drain, clearing roly-poly bur which blocked the water flow. If the roly-poly was not cleared from the bore drain, the drain became blocked and water overflowed from the drain out across the land, thereby stopping the water flow to the end of the bore drain.
He learned young in life, hard work never killed anyone.
In between working for his uncle, he helped his father in droving cattle or sheep, mainly as the horse tailer. His job as a horse tailer, to ensure all of the horses were shod regularly; feed and watered and to load and unload the pack saddles from the packhorses. Pack saddles were used to carry most of their equipment and food. Another chore he did was feed and take care of the dogs; at times he attended to ten dogs.
His father taught him how to work from dawn until dusk without complaint and to do the job right in the first place so that way there were no mistakes and the job need not be done again.
After Harry worked for his father and uncle for a couple of years he was earnest to go out on his own as a drover to prove he could do it. By this time he’d acquired three horses, one to ride and two to carry gear in the pack saddles. With his three dogs and horses; he had his first droving plant.
His first droving contract actually came by accident or opportunity.
One day while he was helping his father move one thousand sheep from a property west of St George to Dirranbandi, a truck overturned on the side of the roadway not far from where they were droving. The cattle crate on the overturned truck held six bulls that escaped from the crate. Instinctively, Harry whistled his dogs and in no time stopped the bulls from escape.
‘Who are you?’ The truck driver called to Harry.
‘Harry Williams.’ The shy 13 year old lad replied.
‘Obviously you know a thing or two about cattle – how about taking these bulls to Bollon for me. I’ll pay you.’
‘Oh yeah alright,’ his face had a grin from ear to ear, ‘I’d better ask me Dad first though’. His father agreed.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:01 pm

'The Drover' - Page 3:

Was he Harry Dale from the poem? They had the same nickname. At the moment he heard the poem, he saw in his mind’s eye, his life, to learn the craft of droving.
Harry was born the 5th child of 11 children; 3 boys and 8 girls. His family were drovers from the top of their broad brim hats down to their R M William boots and loved what they did.
Harry’s father worked as a drover in the Dirranbandi, St George and Bollon areas in southwest Queensland where he lived a simple life.
As soon as Harry discovered what he wanted to do, his world changed in one day.
It happened when the Principal at Dirranbandi State School, which Harry attended, contacted Harry’s father to speak with him about Harry.
At their meeting in his office, the Principal said to Harry’s father, ‘Mr Williams, Harry isn’t doing well at school and I think for the boy’s future he should go with you.’ His father agreed.
Harry hated school and couldn’t see the sense in going each day when he could be out working with his horses and dogs. His father survived through life without an education and he would do the same. I’ll learn by listening to older men who’d been there and done it, it’ll be better than going to school, he always joked.
It was difficult at times when he needed to read, because he didn’t learn how to read or write only to sign his name in a scribble fashion he could only understand. Apart from having little or no education he possessed an immeasurable sixth sense to understand what he needed to do and to do the task to the best of his ability. He prided himself for being as honest as the day is long and abided to this honesty for the remainder of his life.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Wed Jun 21, 2017 10:55 pm

'The Drover' - Page 2:

Harry took a moment and thought about the time his daughter Claire helped him stop the cattle from stampeding. She was brave, very brave; and at such a tender age. He felt so lucky to have a family he loved and cherished.

Harold Clarence Williams was born in the country town of Dirranbandi in 1930; his dream began when he was 10 years old after hearing the poem Ballad of a Drover recited around the camp fire. At an early age his father nicknamed him ‘Harry’ for short; he was known by that name for the remainder of his life.

‘Ballad of the Drover’
By
Henry Lawson

Across the stony ridges, across the rolling plain,
Young Harry Dale, the drover, comes riding home again.
And well his stock-horse bears him, and light of heart is he,
And stoutly his old packhorse is trotting by his knee.
Up Queensland way with cattle he’s travelled regions vast,
And many months have vanished since home-folks saw him last.
He hums a song of someone he hopes to marry soon,
And hobble-chains and camp-ware keep jingling to the tune.
Beyond the hazy dado against the lower skies
And yon blue line of ranges the station homestead lies.
And thitherward the drover jogs through the lazy noon,
While hobble-chains and camp-ware are jingling to a tune.
An hour has filled the heavens with storm-clouds inky black;
At times the lightning trickles around the drover’s track;
But Harry pushes onward, his horses’ strength he tries,
In hope to reach the river before the flood shall rise.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Tue Jun 20, 2017 10:40 pm

'The Drover' - Page 1:

Chapter 1

Claire woke in the night startled by the storm and lightning strike. She sprung from her swag, dressed and threw a saddle on her horse, fastened the surcingle all in one movement.
Her instincts took over to saddle her horse and help ring the cattle before they stampeded. Excitement of the chase exploded inside her mind and body, not giving time to think what a nine year old child was about to do.
Rain soaked her clothes through to her skin. Her hat stuck to her head fastened only by a thin rawhide strap across her forehead to stop it from blowing off.
Swinging into the saddle she rode like demons possessed her small body, to help her father. The thrill of the chase ran through her veins, each muscle in her nine year old arms and legs strained to their limits, the mental toughness to help her father not being able to sight him caused her to wonder where he was. She needed to find him. Riding her horse at full gallop, lightning striking around them, cattle running in all directions out of control.
Through the faint vision of rain and wind, she saw a silhouette of a horse and rider, riding like the wind to get in front of the leading bunch of cattle to ring them round so they slowed and stopped. The moment she saw the horse and rider she knew it was her father. She felt a deep love. She would do anything to make him proud of her.
With lightning flashing above her head and near to trees, thunder exploded, wind and rain lashed her face, her hair streamed from beneath her hat; she rode on urging her horse into the chase. Without fear she jumped her horse across a log in the pathway and stretched her small body along its neck. She urged him forward to the front of the herd and came abreast with her father, his right arm out-stretched; she heard the familiar sound of a whip crack.
There was calm, the cattle stopped. With the final sound of a whip crack competing against the lightning and thunder, she rode up beside him. Claire thought her father was God, better than God; he could do anything just like God. She held him on top of a pedestal which reached for the sky and loved everything there was to love and would do anything to please him to earn his love and respect.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:33 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 119:
Todd stood walked to the same place his son had stood. He shook hands with his Member of Parliament. ‘Citizens of Cunnamulla, you all would agree when I say how glorious this Cunnamulla Railway Station is. How proud you all should be in the completion of this huge project. If not for this man, this grand railway station wouldn’t be possible. Todd, I congratulate you on completing this huge project.’ He shook Todd’s hand.
‘Before I officially open Cunnamulla Railway Station, I would like to say a few words to show how this man standing beside me has commenced another project in his life. Todd Carlson is not only a Chief Engineer, also Chairman of ‘The Great Artisan Water Basin’ Committee for this area.’ Silence fell across the crowd.
‘A couple of years ago I wrote to Todd asking him to form a committee to oversee the development of finding water in this region. With the assistance of his two committee members, Joseph Gibson and Nat Young, plus young Ryan Carlson these four citizens have discovered water in this region to help this country survive through one of the worst droughts in this country’s short history. I present to you the first Commissioner of Water and Resources appointed in Queensland, Mr Todd Carlson.’ Todd looked at his member of parliament shocked. Everyone cheered.
Voices in the crowd called out ‘Good on ya Todd.’
After the gathering quietened The Right Honourable Joseph Ryan, Esquire, MLA continued. ‘This is indeed a proud moment in the history of Cunnamulla. I now have the honour to proclaim the Cunnamulla Railway Station officially open.’ He drew back a curtain showing the official plaque of the opening.
1898 certainly became a great year for the Carlson family. Everyone celebrated throughout the night. By the end of festivities Todd still couldn’t believe the position bestowed upon him as Commissioner of Water and Resources in Queensland plus Ryan receiving a government certificate for work he discovered. Everything was good in the Carlson family. What next.
THIS IS THE FINAL PAGE OF 'TILBAROO STATION'. IF YOU HAVE ENJOYED READING THIS BOOK PLEASE LEAVE A REVIEW ON THIS LINK: https://www.amazon.com/Tilbaroo-Station-Pat-…/…/ref=asap_bc…. THANK YOU.

Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:02 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 118:

‘Citizens of Cunnamulla. Thank you all for inviting me to officially open Cunnamulla Railway Station. Before I commit this honour would Ryan Carlson pleased join me.’
Ryan sat with his parents on the large front open veranda. His mother squeezed his hand looked Ryan in the eyes nodded. Ryan stood erect, his legs barely carrying him almost turning to jelly. His nerves on edge. He had no idea why he was being invited to stand beside such a distinguished gentleman. Approaching this person Joe put his hand out to shake Ryan’s hand guided him to stand beside him.
‘Citizens of Cunnamulla. This is indeed a great moment for the township of Cunnamulla in more ways than one. On my left is a young gentleman, eleven years of age, who without his skills in finding water in this area, this town would not become anything if not for this young man. I introduce Ryan Carlson, the Water Diviner.’ Everyone in the audience cheered clapped. Joe Gibson stood clapping loudly with a smile wide across his face.
‘Good on ya Ryan.’ Joe shouted above the crowd.
When the crowd quietened The Right Honourable Joseph Ryan, Esquire, MLA continued, ‘I’m proud to announce Ryan Carlson is awarded The Certificate of Cunnamulla Youth of the Year for discovering water in this area. Ryan, I congratulate you on your efforts.’ Ryan handed a framed certificate showing his reward for finding water in this dry portion of Australia. Tears of pride sprung into Ryan’s eyes. He nodded returned to sit beside his parents.
‘Next my duty here is to call upon Todd Carlson, Chief Engineer.’
Todd stood walked to the same place his son had stood. He shook hands with his Member of Parliament. ‘Citizens of Cunnamulla, you all would agree when I say how glorious this Cunnamulla Railway Station is. How proud you all should be in the completion of this huge project. If not for this man, this grand railway station wouldn’t be possible. Todd, I congratulate you on completing this huge project.’ He shook Todd’s hand.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Sat Jun 17, 2017 10:17 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 117:

Second stage to build a modern type railway station housing the staff, baggage area for passengers to collect their baggage after leaving the train, all undercover for the comfort of the passenger. Cunnamulla’s temperature at times reached one hundred and twenty degrees in the shade, compared with winter weather at times close to zero degrees. Front of the railway station to be constructed similar to homes built in the town with a large front open veranda, centre opening, columns spaced evenly along the front of the building to show a homestead type building. A separate goods shed built nearby along the track for the business people to easily access delivery of their goods.
Todd understood completely what he needed to do in the shortest time possible. His skills to organise, work with others to complete the project upper most in his mind. Perhaps the burning of the recently built railway station may have been a blessing in disguise to prove his worth as Chief Engineer. He would do the best job possible in the time required.
With October 1898 closing in only painting needed for the completion of the railway station. Todd’s job of completing this huge task completed on time.
‘Mel. I’m done.’ He expressed to his wife after showing her the results of his work in building the most modern railway station in the State.
‘I’m proud of what you’ve done Todd. Congratulations’.
On 10th October 1898, a huge gathering of Cunnamulla’s townsfolk stood in front of the railway station. Seated were distinguished guests, one in particular, The Right Honourable Joseph Ryan, Esquire, MLA who would officially open the railway station in honour of the citizens of Cunnamulla.
When time came to official open The Right Honourable Joseph Ryan Esquire, MLA stood in front of the crowd.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:49 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 116:

‘You want something to drink Todd?’ Melinda shouted when the two men approached the house.
‘Yes dear. Something strong for Sergeant Gray and myself. Nothing more we can do tonight.’ Todd shouted back.
Todd suffered enough with the powers-to-be in Brisbane so decided to write a letter to The Honourable Joseph Ryan Esquire, MLA, to seek his help in building a new railway station of the modern era, not some eye-sore. After venting his anger in writing he sealed the letter addressed to his Member of Parliament. Todd went over the heads of his department but didn’t care because in his mind’s eye the railway station which should make Cunnamulla proud with all passengers pleased to be at the end of their journey. Todd’s new plans he enclosed in the envelope.
Within two months Todd received from The Honourable Joseph Ryan Esquire, MLA, a letter written by his own hand explaining he received his request. After a meeting with Railway Department Management agreed to Todd’s plans of the new railway station with approval to proceed immediately. The deadline of October 1898 would still be the date required for the opening.
Todd’s enthusiasm reached heights he never thought possible. His mind focused. Material plus working gangs arrived, work immediately began. His plan to construct a huge steel cover across the double railway lines so when the train engine stopped each passenger decamped from their carriage undercover to step onto the platform.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Thu Jun 15, 2017 10:56 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 115:

‘Sorry for being so cranky Mel.’ Todd tried explaining to his wife frustrations of being unhappy with the completion of the railway station. ‘This is not what I wanted. Not the railway station in my vision. Some idiot in Brisbane probably doesn’t have a bloody clue where Cunnamulla is, so decided to plan a railway station without thinking about what the town needed.’ Todd explained pushing his fingers through his hair in frustration.
‘I’ll support you in everything you do Todd. Can’t you have the changes done to how you want them to be?’ Melinda didn’t want to interfere in her husband’s business.
‘I’ll work something else out.’ Todd told his wife.
Later in the night after going to bed Melinda awoke smelling smoke. ‘Wake up Todd. A fire.’ Melinda shouted to Todd late into the night. ‘I think the fire is at the railway station.’
Todd jumped from bed, ran to the rear door, ‘the railway station.’ Todd pulled on his trousers, shirt, boots, ran from the bedroom out of the house toward the railway station. Flames engulfed the whole building. People gathered trying to bucket water onto the flames to no avail.
‘Sergeant Gray.’ Todd called. The sergeant helped other citizens of the town bucket water onto the flames.
Sergeant Gray turned. Todd ran toward the fire. ‘Hold back Todd. I don’t think anything more can be done.’ His reply raspy. He coughed. ‘Must’ve gotten smoke into my lungs. Sorry Todd.’ Todd often met the sergeant when visited the railway station to speak about the progress of the building.
The building totally destroyed by fire. Whether to laugh or cry. Shock of the fire started to work on his mind. What should I do now? He pondered. ‘Nothing we can do here Sergeant Gray. Would you like to come to my home for refreshments?’ Todd asked. Sergeant Gray nodded followed Todd to his home.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:53 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 114:

‘Foods ready.’ Melinda called to everyone.
Everyone agreed after eating Daisy’s porcupine, yams and berries they didn’t require anything else except pudding. When the clock struck twelve everyone greeted 1898 New Year with laughter and cheers.
‘Happy New Year Darling.’ Joe wrapped his arms around Hannah kissed her on the lips. ‘Welcome to 1898.’ Joe smiled thought back to the same period previous year.
After everyone departed, Todd said to Melinda. ‘We have great friends. Don’t we.’ He kissed her. ‘Happy New Year. Welcome to 1898.’ Todd’s thoughts weren’t of building the railway station but enjoying a good night’s sleep to start 1898 with positive thoughts. This would become a turning point in his life and career.
1898 started great for Todd planning on building Cunnamulla Railway Station. His work with plans he couldn’t understand, sufficient material plus his imagination to create the best railway station. Todd’s determination to make this project work took up his every thought until completing the project.
Before February 1898 completed the brand, new railway station. Exactly to the plan required by Queensland Railway Department. Smaller compared to Charleville Railway Station. Todd not completely satisfied with the final building wanted changes made from the plans sent to him. His requests denied.
Ryan discovered more bores on Nat’s properties during the same period. Todd’s position in supervising the building of the railway station plus being Chairman of ‘The Great Artesian Water Basin Committee’ started to take effect on his health. His anger showed through frustration after the building completed of the railway station. Todd was not satisfied with the final project at times vented his anger on people around him.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Tue Jun 13, 2017 10:17 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 113:

Martha walked to Daisy cooking near the fire asked her. ‘You haven’t got another goanna? Have you?’ Martha wanted more goanna. Didn’t have enough at Christmas Dinner.
After giving Martha a warm hug, Daisy told her porcupine on the menu. Not goanna. Martha asked about the flavour. Daisy explained difference between goanna and porcupine one a wild animal eating ants and grubs. They chatted while Daisy tended to her cooking. This time Daisy cooked yams being one of their favourite aboriginal dishes together with berries she picked from bush trees earlier. ‘You’ll love these Martha. Yummy.’ Martha couldn't wait for her next wild animal. ‘Porcupine different to goanna. Mixed with yam, berries better.’ Daisy explained to her new friend.
‘Keith, how’re you liking your new job?’ Asked Joe standing with Nat and Todd.
‘Good working in sun hitting dogs into railway track.’ Keith tried to explain what he did.
‘You’re doing great Keith. The men who work with you enjoy your company especially work ethics.’ Todd explained.
‘What about you Todd. What big project have you in 1898?’ Nat asked sipping a beer.
‘Bloody huge. Building the new Cunnamulla Railway Station. Got to be finished by October for the opening. Should bring many new citizens to Cunnamulla.’ Todd didn’t want to explain too much about his project because honestly, he didn’t understand about this latest building. His knowledge of the project so far to build the plan sent to him which he wasn’t happy with.
‘What about your projects Nat? More bores on your properties.’ Todd asked.
‘Thanks to young Ryan and Desi, we’re going like one of your puffin billy trains. Honestly, I have no idea where we’d be without young Ryan finding water with the forky stick he carries with him. Todd, your son has a gift which has saved this country from the worst drought in history.’ Nat explained proud of Ryan’s achievements.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Mon Jun 12, 2017 10:06 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 112:

‘Have a good sleep, my love.’ Joe muttered returning to the swing on the front veranda. Relaxed pondered his thoughts about the day’s events. Ryan couldn’t have been happier when he received a pocket knife from Santa Claus. Desi’s face broke into a huge smile opening his present showing he received a similar gift, different colour.
Santa Claus didn’t forget the others either giving them useful presents. Keith asked Joe who Santa Claus was? Once Joe explained the theory around his mid-night visitor Keith understood thanked Joe for his present. Everyone enjoyed themselves so much by the end of the day’s festivities no-one wanted to leave. Eventually, all returned to their homes.
With the home finished at ‘Tilbaroo Station’ Joe had time off until beginning of 1898 before starting work with Nat at ‘Kahmoo Station’. Most of the shearing sheds completed with overhead shearing plants, only a couple to finish. Once Joe completed these tasks his plan to build a shearing shed on ‘Tilbaroo Station’. One day he wanted to raise his own sheep. His mind filled with an idea. His eyes closed decided to join his wife in their bed.

Melinda wanted to celebrate the beginning of 1898 New Year at their new home in Cunnamulla. Everyone accepted her invitation. When she spoke with Daisy, Melinda asked about another goanna. Daisy replied, ‘I’ll do better than catch a goanna. We find porcupine. Better eating than goanna.’
Everything began with the gathering of friends at Melinda, Todd, Ryan’s home. A huge fire roared in their back yard. Daisy, Keith, Desi, little Daisy arrived earlier to cook three porcupines they captured near where they lived at Coongoola Railway Siding. Daisy allowed the fire to die down to coals to prepare the animals for cooking. Martha and Nat arrived with Joe and Hannah.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Sun Jun 11, 2017 11:02 pm

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 111:

Chapter 16

By the end of the day after everyone left, Joe and Hannah sat on their swing holding hands. ‘Happy Anniversary’. Joe muttered to Hannah. Both totally exhausted, relieved their Christmas celebration went off so well.
‘Happy Anniversary to you also.’ Hannah replied. ‘This has been the best year of my life.’ She replied with delight. A huge smile spread across her face.
‘After today, who would’ve thought your mother and Daisy become friends?’ Joe placed his arms around Hannah, kissed her on the lips hugged her. ‘I’m the luckiest person in the world to have you as my wife. I love you Hannah Gibson with all my heart and soul.’
‘I love you Joseph Gibson. Always.’ Hannah kissed her husband. Her heart swelled with love for her husband and best friend.
‘Eating the goanna went over well. Don’t you think?’ Joe admitted. ‘A bit like chicken. Hard to tell the difference.’ Joe smiled visualising Daisy digging her fingers under the skin of the goanna, tearing away flesh place portions onto plates for the gathering to eat. Total surprise when Martha placed a small portion on her fork, raised the portion to her nose, sniffed, placed the portion into her mouth. She devoured the remainder from her fork asked for more.
‘Yes. Everyone loved our Christmas Dinner. Wonder what’ll happen next year.’ Hannah finished. Her eyes closed. She leaned against Joe’s shoulder. Sleep overtook her thoughts. Joe stood, lifted his wife into his strong arms carried her to their bedroom. Taking her shoes off he folded the covers back from the bed placed her under the covers.
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Sun Jun 11, 2017 1:25 am

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 110:

Keith understands more about our country than anyone I’ve met. He’s now working on the railway thanks to Todd employing him settled his family into a fettler hut rather than living in their gunya down by the creek. Sorry about Martha’s beliefs but honestly Nat for Hannah’s sake can you speak with her so she understands they are our friends.’ Joe finished, his blood pressure rising. Today being his wedding anniversary plus Christmas Day he didn’t want any problems. He wanted the day to be joyful, relaxing.
‘I’ll have a word with her. Now what about a cuppa.’ Nat finished embarrassed about Martha’s misunderstanding of aboriginal people.
Whilst enjoying a cuppa Joe walked to the front veranda. ‘They’re here.’ Joe called to the others. Todd driving the sulky, Melinda, Ryan seated beside him. Keith, Daisy, Desi, Little Daisy in the back seat all waving as Todd stopped the sulky near the house.
‘Look what we got for Christmas Dinner.’ Called Ryan excited to show Joe. He lifted a goanna into the air with both arms. ‘Mr Whiteman and Desi killed the goanna on the way out here. Said we’re going to eat him for Christmas Dinner.’ Ryan jumped down from the sulky holding onto the dead goanna to show Joe.
Martha stood on the front veranda watching Ryan display the goanna to Joe. A huge smile of elation on his face. She placed her hand to her mouth to stop a scream. ‘I can’t do this.’ She cried. ‘Nat take me home please!’ She returned inside of the house. Nat followed her.
‘Martha. For crying out aloud, a goanna for Pete’s sake. You’ve seen plenty of them since you’ve lived in the bush.’ Nat tried to explain to his wife now seated at the kitchen table sobbing.
‘Yes.’ She sobbed. ‘I’ve never eaten one.’ Martha’s sobs lessened. She wiped her eyes.
‘You’re not the only one here Martha.’ Nat said in a stern voice to show his wife he meant business to behave herself in front of guests. She met Desi but never met his parents or sister. ‘These people are friends of Joe and Hannah. Show them respect you would if they were your friends.’ Nat left his wife to greet his friends.
‘They’ll never be my friends.’ Martha muttered to herself wiping tears from her eyes. She stood, rearranged her dress walked to the front veranda.
‘Mother. I’d like you to meet Daisy, Keith, Little Daisy. You already met Desi.’ Hannah introduced her friends to her mother.
Daisy stepped forward held out her hand, ‘I’m so pleased to meet you Mrs Young. Hannah and Desi have told me so much about you. Thank you for looking after my boy when he was at your place with young Ryan.’ Martha looked like a stunned mullet, her mouth opened. She didn’t want to shake Daisy’s hand but thought of Nat’s words - ‘These people are friends of Joe and Hannah. Show them respect you would if they were your friends.’. Martha shook hands with Daisy.
‘Can I build the fire to cook the goanna?’ Asked Ryan still holding the goanna.
‘I’ll be right with you. Show you what to do. Lovely to meet you Mrs Young. I’ll show these boys how to cook a goanna.’ Daisy smiled, returned to Ryan and Desi to help build a fire.
‘I’ll give you a hand.’ Hannah said excused herself from her mother walked with Daisy a short distance.
‘Put the goanna down here Ryan. Desi, help Ryan gather wood to build a fire. We cook this goanna in no time.’ Daisy commanded.
‘Can I show Ryan how I rub two sticks together to make fire?’ Desi asked his mother.
‘If you like. Don’t show off. Your father can help.’ Daisy finished.
‘What can I do?’ Hannah asked.
‘Just be here with me. I’ll show you how to cook a goanna.’ Daisy told Hannah. ‘I think your mother needs her space.’
‘Daisy. I’m so embarrassed about my mother. Try not to worry. Takes time for her to understand everything. Her mood will change. I hope.’ Hannah reassured her friend.
‘I certainly hope so Hannah.’ Daisy lay the goanna out straight on the ground. ‘Should be enough for all of us.’ She laughed. ‘We’re aboriginal Hannah. I’ve never been so happy with the help you and Melinda have given me since we settled in Cunnamulla. I’m truly blessed to have friends like you both. Melinda has taught me about money now Keith working. Our home is different to live in since all I’ve ever lived in is a gunya. Cleaning floors, washing clothes, cooking on a stove. Everything so different. But good. You and Melinda are my closest friends. Thank you.’ They both embraced. Martha stood on the front veranda in sight of her daughter hugging Daisy.
In no time Desi and Ryan had a roaring fire. Desi showed Ryan how to rub two sticks together to make a fire, aboriginal way of making fire.
‘You’re clever starting a fire rubbing two sticks together Desi. Can you show me how to do this one day?’ Ryan’s eyes almost popped from his head when Desi placed a stick on the ground surrounded by leaves. Placed a pointed stick into a hole of the first. Using both hands rotated the stick back forth in the hole to cause friction steadily blowing on the join until a fire began.
‘How you boys?’ Keith walked beside them. ‘Good job Desi. You finally learned how to light a fire with sticks.’ His father confessed proud his son used the aboriginal way to light a fire.
With the fire now roaring into life the boys stood back placing more sticks onto the roaring flames.
‘Let the fire settle boys. Wait for the coals. I’ll throw the goanna onto the coals to cook. Won’t take long.’ Daisy interrupted. Daisy cleaned the goanna before placing the reptile onto the coals to cook. ‘Should be done in about fifteen minutes.’ She told Hannah.
‘We better set the table for Christmas Dinner.’ Hannah expressed to her friend.
They joined the others at the newly made table and stools. Hannah placed table cloths along the table. Set knives, forks, spoons at each place. She placed the children at one end with the adults along each side. Nat sat at the head of the table.
By the time the goanna taken up by Daisy placed on the table everything else in readiness to celebrate Christmas Dinner. Hannah asked her father to open celebrations with grace.
‘Dear Father in Heaven, bless this food we are about to partake. Bless our friends, family gathered around this table especially our new friends. Merry Christmas everyone.’ Nat shook hands with Todd, Keith, Joe. Kissed the women and children to wish them his greetings for Christmas.
Martha hesitated to wish her aboriginal friends a Merry Christmas however relented when her husband gave her an evil look. She wrapped her arms around Daisy whispered, ‘I’m sorry.’
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Re: Pat Ritter. Books

Post by patritter » Fri Jun 09, 2017 5:00 am

'Tilbaroo Station' - Page 109:
‘Nothing about money. Daisy look after money after we come to town. Mr Meston explained money to Daisy. She keeps money.’ Keith didn’t want anything to do with money.
‘I’ll explain your wages to Melinda. She will work out with Daisy what to do. We’d better finish this table and chairs before Christmas otherwise we’ll be sitting on the ground.’ Todd smiled.
By the end of the day a huge long wooden table finished placed under the gum tree. Four stools either side of the table, two on either end. Everything looked perfect.
Christmas morning Hannah rose early to start cooking. By early morning first guests arrived.
‘Merry Christmas Mother, Pa.’ Hannah greeted her parents when they stopped at the front of the house.
‘This place is beautiful.’ Martha looked at her daughter’s new home. She wrapped her arms around her daughter’s shoulders. ‘Merry Christmas to you too.’
‘Merry Christmas to you both. I’ll take care of your horse Nat.’ Joe arrived to greet his parents-in-law.
‘I’ll give you a hand. You did a great job here Joe. Congratulations.’ Joe unharnessed the horse letting him graze by the trees. ‘Can I ask you a question Joe?’ Nat asked.
‘Of course you can Nat.’ Joe surprised by his father-in-law’s request.
‘Is your aboriginal friends coming to Christmas Dinner?’ Nat asked in a soft voice.
‘Of course they are. Keith, Daisy, Desi, little Daisy. Why?’ Joe couldn’t understand why Nat asked the question.
‘This is embarrassing. Martha can’t understand why we need to mix with aboriginals. I’ve tried to tell her they are the same as we are but she wouldn’t understand.’ Nat tried to explain without causing embarrassment to his wife.
‘I’m sorry Martha doesn’t accept aboriginals. They have been in this country long before we white people have been.
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