The Fog Lifts On A Beautiful Day

1964 was an eventful year. The Beatles visited Australia. And I was born. My mother insists that I was there, but I don’t remember a thing. The story goes that I nearly killed her, I was born very quickly. The doctor arrived after the fact, apologise for missing my arrival. ” I tried to make it I really did. ” He was wearing an overcoat over his jammies.
The first ten years of my life were spent in a wonderful dream. I believed that the world is a wonderful place filled with fantastic characters. There was the man-sized rabbit that delivered chocolate eggs, (obviously laid by chocolate hens), at Easter. There was the fairy who would buy your teeth from you when they fell out. And, of course, there was the favourite of them all. The jolly fat guy whose entire life was devoted to the manufacture and delivery of presents to you at Christmas. All these characters filled my early years with a wondrous sense of magic and it is probably that belief that I miss the most.
From Canterbury hospital I went to our home in Peakhurst where I am told we lived for another three and a half years. ( When you’re that young the halves are as important as the years.) My memories of Peakhurst are sketchy at best, with a few weird and disjointed flashes of the kid next door Mark and our dog whom my older sister and I would torture for his dog biscuits.
My earliest vivid memory was just before I was three and a half. My father took me to see our new house which was nearing completion in the new bushland suburb of St Ives, just North of Sydney. I have a vivid recollection of the man in the kitchen putting a set of drawers in. The house was split level on the ground floor with a stairway up to the second storey. There were four bedrooms and the main bathroom. My parents had a little en-suite. All the bedrooms had built in wardrobes for hiding in and there was a really cool laundry chute that my brother and sister would climb up and down occasionally over the next seven years or so. Strangely, I regret now that I never dared to try the claustrophobic route to the downstairs laundry.


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