On The Death Of My Only Brother. May He Rest In Peace.
Over Seventy Years Of Sibling Stories To Tell — Where Do I Begin?
I have been absent from Medium for about a month, dealing with a family tragedy. The sudden unexpected death of my only brother.
These are my fondest memories of Richard, not in any consecutive order, because these images come to my mind in random flashes.
One thing we both disliked was plucking the chooks for Sunday dinners in Big Bell — “whoever eats the most chook eats the most feathers” was our motto.
We thought that father got off light, because all he had to do was chop off its head and then tie it to the long clothesline, rather than chasing it around the back yard. Maybe we misjudged Bluey’s contribution.
Roaming In The Bush — Unhindered And Unsupervised
We spent hours roaming around in the bush. Once, we went looking for mushrooms in the middle of summer. In later years, we realised our parents had set us up, even to the point of making sure we had a billy can, to bring them home.
Like the time they sent us off looking for white camels! Tsk tsk. While they got to have an unsupervised Sunday morning lie in.
Cooking In The Bush and At Home.
We made stone forts and roasted potatoes in their jackets in hot coals. We sat around smoking Mum’s prized cane lounge, a few canes at a time, while we waited for the spuds to cook. Eventually she did notice!
Richard’s bread and butter puddings were legendary, as were his father’s rice puddings.
Two Weeks Together Alone On Holiday — Twice.
Richard came to stay with me, twice, while our Dad was in care in Banksia Park, and us just being mates was wonderful.
Visiting, driving, talking, gardening, walking. Together 24/7 for two weeks at a time and loving it. We found we had a lot in common, more than we had realised. It was a time of special caring for me, too.