Ship name / Flight number: Iberia
Arrival date: 05/05/1961
I arrived on the Iberia in 1961… sunburnt, broke, tired and disillusioned.
I had been beat up on the trip out by another BBM lad… but fortunately I had a half-brother whom I’d never met before collect me from the boat and take me to his place.
He got me a job with Fleming’s Groceries and I worked there for some months until I realised ends were not meeting financially as my lodgings in Sydney gobbled up almost all my wages.
I returned to BBM at Cowpasture Road Farm and spent a few weeks there before being sent to Dirnaseer, near Temora, NSW. This was an eye opener to a city lad – hard work seven days rain hail or heat.
There was an elderly lady running the farm and she was a very hard worker, so I just had to buckle down and get on with it. After twelve months I found myself at Temora Rail Station with a pound note and a suitcase full of dirty washing!
Do I get the train to Sydney with no job prospects or try my luck in this tiny country town?
For three days I slept in a church until I got caught sleeping in the clergy gowns for warmth. The minister was fantastic, he took me home, fed me, and organised some better clothes for me.
I slept at their place for a few days until he found me a job and accommodation.
Life started to look up.
I lived in Temora for approximately nine years, met my first wife and had two children. And on top of that I purchased a little house on the edge of town.
That was 58 years ago. I am totally amazed at how my life has turned out. I am now retired, living on the coast and have remarried a lovely lady and we have eight children between us and eighteen grandchildren…
I am the happiest I have ever been and it’s all thanks to BBM’s perseverance with me and pure luck.
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