Redcliffe Pier

Monday, February 16, 2015

HAPPY DAYS

 At last I have a little time to continue with "My Story" posts. Any new readers who are not familiar with this series of posts they are on my sidebar under "My Story" or you can click on the label "My Story". I self published a book of the first posts about my family making a new life in Australia. I hope to publish a sequel about my life after that. The books are mainly for my children and grandchildren but are available to anyone from blurb.

Anyway on with the story:
Last time you may remember, that in Dec 1968, I had just gone on leave to Australia from Papua/New Guinea after falling in love again after a few disastrous affairs. This time I was cautious but hopeful things would turn out well. I was worried that when I returned to P/NG, the charming Swiss boy would have found someone else. However, there were hopeful signs as he had written to me every week that I was away.

Bill had kept himself busy with his hobby of making 16mm movies. Here he was filming a 'sing sing' a traditional celebration of dancing and singing by the natives nationals


Bill also went crocodile pig shooting while I was away.

When I arrived back in PT Moresby, there was a very happy Swiss boy waiting for me at the airport. He drove me home and we chattered non stop. However, it was back to preparing the next term's school work for me, before we could play. 

Soon we were having fun on weekends, going on picnics and drives to a river, the dam or a beach. One day we joined in a gumi race (rubber raft race), where participants used their blow up lilos to negotiate the rapids. Actually, I only watched and took photos. It looked a bit dangerous to me. We often went out to dinner, although, I asked him home for dinner one night and burned the chips. He said, "Its okay, I like them that way best." (Yeah, yeah. He was just being nice.)

One balmy, tropical evening we went to dinner at the Mandarin Restaurant for dinner. After a delicious Chinese meal Bill asked, ''How do you feel about marrying a Wog?"  (an Anglo/Australian slang term referring to ethnic European immigrants. It is a derogatory term in England but in Australia it has become a jocular nickname like Pom, Yank and Kiwi). My heart skipped a beat. Was this a proposal or a question about what I thought about it?  I guessed it was a proposal. I was surprised because we had only known each other for four months and two of those I had been on leave in Australia. I answered, "I'll think about it." (How dumb was that answer?) But after seeing the look of disappointment on his boyish face and thinking we could be a good team despite our different backgrounds. I said, "Yes, I could marry a Wog." I was very happy.

One day we went to the Post Office, which was near the wharf and we saw a ship unloading cars. We went to take a closer look just for something to do. The cars were brand new MGB's sparkling in the sun as they dangled from the cranes. Bill said, " I would love one of those!" 'Me too."I agreed. We both had a car, which was not in good shape. Mine had been in a smash and Bill's had been in a flood so we decided to trade them in on one of these beauties. We raced off to the dealer and asked to buy one of the MG's that we saw being unloaded. He sadly explained that all of them were already sold but he would order us another one. So we had to wait and wait for the next shipment.

 The day finally arrived. Wow! How happy we were. It was a beautiful car an MGBGT. Bill dropped me off at school and then drove it to work. ('Nogat wok' is pidgin English for 'No Vacancies' or 'no got work')

We drove to the beach and the drive in movies. We had loads of fun in that car.

 Relaxing in the shade at Ela Beach.

 We went to the end of term, Korobosea School Staff Dinner. Not long now before the big day. We had decided get married in May1969, just six months after we met. Our friends said we were mad and that it would never last. The question was where should we get married? In Switzerland with Bill's parents, in Sydney Australia with my parents or in Papua/New Guinea with no parents?

36 comments:

  1. Your haven't changed much, mate.
    Except for the now snow white hair, you look pretty much the same.
    Sorry William mate, you do look a LOT different.
    And everything has a "Happy Continuous Existence".
    Take a bow.
    Cheers
    Colin

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  2. Well, first of all I just read Colin's comment and it made me laugh. This is a lovely story and I also loved your photos. You were and still are a lovely couple. I am looking forward to the next installment :)

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  3. I am a sucker for love stories ... an enjoyable read.

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  4. I can see a Datsun in one of your photos. What was the model called? Bluebird? It was so different to our native Holden and Falcon, yet a pretty good car. Mgs of any description were horrid to work on.

    Your crisp recollections are amazing and no doubt aided by photos so wisely took at the time.

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  5. Trying to decipher my own comment. Took? Taken at the time. MG cars were horrid to work on and the engine space was so cramped.

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  6. Lovely romance with a wonderful story. Photos are good and of course the MG too.

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  7. At last! I have been waiting till we got to this part of the story.

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  8. Oh wow, Bill was quite the "man" in the producer role and also as Croc Dundee on top of the car. He 's a handsome guy and I'm glad you married him. (the naysayers were WRONG weren't they??) I also love the Nogat Wok. Wondered about the sign (guessing it was no vacancies) and then you explained. What an exotic life you led! Thanks for sharing. xx

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  9. Diane, I loved reading your romance story.. You and Bill are a cute couple! The MG car is cool! Have a happy week!

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  10. Oh boy, your Bill was a really handsom guy. I can imagine you were very lucky to find him and together you look such a happy couple.

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  11. Oh your children and grandchildren, great grandchildren etc.. etc. are so lucky to have such an adventurous talented writer women in their lives who is very wise to leave them such a incredible gift. Oh Your stories are truly amazing. Hug B

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  12. Oh how I love all those photos and you two are just the cutest pair EVER! Love the little car and how fun that must have been to speed around in!

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  13. Ah young love is hard to fight :). Oh my what a very attractive couple you made Diane.

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  14. i love all these photos from the past, they tell a story with no words needed. bob and i married after 5 months . just like yours it has stand the test of time...i felt the excitment of the new car...the boots Bill has on while sitting on the car, made me smile, bob just told me yesterday he used to wear those hunting ...

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  15. Your stories are amazing - thank you so much for taking us on this journey with you :)

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  16. You left us with a cliff hanger! NO FAIR! ;)

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  17. What a great story! The last photo has you looking very happy and in love. Such a beautiful smile! Looking forward to the rest of the story...

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  18. I believe your book is interesting.one day I would like to read it

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  19. You two look so cute and happy together. How wonderful that you have proven everyone wrong and are still traveling along together.

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  20. When I get some money I want to buy your book as I love your stories and the way you write

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  21. Diane.
    Have you looked at certain 62/63 photos of a certain Dennis Burrell from ASOPA
    days??? The resemblance of him and Bill of Switzerland is remarkable.
    Cheers
    Colin

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  22. Exciting times. I do believe short engagements are best.

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  23. I enjoy a good love story and yours is just that. You were (and probably still are) people who know what they want. Can't wait for the next episode.

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  24. I love this part of your story. You two have obviously proved all those nay-sayers to be wrong. You two actually set a good example -- Betsy and I were married six months after we met.

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  25. It's a very romantic story and you both look so fresh faced and in love. I don't know where you got married but I'll take a guess it was in Sydney.

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  26. A wonderful love story with a happy end ! We were even worse, we didn't wait 4 months, we met one evening in August 68 and stayed together from that evening on. We married one year later in October 69 ! Everybody thought we were crazy !

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  27. Arrggghhh! I didn't want the story to end. :)
    A lovely couple then and now!

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  28. I love these stories you share about your life, Diane! What a nice keepsake for your children and grandchildren to have. Both you and Bill look so young when you were married! I see your daughters in your face. I had to smile because my friends told me the same about my immigrant husband--that our marriage would not last and now we are together over 40 years later!

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  29. Thats a good story!

    My 10 year old climbed the mountain as well!!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  30. OH how I enjoy reading 'your story'.... Love the pictures of you and Bill. You two have had a wonderful life together... I wish that George and I had have met when we were young.. Oh Well...

    Also enjoyed both of your blogs posts from Sidney.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  31. Aw Diane this is such a special chapter in your life that you've shared with us. I love all the photos and the MG too - wow!
    You do a good cliffhanger too ;D)

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  32. Awesome proposal!!! If I was to give advice, I'd say get married in Pt Moresby with NO parents! I'll wait & see if that's what you did!

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  33. Fun to get back to your story! This is so sweet. My hubby and I were married in May 1969 also...after "going together" a year and a half, but we were a little younger. I was 17 when we said our vows, and he was 19, both just out of high school!

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  34. What a whirlwind romance. The man I married also had an MGBGT!

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