VERTREK = Departure........

I’m pleased that yet another book has just been published telling what the experience of migrating from the Netherlands to Australia was like.
The MORE the better, in my opinion and I repeat: the political spin regarding BUILDING up the population to ‘defend’ the country, to cover the far more likely reason: ‘factory fodder’, required to make use of investment in the Australian economy, was “not nice”.
I shall repeat until all those cows come home that, as after midnight we were shown into the ‘well-used’ ex-army room, having climbed down from the steam train which had brought us from Port Phillip Bay to a paddock outside Bonegilla Migrant camp, my mother CRIED: “Have I left my beautiful apartment in Gouda, for THIS?”…

  • Re-building their lives aged 39, after having been in the Hunger Winte

I paid homage to Amsterdam

Visited it on a school excursion when I was in 5th grade, in Gouda, in 1955. Visited it when my cousin who worked there took my children and me to the Anna Frank’s House in much more recent years. And also when I was in the Netherlands about two years ago.
My daughter then showed me around because she’d been an exchange student at UvA from her university, here, in Sydney.
While I was born in Gouda and lived there until 1956 and it is number one in my affection, of course I love Amsterdam too.

"Old memories. New excitements." - It happened 29 Sept., 2011.

The Dutch Australian Cultural Centre was there, demonstrating the fun that CAN be had, without needing any electricity!
Shuffleboards are used for “Sjoelen” as the Dutch word for shuffleboard, is sjoelbak.
Willoughby City Council organised an afternoon of: “Old memories. New excitements” demonstrating the way different cultures play games. A lot of fun was had by young and old! Some possibly enjoying this “old” game for the first time.

The DACC can be found, through the Dutch shop, in Smithfield.

Ozcloggie is afraid of the stairs.

Lost in The Rocks, last night, I looked down the “Windmill Steps” and grabbed the railing, feeling slightly dizzy but, by now, running late and it had to be done.
I obviously looked distressed enough to have some kind people, who’d told me where the stairs were, drive around to the street below, to ensure that I’d landed safely, in Hickson Road.
I had flashbacks to looking down the steps, below the Notre Dame, in December, 1969, and to a bit of video, which I edited for a friend, in which her mother was daunted by stairs, in more recent years (Also in Paris) but most of all to my grandmother, in about 1949, who could not climb the two snow-covered steps to the entrance of the railway station in The Hague, and took me, then aged about 6?, on the tram to the other station, just because s…

We both came aged about 12. We both became teachers. (At Mascot P.S..)

Another group of Japanese students, from Sydney University was doing a tour of some locations, in Sydney’s outer western suburbs, where something could be learnt about the ethnic input into the Australian community. The Dutch Shop, ( " ‘tWinkeltje’ " ) was, once again part of that excursion.
It was Wednesday, 29 December, and as, now, the chairman of the D.A.C.C., I felt responsible for welcoming them to the section of Holland House, behind the Dutch Shop, where the Dutch Australian Cultural Centre is located.
With that ‘duty’ on my mind, I opened up the D.A.C.C., and settled down to play my piano accordion, wondering what I could tell them, when they’d come at 1:15 p.m…
Two ladies walked in. They’d spoken to the previous chairman, now treasurer of the D.A.C.C., and believed that we mi…

"But you can't!!" (......go back).

Months of quiet, calm retirement and, SUDDENLY, too much to do!
37 years I taught primary school children.
I repeat that so often now.
In my fifth year of teaching it all came to a first plateau!
At Riverstone P.S., my first appointment, 1964-1966, I’d found my feet. The executives there had got used to my Dutch-ways of doing things and come to appreciate my input in art, dance, music, etc.. (A pity that soccer wasn’t the go there. It would have been perfect.)
The next and fourth year ( 9 hours’ drive away from home, in a one-teacher-school ) was like a baptism of fire; like walking on hot coals.
Sydney was too far away and I awoke in fright. The kids were great but the majority of the towns-folk were not impressed.
There was no running water. No electricity and three times, I changed accom…

"The school children-- Australia-wide- must be taught the truth about the events that preceded settlement in 1788 instead of the myths concocted by the colonisers."

I question that statement, on page 13, of the current Holland Focus magazine, that “The school children— Australia-wide- must be taught the truth about the events that preceded settlement in 1788 instead of the myths concocted by the colonisers.”
School children – Australia-wide- must be taught how to SEEK OUT the FACTS and be taught the skills to assess the validity of the information found.
“De beste stuurlui staan aan wal,” ( it says on a Delft blue tile that my aunt brought to me, here in Sydney, from Gouda, in 1974.) (Literally translated: The best navigators stand on the shore. They think they know it all but couldn’t actually carry it out themselves.)
Let teachers teach pupils SKILLS.
When shock-jocks first came on air, in Sydney, many, many years ago (Dear old Eric Baume. …

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