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When I was a kid back in the early days of the war , being the eldest I was  always in charge, I would take a group of      neighbours kids   all younger ,  and my brothers down to the little inlet of the tidal river for a swim.   Perhaps they wouldn't trust an 8 or 9 year old today but then , no problem. 


Vintage photo circa 1940 

Never an accident , no one got drowned . Altho I do remember one such trip and the tide was out … what did we do we slid around on the mud and all had a wonderful time until it came time to go home … how to clean up get rid of the mud... no water in the river except a long way off in the channel so we used a spring that some near neighbours used for their water supply. You can imagine the colour of the water by the time 6 or 7 young kids had washed off. You can also imagine the reaction of the close neighbour when they saw the  colour of the  spring!   Those kids and that Redhead   … I was not very popular.   But I didn't care and neither did the other kids. 

We were having fun.

vintage photo 1930's - kids playing in mud. Julia Creek 1937

My kids were the same, we have always lived in the Country among the cattle and sheep, they would go off with mates and goodness knows what they got up to.  If they came home with a bloody knee or a damaged elbow  as long as the shirt or dress was not too damaged all was okay.   Clean it up and with  the all purpose sticking plaster and everything was alright .  

Most holidays were at the beach  if it was the Christmas holidays , but if it was the end of Autumn  holidays it was usually the Lake and trout fishing.    My husband was a keen trout fisherman,  the   boat would be out and trolling we would go.  Rain,  hail or shine.   I can always remember the kids not too happy about this  …  sitting with a bucket over their heads and the rain coming down.   The looks on their faces were not "  what a lovely  holiday we are having , such fun".... 
I couldn't find anything with a kid fishing who had a bucket over their head - this was the best I could do. 
I know today the kids love going to Fun parks and  some of the fancy Gold Coast Amusements places  but I am sure the memories would be totally different from Shaydee and her siblings.       We also had a farmer friend who lived at a very popular beach area.   He had a Woolshed and the whole family and one of my brothers and his family would pack up and go and stay over Christmas and New Year.


Woolshed Coromandel New Zealand
Fishing ,    swimming and hunting for all sorts of things amongst the rocks.   Oysters too.  They all stayed in the  Woolshed in sleeping bags  but I was lucky there was a spare bed in the house and I stayed there.   Mothers privilege .   Then I could join them to " supervise "  the rest of the day.   Very fresh and  ready to go!



Today I imagine some people with the     dreadful way mortgages and jobs have  been lost , shortage of money,  perhaps the Woolshed would be very happily accepted as an alternative.   As long as  the restrictions  have had no awful impact on us we are probably not very aware that some people are in very dire straits and any roof over their heads would be  better than a tent.

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My concern is how much longer are we going to be treated so uncaringly,  things have to improve , NSW is   trying to get some order restored , it is time the  rest of Australia took a   leaf out of the new Premier's book.   Then maybe our kids can start enjoying holidays again. The holidays do not have to be expensive.   They can be fun with a little freedom and forgetting the rules.  

Let kids be kids.   Let them have some fun time and go back to having adventures playing in the mud and forget this rubbish about masks and social distancing.   Let them get dirty and ride their bikes and laugh and play.

Where did you get such a dirty face,
My darling dirty-faced child?
I got it from crawling along in the dirt
And biting two buttons off Jeremy's shirt.
I got it from chewing the roots of a rose
And digging for clams in the yard with my nose.
I got it from peeking into a dark cave
And painting myself like a Navajo brave.
I got it from playing with coal in the bin
And signing my name in cement with my chin.
I got if from rolling around on the rug
And giving the horrible dog a big hug.
I got it from finding a lost silver mine
And eating sweet blackberries right off the vine.
I got it from ice cream and wrestling and tears
And from having more fun than you've had in years.

Source: https://www.familyfriendpoems.com/poem/dirty-face-by-shel-silverstein
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