Thursday, 18 March 2010

The term of my natural life

I have lived most of my life in South Australia and I am glad to have done so. There is always a modicum of melancholy at this time of years because it was on March 18th 1967 that we arrived on the SS Orsova (pictured) at Outer Harbour. We did not get to see much of Adelaide, our family who had come to meet us were in much haste to get back to Whyalla where they had work commitments etc.

Those of you who have made the journey from Adelaide to Whyalla will know that you travel from the relative lushness of the city to the edge of the desert. It was for us a great adventure, though the culture shock was probably greater than you imagine. Looking back it felt more like moving into the American mid-west than Britain down-under. It was remote, culturally sparse, and educationally harsh.

All but one of my siblings has gravitated to Adelaide, and I often think how fortunate we are to live in such a temperate and stable place. Here, in the middle of a State election campaign, you get the impression that even if the worst happens and your opponents win, life will still go on much the same.

Although in SA we bemoan all sorts of things, and we are mocked ceaselessly by those who live on the Eastern seaboard for being small, quiet and perhaps a little inward looking; I suspect that most of us quite like that. And in fact I sometimes think we like to keep the secret and certainly do not want Adelaide to become like Sydney or Melbourne, so we almost conspire to not promote ourselves too much.

It would be good to be included on some of the national tours a bit more often. It's a pity that plays, musicians, art and so on seem to manage to go to Perth but find that Adelaide is hard to do.

As for the rest, I am glad to have discovered the secret.

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