In 1967 we set sail for Australia. I was 14. I think none of us, parents included, had any idea of what was really ahead of us.
Nevertheless we had an exotic trip aboard the SS Orsova of the P&O line. Visiting Gibraltar, then Port Said......just before the Suez Canal was closed we passed through, , bypassing Aden (where an 'incident' had occurred...a soldier I think having been shot.... ) we went to Djibouti on the horn of Africa. I remember being quite frightened as night fell and we were far away, and quite aware, for the first time ever, that we were white people on a black continent.
We went on to the exciting city of Bombay/Mumbai....we had never seen anything like it. Encapsulating as it does both the tensions of India and the still present tensions of the Raj with its great gateway to India.
The tension that India is both British and Indian.
In the midst of all this is poverty and porn....women in cages.....I had no conception of what this meant.
From there to Penang and the Temple of a thousand Buddhas and the Snake Temple (here). The stupid taxi driver gave my brother R a baby snake. At least we had the sense to realise that there was no way we would be bringing live reptiles into Australia.
A couple of day later we sailed into the more benign Singapore. A pleasant drive around and my father had clever photos taken of my mother sitting in his hand....I will try to find these and post them later.
Then we landed in Fremantle, sailed on to Adelaide (the Bight was rough!) and then we drove to Whyalla ......what a shock!