Right Choice... Wrong
In 1963 I had an argument with my then girlfriend (no names
given). I thought I had been caught out "two timing"
and, so out of frustration, I told her I was going to join my
brother and emigrate to New Zealand. She said, "Well
go!". That is not what I wanted to hear!
Anyway, I carried out my threat and applied for New Zealand as a
tobacco picker in a place called Motuaka in the South Island and I
was accepted. After a few medical examinations, things went quiet. I
got over my girlfriend and started courting a new girl. Then, would
you believe it, my sailing orders came through. I was to report to
Southampton within two weeks to catch the Southern Cross
Straightaway, I said to dad, " I'm not going".
He said I was. I said, "I can't go because I haven't paid
the twenty pound fare". (In those days, it was 10
pounds to Australia and 20 pounds to New Zealand). He said it was
too late because he had already gone to Canterbury and paid it! I
was scared and thought my dad wanted rid off me even though it was
the last time I saw him.
The journey involved six weeks at sea. I adopted two elderly
sisters on board who one I called Mum and the other Auntie. Mum
would wash my clothes and Auntie ironed, I had it made :-)
Bob on a New Zealand Beach
Looking back, it was one of the best things my had done for
me. The funny thing was I went back to England a couple of years ago
and met up with my old girlfriend and found out I had NOT been
caught two timing. The reason she had broken up with me was because
I kept going on about New Zealand and she thought she was holding me
back. So, for 40 years, I have had guilty thoughts!
I must admit, leaving home with no telephone, internet or emails
in those days was pretty lonely for the first six months but I got
through it and thank my dad for his future plans for me.
Note: Bob met his wife Pam in New Zealand and, after a few
holidays on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland (Australia), the family
relocated to Oz... by buying a home in the attractive resort of
Mooloolaba. Bob features Mooloolaba in our "Home in
Australia" section... Click