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At Home with Strays, Strayers and Stayers single work   autobiography  
Issue Details: First known date: 2018... 2018 At Home with Strays, Strayers and Stayers
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

‘Straylya’. That's how I can remember first hearing it – stray-lya – as if it was a place filled with strays. I wasn’t aware at that very young age of paying too much attention to the origins of the country’s name. But later I recall a growing sense of satisfaction that it suited the place my small family had decided to make their home. My parents had been dedicated strayers well before they got here. They’d ridden motorbikes all across Scotland and the north of England in the postwar years. Proud owners of a BSA Golden Flash, they were members of a club that set off each weekend to rumble through the Royal Mile and head out beyond the Edinburgh boundary lines, into the moorlands and hills and glens. When I came along there was a sidecar added, and I became the club’s baby. Lots of pictures of me being passed around – all rugged up with fat, wind-chafed cheeks – to members posing proudly by bikes lined up against backgrounds of fairly grim grey landscapes. Looking back at those old photos now, I realise the club was training me in the art of straying.

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Griffith Review Who We Are no. 61 2018 14211968 2018 periodical issue

    'Australia was the last continent to experience the transformation wrought by new settlers arriving to make it their own. For centuries, explorers had set forth to discover lands which others already called home, but that were conquered and renamed by European seafarers. When King George III dispatched the First Fleet to Sydney in 1787, to accommodate prisoners no longer welcome in the newly independent United States, the history of British settlement (and Indigenous displacement) commenced. Reduced to a percentage on the scale of human occupation of this land, the past two hundred and thirty years would disappear – a number so small it would not even register as a rounding error. But over this short time it has become home to millions who together have forged a new Australian identity.' (Editorial introduction)

    pg. 92-96
Last amended 3 Dec 2018 11:55:19