My Huckleberry Finn Life & the Aboriginal Wurundjeri People.

Back when I was one, going on two, we moved house to a new part of town that set a pattern for the rest of my life.


From a small single fronted house in an inner Melbourne suburb, considered in those days to be a slum (today being remodelled as trendy town houses selling for big bucks), we moved a bit further out to a Californian bungalow house in a wilderness area where the Darebin Creek met the Yarra River, known as Fairy Hills with street names like Elfin Street and Fairy Street.

Incredibly, this was also suburbia and still only a short distance from the heart of the CBD.

Footbridge over a billabong beside the creek

At the same time every year, I was told, a certain rare bird flew from Japan to the Darebin Creek wilderness, the only location outside Japan that this bird has ever been seen.

For 15 years my favourite pastime was to sit by the creek, like Huck Finn, in the peace of Nature gazing into the clear water rippling over rocky beds and walking alone along the rough bush tracks.

They were my first lessons in life learned living close to Nature and the ancient unspoiled wilderness land of the aborigine. For tens of thousands of years it was used as a food and tool source sustainably by the Wurundjeri people.

And then leaving that natural environment in my mid teens to live in a government housing estate of rows of little boxes was a bit of a shock.

I had imagined the rest of the world was like Fairy Hills and I slowly came to realise that it wasn’t.

Big lesson.

Big shock.

(More next time.)


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