A photo of your hometown. Day 12

Did you have to do marching practice when you were at school? We did. Left, left, left right left. But it didn’t matter how many times they marched us around the oval yelling at us, we were never going to be in time.

Mind you these were also the times when we had to stand at ease during assembly every morning until we had to suddenly jump to ATTENTION, when a teacher yelled at us to do so. Snap our skinny little legs together,  arms straight by our sides. Then we’d file into class where we’d all face a picture of the queen and sing God Save The Queen.

I’m sure my kids think I’m lying when I tell them that. Mind you it was a lot easier remembering the words to God Save The Queen than it is the lyrics of Advance Australia Fair. It’s almost painful sitting through a school assembly these days and listening to the children mumble and fumble their way through that one.

But back to the marching. We always had marching practice before school sports carnivals. Athletics and swimming. Because there were points up for grabs for the best team marching effort. Our teams were named after rivers. I was in Castlereagh. We were red. I think the others were Namoi, Bogan and Macquarie. Who’d want to be in Bogan these days. Maybe they changed it.

We’d also practice our marching before the ANZAC day march. Because back then school kids marched at the ANZAC service. These days they only seem to do it under threat of having their mobile phone taken away or something.

This leads me to a photo of your hometown. Well it was something like that. I think it was a photo of the town you live in but I’d need a helicopter to do that. And anyway I’ve been sorting through photos and I found these one’s of Papa’s which are much nicer.

So here we have the ANZAC parade. As you can see we had very wide streets. I’ve never seen a town with such wide streets. And usually pretty dry. Although not always as you can see in the bottom few photos. Same main street. I wasn’t around for the flood. The bottom photo is Nan and Papa’s street. They lived right down the end on the right.

Hometown Main Street



Nan and Papa's Street


21 thoughts on “A photo of your hometown. Day 12

  1. Ah, the good old days. They must have been the same throughout country Australia. We used to even stand while they played “God Save the Queen” at the pictures. Then roll Maltesers along the floor if the picture was boring. Well, some did. I always ate mine.

    • Oh wow. I think I must have missed that. But then again we didn’t have pictures. We had to drive to the next town and go to the drive in.
      Ha – I never know what the point of rolling maltesters and jaffas was. Seems like a waste to me.

  2. We didn’t have to march, thank dog, but we had the President’s Physical Fitness Awards program in the spring. All of us scrawny, nerdy kids were forced to run, jump, climb ropes, throw baseballs and just humiliate ourselves in general before our classmates. For our pains we got these stupid certificates saying we had completed the program, while the big athletic kids got ribbons and medals. It made me hate the words “physical fitness” and for years afterwards I cut gym classes even in college and took up smoking just to make my gym teacher mad.

    But you guys lost me on the maltesters and jaffas. Those were candies, I take it?

    • Lol – sounds like something Chairman Mao would have implemented. I would have liked that as long as there was no gymnastics involved. I was always terrified of all that equipment. And doing somersaults, I always thought I was going to break my neck doing them.

      Yes candies. But we call them lollies. Standard movie watching fodder here. Maltesers are good – malt balls covered in chocolate, jaffas are bad – hard chocolate ball covered in a hard orange flavoured red shell. nasty.

  3. That is so interesting. We had “March Past” in school too (in India)..and EVERYTHING you wrote (except perhaps the “God save the queen” (Thank God for independance) applies to us as well. The entire group would be in time to the Left-Right chant, EXCEPT one, and that one would jar out so much.
    Brought back memories, thank you.

    • Ha, so small children the world over are made to march. I was thinking about how the marching gets all messed up by people not being able to know their left from their right or for whatever reason and I was thinking it’s similar to when they used to make you sing those stupid songs at school like Row Row Row Your Boat. Where they split the class into three or four groups and one group sets off singing and then the next group starts about ten seconds later, then the next, etc, etc and by the end of the song it’s just a bloody disaster.

  4. *nods* yep, we had to practice our marching – lots of practice to compete for the biggest trophy on offer at the school’s athletics carnival. I was also red – in Blaxland.
    *nods* – again – at the school assemblies and singing God Save The Queen (I bet your school had the same standard issue photo of Her Maj that ours had!)

    PS..love the pics – few familiar sights there!!

    • Yeah, I bet the old township there hasn’t changed much since I left.
      Our photo’s of Liz had thick gold frames on them. She must have gone out that way when she visited Australia back then because I remember some kids got to go and stand on the side of a road somewhere for hours to watch her drive past. One of my friends fainted. I don’t think it was from excitement either.

  5. The only marching I ever did was in band in college. I was pretty good at it as long as I didn’t have to play at the same time. One or the other – not both.

    President’s Physical Fitness Test – hated it, especially that horrendous bent arm hang where you had to climb the wall ladder and hang on the offset bar at the top in a half-chin-up posture until you broke. Less than 30 seconds was a fail. I never made it past 19. Like these arms are meant to hold this big ass up four feet off the ground… puh-LEASE!

    We used to recite the Pledge of Allegiance (modified Joe McCarthy Version) every day. And we did walk down the halls in single file lines. That’s about the best we managed.

    • Lol, well I’m thinking if it was a marching band there would have been some marching and playing going on at the same time.
      I can’t believe this Presidents Fitness Test business. I hope he had to do it as well.

  6. You had to march??? I have never heard of such a thing. Wow. I love the pictures. They are timeless. I must admit, when you said you were not around for the flood, I thought you were making an age joke (the Noah flood in the Bible). LOL!!!

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