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Braided Channels of History Recording & Transcript - 42 (Raw)

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Narelle Trish Bronwen Julie Hornsey & BOB
IN 00:00:00 OUT 00:30:07
Trish FitzSimons
Griffith Film School
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19 June 2000
Timecode refers to tape 42_BC_SP Topics in Bold
Braided Channels of History Recording & Transcript - 42
Floods Ecology
Some water damage evident.
Copyright in individual works within this collection belongs to their authors or publishers. Recorded creative work created by permission of the copyright holder.
Bronwen Morrish Narelle Morrish
Interview of Narelle and Browen Morrish. Part 1 of 2. Some camera movements by operator (some accidental, some to trees). Generally good. No transcript from approx. 11minutes to end of recording.
part of:
Braided Channels of History Recording & Transcript - 42
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42_BC_SP_MORRISH-raw.txt — 8 KB

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                                    19 June 2000
                        Timecode refers to tape 42_BC_SP
                                    Topics in Bold
     TF = Trish NM = Narelle BM = Bronwen JH = Julie Hornsey & BOB
TF    I have no idea of your childhood but just sketch for me a little bit – I, were
      you born in this country?
NM    18:01:21:18     No. I was born in Lismore and um spent all my youth there
      until I decided to go nursing and did one year in Brisbane and then returned to
      Lismore. After I completed my nursing, I um was fascinated by the Psych
      Ward – Richmond Clinic that had just opened. And fortunately I was put, I
      was in that ward for a year or two when a psychologist just came along. And
      we moved –
TF    And that psychologist was Bob?
NM    That’s right. We moved to Melbourne and worked there for a while. And
      then slowly he crept back to the bush.
TF    And when you say ‘slowly’ he crept back to the bush, was Bob from this
NM    No. He’s from around Inglewood.
TF    I don’t know where that is.
JH    Trish, can I just stop there for one sec.
TF    Yep.
JH    I need to just get –
TF    - and I’m rolling too. So when you say Bob slowly crept back to the bush,
      how was it that you and he ended up in the Channel Country?
NM    18:02:40:12     Well, he was born um in Inglewood and raised on a property
      and I guess that had a fairly strong hold. Even though after that his schooling
      then went to uni, um I guess the bush part never left. So um we moved up to
      Winton and bought a place near Kynuna. We were there for 4½ years and
      then moved into the Channel Country in ’79.
TF    And so – I’ll come to you in a moment Bronwen – but for you um Narelle,
      was bush something that you were into as well.
NM   Um my grandparents were on a dairy farm so I guess that yeah, there’s – I’d
     seen a touch of bush before.
TF   This is really different then, I know that to come from Lismore um you know,
     little green valleys with little nooks and crags. This is pretty different. How
     did this, how did this landscape strike your eyes and your heart when you
     came here?
NM   18:03:44:10    Well unfortunately there were lots of drought seasons but the
     good ones in between, the good seasons, I guess that it’s so beautiful – the
     landscape. And the waters. The birds.
TF   So you were saying like at the moment it’s incredibly beautiful? Is this
     unusual for this land to look like this? Is this unusual?
NM   It is really. Yeah, because often it’s – with droughts, it’s often very soul
BM   About one in ten year.
TF   One in ten years is good like this?
BM   Yep. The rest is pretty bad.
TF   So how about you Bronwen? How did you come to the Channel Country?
BM   Um, through my parents. I’ve grown up here.
TF   So what would you say was your earliest memory?
BM   Flood/Childhood
     18:04:33:02    My earliest memory probably would have been um of the 1989
     flood.   I can remember standing on the um verandah of the Springfield
     homestead and just looking out at this great expanse of water. It was really
     beautiful. I can remember that. I must’ve been about three.
TF   And what else can you remember from very early?
BM   I can remember riding my pony Roaney. My strawberry roan horse and yeah.
     And just growing up on the station and –
TF   So what year were you born in?
BM   1985.
TF   And so for you Narelle, where does 1985 come in the kind of the cycle of
     seasons you’ve known?
NM   Channel Country/ Ecology
     18:05:21:16    Ahhh, ’89 I guess was the first good season we saw at
     Springfield. Um that was a wonderful season. Um about 10 years we manage
     to get a reasonable season and in between, they’re very marginal.
TF   And so what is it like? I can’t quite imagine what it’s like to live through a
     terrible drought where your family’s income is kind of piddling down the,
     down the plug hole so to speak. I mean what, what’s that like?
NM   I guess often you have to re-assess your values. Do a lot of soul searching.
     Um as well and try and feed cattle, keep them alive. Um –
BM   Go out with hay and molasses and try and keep them alive or send to
TF   So are you saying that the seasons here almost have like a metaphoric
     influence on what it’s like to live in the land? You know like, that when it’s
     drought, you feel droughty and –
BM   Yep.
NM   But the glare is really bad.
TF   Is it? Oh. In saying, like from what you’re saying to me, it almost sounds like
     you’re saying that when the land is lush and beautiful it feels fantastic to live
     here and when it’s droughty, it doesn’t. But is that, is that in any way describe
     how you feel about things?
NM   18:07:05:20    Oh, not really. When it’s a drought, you just feel very sorry for
     the cattle. And thankful that the Banks will be kind enough to keep – help you
     keep them alive. I guess. With through agistment or feeding them.
BM   Letting us battle on and –
TF   How would you describe that Bronwen? Like does it make much impact?
     Had it made much impact on your young brain and soul –
BM   Mmm.
TF   That cycle of seasons?
BM   18:07:32:00    Yeah, because you sort of – you get tired of the drought and
     just everything being bare but you know that some time there’ll, there’ll be
     rain and it’ll be really lush again. You look forward to that.
TF   Narelle, I can’t remember whether, probably I’m pursuing this line of
     questioning because I can’t remember whether it was you said to me or you
     said to Johnny and so there could be the capacity for kind of third handum that
     you were not sure that, that non-Aboriginal people should live in this
     landscape. Is that something you would relate to at all?
NM   18:08:10:14    Ohh I don’t really recall saying that but, yeah, that’s – could
     cause a big debate. Um, Bob probably said that Trish. No I shouldn’t – um,
     yeah, they’re fairly amazing how that they obviously lived here before white
     people settled. Um I admire them because since white people have been here,
     there – a lot more water’s been put in. Um, their coping capacity.
BM   Race Relations/Massacres
     I think the white people did do a lot of terrible things to them. There were
     some massacres on the place next door to ours Keeroongooloo.
TF   What do you know about that Bronwen?
BM   18:09:00:10    Not very much. Just that um I think some of the white settlers
     might have poisoned the waterholes or some of them, and just shot them, shot
     the black, shot the Aborigines.
TF   And is that, like where would you have heard those stories?
BM   Oh from my, from Bob or from the ringers that come through.
TF   Oh that’s interesting. So what ringers that would have worked around this
     land for a while?
BM   Yeah. Yeah.
TF   Could you recall any instance of being told stories? See I’m really interested
     in kind of how historical stories live and get re-told and what impact they have
     on the way people live their lives.
BM   Well um just like after a day’s mustering, just round a, round the table.
NM   Or campfire.
BM   Or yeah. Round the campfire, there’d get told a lot of stories.
TF   So can you give me any detail of the stories you might have heard?
BM   Yeah. That’s stretching my memory. Um, I’m just trying to think of one. Um
TF   How about you Narelle? Does anything –
NM   Um just times when – when we first arrived at Springfield, there was still
     drovers going through.
BM   You’d get stories of the drovers.
NM   Yeah.
TF   What, tell me about that? What do you remember about the drovers coming
NM   18:10:42:16     Um they, I think they brought cattle from in the Territory right
     through and that would be about the last droving trip that, that I’m aware of.
     Um I remember the night they came – stayed with us. They were lucky
     enough to put them in some yards and that was, I think, was the first time
     they’d had a break and not had to watch the cattle during the night. But that
     was very - very good that that happened because the next night, as they went
     through Raymore, the cattle rushed and I think they rushed every night for
     many many nights. I don’t really know what spooked them but, but um yeah,
     that’s ah unfortunate. It must be one thing that drovers really dread.
TF   Sure.
NM   I mean one of many. Actually full-time. It just stretched it. Oh they’ve since
     divided it in two, that job.
JH   ….. an ID.                            No transcript 18:11:32:10 – 18:30:42:00