View Full Version : Dropping the Anchor

Richard Quartermaine
11th January 2016, 04:48 AM
Prompted by Doc Vernon and John A Evans in their Powys, Wales posting after years, and some very many years, living on board in somewhat confined conditions waking up in different nooks and crannies around the Globe, where did the anchor drop and why.
For Margaret and me if our daughter had not left Singapore to go and stay in Australia when she was eighteen we, as expatriates hired from Scotland, would no doubt have returned to Britain. Our daughter married an Aussie, our son turned twenty-one and was no longer a 'dependent' in Singapore immigration terms. Eventually we moved back to Australia; first to Perth and then to NSW to be near the extending family.
But where? We had hooked up a caravan in Perth and drove the south coast road and across the Nullabour to Adelaide, and Melbourne, up the coast road to Sydney and parked at Emu Plains on the banks of the Nepean River at the foot of the Blue Mountains. Trips around the district became more frequent to Leura and Katoomba and as summer got into gear we needed little excuse to drive up to the 3,300ft elevation for a drop of 10 degrees Celsius.
That was twenty-nine years ago, come October. I got involved with what I knew best and retired at 79. Here's what it looks like. Top 10 Most Viewed Tourism Profiles in 2015 - Blue Mountains News | Fresh Air Daily - Blue Mountains Australia (http://www.bluemts.com.au/news/top-10-most-viewed-tourism-profiles-in-2015/?daily-news)
Who's next?

Des Taff Jenkins
11th January 2016, 05:02 AM
Hi Richard.
Thanks for those pics, we miss the Blue Mountains and the Gazette, I had many a letter printed in it.
My wife was only saying yesterday if she wins lotto she will go and stay in the Hydro Majestic, we had many a cup of tea and cakes there, with views over the Megalong Valley to die for, we went down there horse riding. And a great thrill riding down on the scenic railway.
Thanks Des


happy daze john in oz
11th January 2016, 05:11 AM
Having sold two pubs in UK to come to Oz we started with my brother in law. He had brought us up to this town on a visit and it did at the time reminds us of parts of England.

We lived in a number of suburbs before coming back to this town. It was then still small with a population of about 14,000. we built a new house on a new estate living there for almost 6 years. Then our next door neighbor, the one with the wife from hell, made me decide it was time to move. So we did, 400 meters up the road and built the same house again. Where to from here, who knows, but while we wait to decide will continue to sail on the cruise lines.

Richard Quartermaine
11th January 2016, 05:30 AM
Yes Des, I set up Biznet Now called Blue Mountains Regional Business Chamber (http://www.bmchamber.org.au/) in 2000, developed it for four years and got life membership. Keeps me going as I can never pass a freebie. We had about 150 at Hydro Majestic for the third of our Christmas Celebration Dinners. What a beautiful setup it was and as you say, that view across the Megalong Valley is stunning. The Hydro had a long spell of inaction but new owners have spent millions and it is now flying high. In days of yore it was a very popular honeymoon retreat. My sister, now 89, had her and my late bro-in-law's there as did our daughter's in-laws. See the changes?
Let your dear Lady have a peek at Home (http://www.hydromajestic.com.au/) . There is always their Boiler Room restaurant if Lotto doesn't chip in.

Doc Vernon
11th January 2016, 05:31 AM
The Hydro Majestic has taken a marvellous update after being dormant for a long time!
It is now restored ,but that lovely Tea Lounge they had there is no more,mind you in place they do have other Eating places and a nice new section!
Yes we too used to go up there on many an occasion for the Tea and Cakes and just sit and look out at that lovely view!
Its really very nice now again,
So glad that it was restored!
Its always full too,at Weekends especially the Cars are crammed full up!


Doc Vernon
11th January 2016, 05:40 AM
There was some time ago a Thread on very similar lines,i will have to look for it!
Not that it matters at all,would be good to Merge the two though!

Des Taff Jenkins
11th January 2016, 05:45 AM
Hi Richard /Doc
WE once had a Xmas in July at the moving restaurant, lovely dinner with friends who were driving so I was able to indulge a little, stepped off the side of the moving circle to order a drink and turned around to find them all on the other side, took a few wobbly steps to get back.
Cheers Des

11th January 2016, 06:06 AM
Was getting a bit old for the North Sea winters and also the edge had gone as re. job satisfaction once again. Work is work and one goes where one can get the best out of life. Saying that we came out here because I had family a sister recently widowed, came out for a holiday went back and filled in the paperwork. My target in life then was to get a job sweeping up the mall and living off the difference in house prices at the time. The best laid plans of mice and men oft go astray (think that one was Rabbie Burns Marion.) The house in UK was not sold for a couple of years, so had to get a bit better paying job than sweeping up the Mall. Hence back to sea, which I have said in other posts was well worth it and some of the best conditions ever had in 50 years. I knew Australia as any seaman who frequented here over the years, so was not stepping into a strange world, in fact most seamen out here at time were ex British MN. As per Richards views of the Blue mountains and such have also visited these parts as well as most ports in Oz. Is a beautiful country with varying aspects, the original settlers out here must have been a hardy bunch and Oz has its own history to look back on. Apart from its convict heritage there were many others apart from this which also included members of the British armed forces of the day who also stayed and made a go of it. To have a convict background out here is considered an honour. Don't know about the guards (soldiers) and such like as these must have been more numerous than the convicts. Went to Port Arthur once in Tasmania and although is in the history books as a terrible place re convicts, to me was a beautiful place and would imagine some of the convicts would have considered it paradise compared with the rubbish strewn streets of London. Everything is in the eye of the beholder, Australia to me in the latter years of my life I consider home. Cheers JS

11th January 2016, 07:12 AM
there was a short showing of a north sea rig rescue vessel on the tele a couple of nights ago .....in hurricane force winds and very very big seas ......it was not the sort of thing that would make anyone desperate to go to sea............therwas not much chance of getting a decent kip on that one......lol regards cappy

11th January 2016, 07:35 AM
#9. Can you remember the name of it Cappy. During those type of weather conditions it is usually only the safety boats out there. Most others can find an excuse for going in, I always did unless was unfortuanate enough to be caught with a rig on the end of a piece of string. Cheers JS

11th January 2016, 07:50 AM
sorry john the name didnt show .....but the old man stated his job was out there good weather or bad weather.......to stand by the rigs ......i think perhaps the weather had taken him many miles off his station........happy days lol.....regards cappy

Louis the fly
11th January 2016, 07:50 AM
My sister and her family live in houses near the Perth golf course in the bush. Her biggest worry, fire and snakes.

11th January 2016, 08:13 AM
#12... Louis the two go together like a knife and fork, the fire brings them all out, all the lifestock that is. I wouldn't like to get in the way of a Dugite or Brown snake escaping from a burning nest in the bush. I don't think it would be stopping to ask one to get out of the way. Which Perth Golf course there are dozens in the Perth area. Cheers JS

Louis the fly
11th January 2016, 08:59 AM
Hi John they live in an area named The Vines, don't know if this will help.

11th January 2016, 10:01 AM
#14 That's a posh area Louis, do you come from an old monied family. No is indeed a nice area with its own golf course and hotel, have been up there a few times, mostly all double storey houses with plenty of land around them. Ideal for a young family. Believe there are some good schools not too far away as well. Cheers JS

Ivan Cloherty
11th January 2016, 10:51 AM
Dropping Anchor..............Home is where the heart is

When I lived in Karachi and had to travel away, I couldn't wait to get back there because that is where my family, and hence my heart was. The same applied to Dubai, where-as in reality both places were assholes in the era I lived in them.

As a younger man Australia nearly claimed me, but the ship was in ballast and the deck a long way up from the quay and I couldn't jump that far!, the only country I would have jumped ship in; but quite happy the way my life panned out with all its ups and downs. Torquay is fine but built on seven hills which seem to get steeper each passing year!

John Arton
11th January 2016, 12:22 PM
Visited Aus. a number of times, actually had a cousin who lived in Perth, she was matron at one of the big hospitals there. Stayed with her once when I paid off in Kwinana. Sorry but was not too impressed with the place (Aus.) especially after a bouncer in a club in Sydney tried to break my kneecap when he refused us entry. The only place I visited and regretted not taking up the offer of a job there was British Columbia. Prince Rupert, Vancouver Island and Vancouver itself are to me some of the finest places in the world. Scenery and people are great. Would have gone there in a shot if both our sets of parents were not old and needed looking after in their latter years.
As Frank Sinatra sang, "regrets I've had a few" one of which was not been able to take the opportunity to emigrate to B.C.

Louis the fly
11th January 2016, 02:22 PM
Australia has been very good for my family, my sister and her husband emigrated with very little but were given the chances to make a success. As John Arton said about regrets, sometimes I look back and think maybe I should have gone too but at the time I was enjoying myself at sea.
For John S. Did you know the prison built by convicts in Freemantle is now a youth hostel ? I went for a tour around the prison many years ago and the guide was an ex con who had been locked up there. Good that someone had also given him a chance to go straight.

11th January 2016, 02:43 PM
##eveyone deserves one chance .......but not 2 in my book .....i will shake hands once or give anyone a chance but not twice ......it is not a good thing to do......once i think is enough but that is my view.......regards cappy

Richard Quartermaine
11th January 2016, 10:27 PM
Ivan, I think that you are in a nice place. I remember sailing close along the South Coast when Gothic left Cammell Lairds on shake down in December 1951. The coastline was very pretty and bathed in sunshine. I also recall seeing palm trees.

You may care to see an old mate of mine's spotlight on Karachi. Brian Self was Qld Ins Manager for India Pakistan and Burma back in the '60s and his wife Denise got amoebic dysentery. Sadly Brian passed away last year with melanoma cancer. I was lucky with good postings and the worst we ever got was dengue fever in Singapore in the first few months we were there. Going around the S.E. Asian traps I always had a packet of Lomotil handy for the inevitable Sukarno's Revenge. Here's the link to the Karachi article (then scroll down) My web 'skills' are purely self taught but I have just found a free on line tutorial to tizzy them up. spotlight (http://www.qioldies.org/spotlight.html)

Ivan Cloherty
11th January 2016, 11:38 PM
We still have the palm trees, although many were cut down along the promenade as the then Labour Council decided that the falling leaves were a 'elf n safti' hazard, naturally there was an outcry from us citizens as the Palm Tree is our town symbol, upon regaining power the Conservatives had all new palm trees planted along the promenade and other places from which they had been removed. Regretfully Torquay lapsed into decay for a few years but is slowly finding its feet again with some of the finest restaurants in the south, and a new bypass road for which the town has been waiting fifty plus years was opened in December 2015 and has shortened the journey into town by 30 minutes which can only be good news for prospective tourists.

Karachi... The Irani's and other Parsi's' such as the Minwallas were still influential in the 1970's as were various ex ruling families, including so called princes. Public nightlife had all but disappeared by the mid 70's but various religions of all denominations could practice freely, economically the country was a mess, but the Gokal family were very influential and enterprising building up a large shipping and trading company and the economy started to recover. I had an office in the 'Transclear Trading Company' which if I remember rightly was in the I M Qasim Building on the main road I. I. Chundrigar Road. Gokal offered me a Supts job, which I turned down as I had a feeling that the country was going down the road to 'Is-lam only' road and couldn't see myself enjoying that, turned out to be a wise decision. But my four years there taught me a lot about human deception and corruption all of which were alien to me and have remained so.

12th January 2016, 12:00 AM
Ivan are the Parsees of India the same religious group as in Pakistan. Sailing with all Indian crews of different religions and sects was told that the Parsee was considered the Jew of India. Sailed with a Parsee 2nd. mate and was lead to believe that smoking and drinking was also a strict no no. However did not stop this one. Walked into his cabin one day to have a beer with and there he was Kneeling at his settee with a towel wrapped round his head, asked him if he had been washing his hair, no he says I was just praying. Other parts of the crew had to have certain animals alive so they could ritually kill. Probably like yourself did not get involved in their mystic arts. They all had to live together for 12 months, and if there was any arguments it was kept away from me. The same 2nd. mate explained how the parsees were buried if that is the term. They were laid out on their Temple roof and the Shite hawks devoured the carcasses. As I also believe the term parsee came from Persia which is now Iran, it is only in these past years about the turmoil re religious groups in the middle east has been made public. I suppose they could be likened to the Mosquito problem we have in WA, the ordinary mossie carries no disease but is just a nuisance, the next mosquito carries the Malarial bacteria but can be cured, however we have out here what is called Ross River Virus a third type of Malaria which is very hard to control if ever can be, and matches up with certain mosquito elements now getting publicity as to its real source in the middle east. Oh the mystic Orient with its dancing girls, snake charmers, would be soothsayers, all there to be had by any tourist wishing to spend his/her money. Cheers JS Adding to post, the word Shite Hawk is not a derogatory word but the actual hawk is known by that name. Maybe has Persian origins as is a similar name to a certain sect. JS

happy daze john in oz
12th January 2016, 05:12 AM
Many of those who sailed went on to other countries to live, Australia, Canada, USA New Zealand and South Africa. Why, well it was all a matter of personal choice. After the BMN started to decline in the mid 60's many sort a better life in what they considered to be a better country with greater opportunities. It was tough at first for many, my brother in law and his new wife were such persons in the late 50's, Australia was then still a back water in many aspects but like the early settlers all who came knuckled down and got on with it. The country is now the better for their efforts and the country continues to grow. To some extent those early post war settlers were like the early convicts and free men, not sure what was there but prepared to' have a go'.
Some could not hack it and went back, some then returned again realizing that what they had here was far better than anything they could get back in UK. But there was one couple about 15 or so years ago who went back. They were interviewed on radio as to why. The problem, every morning they got up the sun was shining, very little rain, the birds sang different songs to those in UK. So it is a very personal thing as to why we did what we did and moved.

Richard Quartermaine
12th January 2016, 06:28 AM
In a nutshell, Johno. Five years after my parents came here ninety-two years ago there was the Great Depression. They often talked about 'Home' but never got back. Margaret's lot go back to the very early days. People like these are the salt of the earth and were in general, rewarded for their toil. I like this old record from one of my old colleagues many years ago. It needs enlarging or your tatting specs to read it.

12th January 2016, 08:11 AM
that is surely a story i enjoyed reading richard .....what made oz what it is ....true hardship they must have known initially ......and the grit to see it through ........proud they were from our island and it still stands today ......cheers cobber ...regards cappy

Ivan Cloherty
12th January 2016, 08:26 AM
#22 The Parsi or Parsee was considered to be the most financially astute person in that area and a good negotiator, I shared a lot of my social life (what there was of it) in their company, all of them including women were avid drinkers and smokers and I never came across any of them interupting anything to pray! They burial customs were strange to western eyes and there were many Parsi Towers both in Pakistan and India most people kept them at a distance, the hawks never bothered them, it was the humble crow that was their bird of symbol (they had something in common with the north american indian in that respect). The Parsees were originally from Iran and they were the ones that built that country's wealth even before oil became the black gold. They could be very generous individuals and certainly looked after my wife when I was frequently away on my problem solving trips and she was treated like a princess (which she thoroughly deserved) in fact I was known as 'Betty's husband' rather than she being known as 'Ivan's wife'. But she had a way with her and my chowkadir (watchman) would have killed me to protect her, he was a 6' 6" Patan built like an outhouse and always carried a rifle, frightening to look at but he worshipped the ground she walked upon and I never had any fear for her safety whilst I was away, the reason he worshipped her was because he had a mentally disturbed brother whom she allowed to sleep in our grounds and had a hut built for him and treated him as normal, I believe he would have killed his brother had he done her any harm, but the brother always thought the 'chota memsahib' (little woman) was some kind of goddess.

12th January 2016, 08:40 AM
Thanks Ivan, I used to go ashore quite a bit with the second mate and found him good company. Good job he was there one night in I think Adelaide when had been to a nightclub with him and the butla, the stripper finished up at our table and we all left to go for a chinese chop. Walking down the street the second mate said to me you do know that the she is not a she but a he don't you. Saved me from a fate worse than death. Cheers JS

Richard Quartermaine
12th January 2016, 09:38 AM
You would have sorted the wheat from the chaff when you were here Cappy. There are, of course, the bludgers who feed off the generous and the naive in the name of guardian; and you eloquently posted my thoughts completely a while back, but I am sure that you were not short of true friends along the way.
Cheers mate,

12th January 2016, 10:16 AM
richard i have found in my life i do not need many close to me......except my family .......i like most on the site have learned at our age..... to quote ......the world is full of trickery ......i have few close friends ......but many aquaintences ......my friends i hold close ......and will stand by them.......the bludgers and scroungers get short shrift.....i have no time from those who live in a world of pretence .......specially those who argue to educate me ......i dont need that pretensiousness......i think i have learned all i need to know ......i now enjoy the fruits of my labour and share them with my family and my close freinds......i have no axes to grind .....only the stupidity of governments and the greed of some can aggravate me .....i am as i recently told my kin over xmas ..... contented.......life is what WE make it .......not what others would have us be .....yours with respect cappy

12th January 2016, 02:21 PM
#24, Couldn't resist Richard.:rolleyes:

William Montagu ROTHERY
Born Abt 1810
Gender Male
Immigration 21 Feb 1831 Sydney, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location [1, 2, 3]

Arrived on the Sovereign which had sailed from Plymouth 9 Oct 1830, arriving in Port Jackson 21 Feb 1831, via Hobart Town.
Died 11 Jan 1899 Mandurama, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location [4, 5, 6]

Obituary 12 Jan 1899 Sydney, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location [7]
The Sydney Morning Herald


MANDURAMA, Wednesday.

Mr. William Montagu Rothery died at Cliefden, near Lyndhurst, early this morning. He was born in Devonshire, England, in 1809, came to Cliefden in January, 1831, where he has resided ever since. He married shortly after coming to Cliefden the daughter of Major Lockyer, for many years Sergeant-at-Arms in the Legislative Assembly of New South Wales. Mr Rothery was the oldest member of the Australian Club. He leaves five sons and two daughters. Mrs Rothery died ten years ago. Deceased was the first squatter in Australia who sent wool direct to England. He dealt with Messrs Balme and Co., London wool brokers, for 68 years.

12th January 2016, 11:59 PM
Thanks for the spotlight Richard. Believe I thanked you sometime ago viz the information you passed about Alex Cooper , Deceased. Believe that was his Father in the government position before the fall of Singapore that you supplied. I was fairly close to Alex who was not a one to talk about himself, but whenever I stayed with him when he was convalescing at various times managed to get some of his history out of him usually over a bottle of whisky. He like yourself had led a full life, starting life as a junior accountant with British Imperial Airlines, the fore runner of British Airways. Was at Dunkirk as a reservist in the army as a Driver in the RASC. At the end of the war came out in 1946 as a Bird Colonel. Went back and worked a number of years as an accountant for various Airlines and finished up as Head Accountant I think at various times for Malaysian and Singapore Airlines. His various stations over the years included India, The Bahamas, and Aden which even in those days had to go around with an armed bodyguard, so even then there were troubles in the Middle East. Settled in Perth and opened his own travel bureau. Pity you didn't have contact with him when he was alive, as no doubt you would both have been with the same stream of ex pats, especially in Singapore. Although Alex wasn't a seaman he had the same wanderlust and quest to see new places and is a man sorely missed today, as his type would know a lot more than the present day diplomat and gung ho politician. Thanks once again your interesting post of what things used to be like. Regards JS