The Summerhouse

Last week I ventured out to New Farm Park, not far from Brisbane’s city centre. All I remembered was the name ‘New Farm’ but I was ecstatic to find that my memory actually still works and I found the flats where we stayed in 1988 and the park I used to take my daughter to each morning when she was two years old. My son came too, in a way, comfortably sitting in my very pregnant tummy.

I found the kiosk where we shared milkshakes, under the huge fig tree, only now it’s closed and there’s a notice explaining that it’s to be demolished and a protest petition to sign.

I looked across the rose garden to a pavilion where women used to practice Tai Chi each morning and I imagine they still do. Way back then I thought it was a fascinating but odd thing to be doing in a public park.

And the playground was still there, but different – there’s concrete, a stainless steel barbeque and recycling bins, but yellow leaves were falling, birds were singing and new little children were filling it with laughter, which made me feel happy and sad. I thought about all that has happened since I was last there, both to me personally and in the world.

The website is www.oursummerhouse.com.au where you can add your name to a protest list to save the Summerhouse. The kiosk was built in 1914 and the Mayor’s phone number is 34034400 if you’d like to register your name with him. It’s certainly worth saving.

I also visited the nearby library, where I used to take my daughter and I remember one day we were making Christmas craft and once I’d finished helping her with making an angel, she promptly ripped its head off! I was mortified that my sweet little girl could do such a thing! Small children, small problems.

There is a lovely mural on the park side of the library called ‘Once Upon a Time’, which fitted my mood exactly.

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Comments

  1. Kaye Baillie Corinne, this sounds like the beginning of a beautiful novel. I wonder what happens next?
    June 22, 2011 at 8:56 am · Reply
    • Corinne Fenton Thanks Kaye. That hadn't even occurred to me. We'll see.
      June 22, 2011 at 6:06 pm · Reply
  2. Chris Bell How wonderful to rewalk some of your and your family's steps and enjoy all the memories. (Even the decapitation - because now you know your gorgeous little girl grew up into a lovely young woman who never rips off heads.) I hope they save the kiosk, because it no doubt holds similar wonderful memories for many others. Chris
    June 22, 2011 at 12:37 pm · Reply
    • Corinne Fenton Yes it was lovely, Chris. Yes, relieved that tendency did not continue.
      June 22, 2011 at 6:07 pm · Reply
  3. Sue Isn't strange how memories flood back to us? So glad you are enjoying! x
    June 22, 2011 at 3:53 pm · Reply
    • Corinne Fenton Thanks Susie. Yes, one of my favourite words - memory.
      June 22, 2011 at 6:08 pm · Reply

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