Early Memories-Noreen Mary Walch
Born 21/03/23, Rainbow, Vic.
Married 28/01/50, Hopetoun, Vic.
Died 18th Janaury 2017
(Each member of the second generation alive in 1983 wrote their memories of the early days at Baring.)
Where does one start - Spent a lot of my early life on the farm, milking cows, feeding lambs, pigs and fowls. Spent a lot of time riding, learnt to ride at an early age. Remember one day the horse took off with me. I use to follow the Horse Team around in the paddock when they were ploughing. This day the horse had enough and bolted for home with me screaming all the way. The Horse stopped at the gate and some how I stayed on - after that I said I could ride. One marathon journey I had was with Dad. We went to Tempy to drive some sheep home. Left early in the morning in the gig taking a saddle horse with us, which I was to ride home droving the sheep - took us all day.
School days at Baring were very good. Most times we walked across the paddock - didn't seem very far. Neil and I would send Matt off early as he was younger and slower. We would first help with the milking and then run off to school. Remember when Neil broke his leg, we were playing cricket or rounders and Neil fell over. The school bell rang and we all went in, and told the teacher that Neil wouldn't get up, and he was sulking.
The only time I saw mum get real wild and actually swear was when a dog got loose and killed the turkeys. She was very cross. Had great times rabbiting, going around the traps after tea with Neil and Alan using a lantern - it use to get quite spooky. We walked of course, sold the rabbits for 1/6 a pair. We also ate quite a few. In those days we use to have Indian Hawkers coming around - funny they always made the night stop at home, camped at the machinery shed. They made lovely pufftaloons which we use to eat.
Sunday we would all go to Sunday School. Mum used to teach so we would all pack into the buggy and drive down to the Baring Hall.
Life in those days was very carefree, as kids we were very happy, we had enough to eat, a roof over our heads, the cares of the world were lost to us- just accepted life as it was. Mum baking breads twice a week, can see it now, the big dish of flour, then dough wrapped in blankets by the kitchen stove. Waiting for it to rise before putting it in the bread tins to be baked, the lovely smell of fresh bread.
The soap making in the copper, was quite an event, making sure it didn't boil over, the packing of eggs each week - that was Dad's job (actually the cream and egg cheque each month kept the farm going in those early years.)
The tragedy of losing six of our cows through eating old decayed bones in the paddock- a big blow.
When one thinks of those times now, our mum and dad had quite a battle, but we never heard them complain -life went on Dad coming home from Patche bringing a big bag of minties for us was quite a treat.
Big time for me when I went to Melbourne with Dad to the Anzac day march when I was 18. Stayed in Melbourne for 12 months and then went nursing in Horsham After passing finals went to the Freemason's Hospital and stayed there 5 years.
I use to get annoyed with people when they pitied the country children, as I think we had a wonderful life-carefree and happy.
For who we have to thank was mum for her great outlook on LIFE