“You walk into your home to find a couple you don’t know sitting in your living room eating a slice of cake. Tell what happens next.”
‘Maureen, is it you? How? I’m lost for words. It’s so wonderful to see you. I thought we’d lost touch completely.’
Maureen’s daughter says, ‘Who is this Mummy?’
‘This is Barbara, don’t you remember me telling you; we have been trying to find her?’
‘Barbara this is Adele, I’ve named her after that lovely girl who used to live with us.’
‘Adele, you are wisely named, I’m delighted to meet you! How old are you?’
‘I’m four’ putting up four fingers.
‘Maureen, I have so many questions. It must be over thirty years since we lived together at the family group home. Please tell me about your life, are you married? Where do you live now?
‘Hey, wait on, one question at a time!’
‘I’ve missed you so much, and always have wondered where you might be.’
‘Well, I’m here now! We are looking for somewhere to live. My abusive marriage broke up and we managed to escape. I decided to try to track you down.’
‘Let me make a cup of tea and you can tell me all about it.’
‘Anyway, you are no longer with Ian. Looks like you have a story to tell too.’
‘True, I have given up my wandering ways and am now settled with Chris. I’ll take you out to the studio so you can meet him.’
‘How did you find me with a new name?’
‘Well, I contacted Ian. He hasn’t changed his name. He said you’d love to see me, so that gave me the courage to come.’
‘Christopher, this is Maureen and Adele. Do you remember me telling you of my first child that arrived at the family group home when I was in Queensland? I’ve shown you the photos of that time. We’ll have to get the photos out to show Adele what Mummy looked like when she was young.’
‘Come and have a cup of tea everyone. Would you like juice, Adele?’
‘Would it be alright if we stayed with you for a bit?’ Maureen asks.
‘Of course, that will give us time to catch up properly. Have you kept in touch with your brothers? Are they still in Queensland, or did they go back to New Guinea?’
‘They all stayed in Queensland. Yes, we have lots to catch up on. Remember when nits went through the home and you had to wash all the linen from eleven children’s beds?’
‘Yes, I do, but at least the weather was hot and it didn’t take long for the sheets to dry. Ivy was there to help and she was a marvel!’
‘It was Jamie’s sister who came with the nits that time we invited her to come out with us. I remember those nits were jumping everywhere before you managed to wash her hair and comb it before we went out.’
‘I’m scratching at the very thought of it!’
If you are out there in the biosphere Maureen, I would really love it if you could make contact.