Pippa Wischer and Hayley Hillis
Digital photograph
PXE 1015/1

I was a calligraphist. I shifted down here in 1977. I bought a caravan and looked for work. After two years I got a job as a caretaker. I had a heart attack in ’87 and went straight on the old age pension. I’ve been here nineteen years on my own in this caravan.

I was thirteen and a half when I got a job as a telegram boy. Then I became a calligrapher. I ended up with what they now call RSI in me hand. The doctors did tests and reckoned I’d done permanent damage so I had to stop work. My hand was buggered.

It’s fine living here but the facilities aren’t the best. There’s not enough toilets and showers for the number of people. Worse in holiday time. They have to bring in portable toilets. At Christmas time a lot of Melbourne people come up here and there’s a few of them that I used to play golf with until the last couple of years when I got too old for it. I still like to play but I’ve got arthritis and my neck nearly falls off if I try to swing a golf ball. So I’ve given that away now. I don’t even own a car now. I don’t like driving anymore. I’m too old for that too.

I’ve been by myself for forty years.

I’ve never been in the surf here. I’ve been down here twenty odd years and never been in the surf. I used to swim. I had an experience in the surf many years ago where I got dumped by a wave which took a big chunk off the front of me nose, and that cured me of going in again.

Some caravan parks are not so good. Where they have a lot of permanents and some of them are transients and you get a few bad types. But here it’s only a small park and I think most of the people that come here are reasonable people. I get on with everybody just about.