Another week closer to my book coming out on Kindle etcetera. So we are still working hard on editing so we are ready and we can give the best in our product - for this reason we are only doing a short blog this week.
Writing ‘Her Father’s Shadow’ will always be my biggest joy. Why? Because the story, although totally fiction, is founded on my father’s short story. A story I never asked about because of the answer I got when I asked my father to write his life story… Thought I would find out more about his life if he did. He was an extraordinarily quiet man who taught me heaps. This week, I am going to share with you a story from one of his and my favorite Australian Authors : Henry Lawson. You can read part of it here and there is a link below to read the rest.
"The Loaded Dog"
"DAVE REGAN, Jim Bently, and Andy Page were sinking a shaft at Stony Creek in search of a rich gold quartz reef which was supposed to exist in the vicinity. There is always a rich reef supposed to exist in the vicinity; the only questions are whether it is ten feet or hundreds beneath the surface, and in which direction. They had struck some pretty solid rock, also water which kept them baling. They used the old-fashioned blasting-powder and time-fuse. They’d make a sausage or cartridge of blasting-powder in a skin of strong calico or canvas, the mouth sewn and bound round the end of the fuse; they’d dip the cartridge in melted tallow to make it water-tight, get the drill-hole as dry as possible, drop in the cartridge with some dry dust, and wad and ram with stiff clay and broken brick. Then they’d light the fuse and get out of the hole and wait. The result was usually an ugly pot-hole in the bottom of the shaft and half a barrow-load of broken rock.
There was plenty of fish in the creek, fresh-water bream, cod, cat-fish, and tailers. The party were fond of fish, and Andy and Dave of fishing. Andy would fish for three hours at a stretch if encouraged by a ‘nibble’ or a ‘bite’ now and then—say once in twenty minutes. The butcher was always willing to give meat in exchange for fish when they caught more than they could eat; but now it was winter, and these fish wouldn’t bite. However, the creek was low, just a chain of muddy water-holes, from the hole with a few bucketfuls in it to the sizable pool with an average depth of six or seven feet, and they could get fish by baling out the smaller holes or muddying up the water in the larger ones till the fish rose to the surface. There was the cat-fish, with spikes growing out of the sides of its head, and if you got pricked you’d know it, as Dave said. Andy took off his boots, tucked up his trousers, and went into a hole one day to stir up the mud with his feet, and he knew it. Dave scooped one out with his hand and got pricked, and he knew it too; his arm swelled, and the pain throbbed up into his shoulder, and down into his stomach too, he said, like a toothache he had once, and kept him awake for two nights—only the toothache pain had a ‘burred edge’, Dave said.
Dave got an idea.
‘Why not blow the fish up in the big water-hole with a cartridge?’ he said. ‘I’ll try it.’ Read More
Hope this brightened your day…
*Photo/story taken from “A Camp-Fire Yarn” Henry Lawson complete works 1885 – 1900 compiled and edited by Leonard Cronin – first published 1984