In 2017 when you could still travel outside Australia’s borders, Kate and I had 3 weeks touring Scotland, England, Paris and Berlin. I loved every minute of it and cant wait to go again when COVID is under control. The first place we visiting was the Isle of Skye as this is where some of my family came from.
This is Uig, on The Isle of Skye. I wanted to go as this is where Duncan and Mary Campbell came from in 1852. They are my great, great, great grandparents and were the parents of Catherine Campbell who married Henry Julius Mueller in 1876.
Duncan and Mary were victims of the Highland Clearances and despite them coming from one of the remotest spots in the UK, quite a bit is known about them.
He was a shoe maker and they lived in Uig. They were supposedly destitute and homeless when they were collected by the HIES (Highland and Islander Emigration Society) and put on the Allison to voyage to Port Phillip Bay.
The resettlement scheme was set up with donations from prominent Londoners including Queen Victoria and was run by Charles Trevelyan Assistant Treasurer (notorious in Ireland as the man that oversaw the Famine). They were pretty much motivated by a ethnocentric attitudes to the Celts, laissez faire politics and the overarching belief in their god. Racism, economic policy and religious fervour – a deadly mix or at least it is for the victim.
I cant see Duncan making anything from repairing shoes considering everybody was starving so forced or not the resettlement was an opportunity for them and their children who all survived the journey.
But Uig although very beautiful and rugged was a very bleak place the days we visited.
Saltwater Beach is a beautiful spot just out of Old Bar. I visited when my daughter Kate was nursing at Taree. It is a special place to the Biripi. When they were removed from here and taken to Taree, they would walk here for special ceremonial occasions. This is Khappinghat Creek which feeds into the ocean at Saltwater Beach.
Several years ago I was working for a Federal Member of Parliament. I was good at my job because I suppose I cared about people. In retrospect, (having a stroke will do this to you) maybe I got a bit big headed. Politics is a world full of ego’s and it is difficult for it not to rub off on everyone.
My boss came to fame for a lie. It tied up government for a fair while and led to a change in government. I still can’t forgive him. He lied to me longer than he lied to you. My whole life I wanted to improve things for the better. I was able, through my Boss, to do this, for a time.
But I’m not bitter. Nearly dying will do that to you. Some of my journeys are for quite fanciful reasons. Its fun to explore, so more on this soon.
I am going to install Solar on the van. There are some things I am going to have to ask the experts about. Like, just how much wattage I need for a small fridge, some lighting, a small stove and backing up my phone and laptop. So I would welcome any suggestions.
I have long dreamt of buying a camper van, writing and exploring and I am apparently the right demographic to get out there on the open road. Since I am starting from scratch I will share with you experience getting set up and my adventures. So stay tuned.
I am a sixty something year old woman. I have spent a large part of my life involved in progressive politics. I got quite sick a few years ago and although I still have an interest in politics, politics has lost its interest in me. So I’m going to embrace the invisibility that my age and gender have given me and head out in my van, with my dog Poppy and enjoy the freedom of it all. I will be blogging my adventures starting at the beginning so join me.
Whilst I am yet to get started in my new life, I have been camping out in places I find of interest. I might just give you a taste of that as Poppy and I get set for our adventures.