We had Plymouth Bretherans as neighbours when I was a kid. I think I have written about them in the past. We also had Baptists as neighbours. I think I may have written about them too. That is the problem when you have been writing for a long time. You become repetitive. But here is a new take on our Baptist neighbours, because I have found a photo.
This is Kenneth. He was my best mate for a time. We rode bikes together. We drove tractors together. We were at school together. We made billy carts together. We explored the bush together. We paddock bashed in old Morris Minors. We cranked and got going an old stationary steam engine. I was invited to lunch at his house one day. We ate in the dining room, which had a floor with holes in it but much superior to the kitchen that had a compacted dirt floor. I started to hoe into the food before I was abruptly brought to heel while grace was said. That is one of my earliest recollections of embarrassment. In the background the ABC news on 3AR, or was it Radio 1, droned on, with a gong between each news item. Never mind dining at a highly polished table that was about to descend to the earth the china was fine and delicate, as was the cutlery silver and polished. It spoke of better times, when Kenneth's mother Catherine grew up in Sandringham and then married below her station to Frank.
We also found a timber tram trestle bridge in the bush. We briefly dammed the mighty Tanjil River. I had no idea what an uncircumcised male appendage looked like, so Kenneth showed me his. Hmm, looked a bit different and rather odd. I have come to appreciate such a look. Kenneth did not have the gift of the gab, but he was a good mate. He is older in this photo than I remember him. Maybe I had already left home. I don't think I took the photo. I expect he went on to marry a good Baptist girl but oh how our lives have diverged since we were two little boys with our own little toys.