No Good at Sewing –

The old timer was sitting among the pots and pans in orderly array outside his little camp, he was skewering a startling blue patch to a pair of trousers. ‘Can I do it for you?” asked the young lady visitor with a smile.
He regarded her solemnly over his spectacles, then, ‘Thank ye kindly,” he said, and handed over the patch, and a needle nearly four inches long, and a linen thread well licked at each end. He pulled up another petrol tin for her to sit on and lit a cigarette that looked as if it was made with wet tea leaves.
“Never was no good at sewing,” he volunteered. “With a hammer and gad there’s no man on any field can run me second, but these here instruments has got me beat.
I remember once Davey Shaw and me was mates outside Broad Arrow. Struck it rich. Pickin up the stuff in lumps as big as potatoes while we was puttin up our tents. Six hundred ounces in the first week, and then Davey couldn’t stand it no longer. he went into Coolgardie and bought the dt’s, then came back and cut his throat on me.
I heard him groanin in his tent in the night time, and there was only one thing I could do. I put a hundred bag of flour on his feet, chained him down with a camel hobble, and sewed him up again.
That was a ticklish job, Dave was so bad he didnt know whether it was happening or whether he was dreaming it was. Anyhow, I got the edges all tucked in and I made sure it was holding good. Then I gave him a feed of condensed milk and roped him down for four days. By that time he had come to himself, and his neck had knitted a bit. Dave never took another drink in his life, but wasnt he mad? Reackoned he had to grow a beard to hide them dorg-leg stiches of mine.
‘No good at sewing ” he finished up mournfully, ‘It lorst me the best mate I ever had”.

Ref:-  The Great Australian Loneliness by Ernestine Hill

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My name is Moya Sharp, I live in Kalgoorlie Western Australia and have worked most of my adult life in the history/museum industry. I have been passionate about history for as long as I can remember and in particular the history of my adopted home the Eastern Goldfields of Western Australia. Through my website I am committed to providing as many records and photographs free to any one who is interested in the family and local history of the region.

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  1. A good story – believable.

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