Friday, 20 May 2016

Epilogue: Rosie photos; 1978 and beyond

After we left South Africa, Johnno and I spent 3 months travelling through Africa to reach London by May where we bought a fitted out Kombi van and started our journey through Europe. After reaching Nice in South of France, Johnno left to join his girlfriend Sarah in Paris, leaving me to continue to Corfu in the Kombi, where I spent the rest of the summer on Glyfada beach working as a water ski instructor. After many adventures, and a slow journey back to London at the end of the summer, I sold the Kombi outside Australia House in the Strand in October 1978. After handing over the keys to the new owners, as I looked around my eyes alighted on a billboard in a window advertising fun, sun and sandy beaches in a faraway land. It was Australia!!

I walked a few steps and I was inside the entrance lobby of Australia House.

The rest is history, as they say in the classics. I applied for a job at Australia House on the same day as I sold the Kombi, and was accepted by National Mutual as a Systems Analyst a few days later, and emigrated to Australia in March 1979.

I met LeeAnne Houston at the Tok H. hotel in Toorak in July 1979 (she also worked at National Mutual), and we were married in April 1984. In Sept 1990, our son James was born. We still live in the same house in Ashburton that we bought the year before we were married, and where we had the wedding and reception.

I retired from full-time IT consulting in 2013 and now run a website design consultancy for small businesses in the South Eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria.

Rosie moved back to London in 1978, and followed her dream by becoming a croupier at a casino in South of France, met and married a film director (Ray Corbett) and had one son(Ashley). After divorcing the film director, she moved back to the same village where we met many years ago and started breeding Bassett hounds. I met her one last time in 2013, after 35 years, before she passed away in June 2014 and she is buried at St Bartholomew's Church in Horley, Surrey. So she enjoyed a full life as only she knew how!.

Jenny followed me to the UK in December 1978 and we had a couple of fabulous weeks culminating in THE funniest episode in a bath in a BnB in Brighton, while tripping on magic mushrooms. She saw snow for the first time. She wanted marriage, children and the whole baggage which I couldn't offer her, and sadly I had to say goodbye to her as she boarded a plane back to Joburg. I heard later she was happily married to someone else.

Pat Myhill eventually moved to London to work, and by 'happen-chance' met Paul Overton walking down Oxford St one day shortly after she arrived. She worked briefly for Paul in his business, but the old 'spark' wasn't there (Paul only had eyes for an incredibly attractive Swiss girl in the office, who didn't fancy Paul, but that didn't stop Paul from trying). So Pat packed her bags and went to Ireland where she fell in love and married an Irishman (after several other romances!), but which wasn't destined to last and she found herself back in South Africa in the late 80's. She found more love in South Africa, married again, but again it didn't last until she met and married her current husband in the late 90's and she now lives in Ramsgate, south of Durban.

Nick moved to Qatar to work in Insurance Broking and was known to enjoy the high-roller lifestyle and drive expensive cars. He surprised us all by turning up at my wedding in Australia in 1984, only to disappear again. No one has heard from him since!

Here are some random photos of Rosie and I. Enjoy...
Rosie and I in England 1974

Reading the Rand Daily Mail

Rosie at Houghton

Rosie at Kyalami

Rosie 1975

David 1975

The Rosie pout was not uncommon

David at Houghton

Rosie - smoking as usual


Rosie with black cat

Me with Rosie in 2013

Me in 1977 and 2017