An Orange Treat

June 17, 2014 at 4:07 pm | Posted in Australia, Family History, History | 7 Comments
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Group of oranges

Mum loved oranges. When we lived in England she would occasionally buy the Australian ones. They were the best to be had, large, sweet and juicy, something to put in a Christmas stocking, a real treat.

Dad made the decision to come to Australia when he returned from the war in 1946. He first applied to migrate in 1947, but it wasn’t until 1954 that families were allowed to have assisted passage.

Assisted passage adMum would have seen Australia, then a British colony, as many others did – rough, raw and wild. I’m sure it was Dad’s enthusiasm that drove the emigration; Mum was more reluctant and full of anxiety. Leaving the soft English country farms and moors and even the dank, dark and soot-stained town was a step into the unknown for her

One of the things that may have softened the anxiety she felt at leaving her home, her mother and all that was familiar to her, was the thought of those beautiful Australian oranges. She could enjoy them any time, instead of only when they were in season) and available from the local Oswaldtwistle greengrocer. That was in the Australian winter, summertime in England.

Orange export label Leeton 1940s

To Mum’s great disappointment, those big, sweet and juicy oranges were not even available in Australia. All the best of them were exported, mostly to England. What was available in Australian shops was the second and third grade fruit.

bad-orange-003

What a let-down!

Have you ever got your hopes up over something and had them dashed when you got it?

(c) Linda Visman 17.06.14

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7 Comments »

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  1. Talking about oranges and having your hopes dashed, Linda. I’ll never forget when I first went to England and discovered the most magnificent oranges. I couldn’t stop eating them they were so nice and sweet, far, far better than the ones at home in South Africa. You can imagine my consternation when I discovered that the oranges I was eating actually came from South Africa. So I share something of your Mom’s past frustration. 🙂

    • It seems that other countries get the cream of the exports from other countries, doesn’t it, Don. Which leaves the lower quality for those whose countries actually grow the best, but don’t allow their own people to share the taste!
      It’s like natural gas here – we have a shortage, because most of our production is exported! 😦

  2. Strewth, it is still rough, raw and wild, in a good sort of way, at least it was last time I looked 😉

  3. I wouldn’t be human if my life had not been touched by disappointment. There are too many instances to cite, but here’s one from the recent past.
    Ron and I had decided to repaint the dining room. After much thought, we chose a colour that appeared to be a very pale blue: almost white. The reality was much colder…so much so that Ron wanted to re-paint it in cream. But in time we came to accept it, even finding it just right in Summer. 🙂


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