It is a very hot day in the northern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia; really hot and very dry. It is the kind of day when the shimmer of the temperature distorts the horizon line of the Indian Ocean that I can see when we go to swim. The beach is ten minutes walk from my parents’ house, a 1970s dream home, originally with shag pile carpet, which has long been replaced. On days like this it is too hot to walk, and we drive for our mid-morning swim, the second swim of the day. The heat from the bitumen makes the air shimmer and the sand sears our feet, so we get as close to the sea as possible before running shoeless for the water and gentle waves. It is perfect weather for drying laundry, yesterday’s dirty washing is white, pristine, folded and put away before lunch. It is Perth and this is Christmas. We return ‘home’ regularly to visit relatives and old friends, to reconnect with our shared history, but by the end of two weeks I am always ready to go back to the east coast, where my real life is disconnected from my Western Australian past, which is how I prefer it. Besides, all that swimming gives me water brain and all I can imagine is immersing myself in the salty water of the Indian Ocean in order to get cool, and I cannot think. The distance between there and here is geographically and psychically great, and ‘home’ pulls in both directions. That past continues to live into my present, hounding my academic endeavours, luring me into remembering history and acknowledging it.
|Title of host publication||‘Ngapartji Ngapartji: In Turn, In Turn’—Ego-histoire and Australian Indigenous Studies|
|Place of Publication||Canberra|
|Number of pages||14|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Dec 2014|
|Name||ANU Lives Series in Biography|
- Western Australia
- Mrs Dance