28 Aug 2009 – Serene Surroundings
Arrived into PER with clear blue sky and was met by PP at the airport. So good to see her in good spirits. Her new role as a grandmother is not an easy one, especially after her fall and surgery. Peggy & Ian live in a beautiful mansion in Applecross, a serene suburbs of PER. There are avocado lemon, mango and olive trees by a pool house and a swimming pool. Such a treat to be here.
New Norcia is the only monastic town in Australia, 132km/82m north of Perth. In 1846, a Benedictine mission was started and within a year the mission was moved to where the town is today with Spanish style architecture and some historical sites. Among these are the two old boarding schools, St Ildephonsus’ and St Gertrude’s (both now used for accommodation and various social functions), the Abbey Church (containing the tomb of Rosendo Salvado), an old mill, a wine press, a hotel, and the monastery itself. The Benedictine monks continue to occupy the town.
PP was shocked when KK&I told her how he was only allowed cold showers in his boarding school days in Sydney and I was allowed to bath only once a week in my boarding school in Dublin! Our Aussie guide, Richard was excellent and it was a delightful day with my two childhood friends in spite of the rain. Looking forward to heading south for Margaret River’s wine yards tomorrow.
Besides, I think that when one has been through a boarding school, especially then, you have some resistance, because it was both fine comradeship and a fairly hard training – Arne Jacobson