When our old neighbour, Gwennie, died in 2008, we bought her house the following year, lock, stock and barrel with all her personal possessions included. We sorted through decades of clothes, shoes, jewellery, hats, handbags and gloves, medicines, correspondence, knick knacks and photographs. I only recall meeting Gwennie once or maybe twice.
Since Gwennie was born in our house and lived here til her 90s, we sifted through her entire life from beginning to end. She went to Brisbane Girls' Grammer. I found her little autograph book, with messages from her friends, from when she finished school in about 1928.
She never married or had children, but instead remained living with her sister and their father until they both passed away. Gwen worked as a secretary at MacDonnell & East, the department store in George Street. I think it's now a duty free shop. Gwen loved to shop and play golf. She drove a car and went to church.
I found photos of Gwen dressed up for special events, then I would find the outfit she'd been wearing, hanging limp and faded in a musty cupboard fifty years later.
So, I hope you don't think me odd, but this brings us to Toowong Cemetery. I knew this was where Gwennie was buried, but through the magic of Google I was able to locate her exact whereabouts.
This be she, in the family plot.
I tooked Mim and Peaches with me. They were fascinated by the cemetery. Sure, it's an unusual holiday activity, but definitely worth a visit.
Gwennie is in quite an old part of the cemetery. A lot of graves around her are from the late 1890s and early 1900s. Being old graves and not having such immediate relatives to tend to them, combined with the havoc of tree roots, parts of the cemetery are in a bit of a state.
Every head stone tells a story. This poor dear woman is buried with three or four babies.Have you read The Mayne Inheritance? This is Patrick Maine's grave.
If all that cemetery talk has got you a little melancholy, here's a portrait of Tom the miniature wombat to lift your spirits. I'm not sure who took it? At some stage, obviously my camera has been swiped out of my handbag and replaced before I've been any the wiser.
On the weekend we took a trip out to the 'Scenic Rim' and went off the beaten track. It was well worth the effort.