Australia Mate

Roy’s International Education

Back around 1953, a geologist with an Australian mining company came to Kingman, Arizona, to survey the possibility of reopening any of the old gold or silver mines in the area. It could possibly mean jobs and a big boost to the local economy.
However, the best news was that he brought his family and his daughter, Olivia, would be in Roy’s class.
Monday morning Roy started primping. I watched him massage another handful of Wildroot Cream Oil through his hair. Grease was running down behind his ears.
“You’re going to a lot of trouble today,” I said. “Why?”
“That new girl’s starting school today.”
“So? Don’t you already date more girls than anyone else in town?”
Okay, it was a whine. I was a little envious since I couldn’t get a date any easier than Smelly Dumps, the eighty-year-old town drunk.
“This girl’s bound to be extra special,” he said.
“How did you arrive at that conclusion?”
“Well, she’s from Down Below-“
“Down Under.”
“Yeah, they spin backward and everything’s upside down for them.”
“Yep. I bet her eyes blink up from the lower lids, and I’ll have to help her read our books since she probably reads from the bottom of the page up.”
“That’s extraordinarily nice of you,” I said. “Why are you going to the trouble?”
“Because, if she’s wearing a dress, it’ll fall up showing her bloomers. I’d like to see that.”

I couldn’t help but stare in awe at my older brother while he continued his comments of our different cultures.
“They’re a frisky people, too,” he said. “They’re always saying it’s a good day to mate.”
I left to remind Dad to have the worm medicine ready to dose Roy again since he was still showing signs of unhealthy instability.
But it never came to that. The Australian family took to him and he got to fly all over the southwest with the geologist. He got quite the education in lost mines and treasures, Spanish gold, stagecoach robberies, miners, and gunfighters.
He never told me what Olivia taught him.

I won’t ask for comments on what you’ve been taught.
Blog is posted on Wednesdays.
Thank a veteran.

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