Nowhere Man Rescues Deceased Family From Woy Woy Shed

21st November 2010

Ok, so there’s this shed out the back of Woy Woy which hasn’t been disturbed in yonks.

Well during a particularly slow moment last Tuesday, I found myself inadvertently hack-sawing the lock, driving my left shoulder into swollen timber before poking my nosey beak inside to have a bit of a sticky. Daddy long legs spun hard to the Eagle Rock and let me tell you, the inside loosely resembled Miss Havisham’s outhouse – you know Miss H, the old jilted bride from Great Expectations; all cobwebs, wedding cake and rusty filing cabinets (little known fact; Dickens’s original draft had the central character Pip dreaming of becoming a clerk in the Mersey side civil service and he was somewhat obsessed by both Estella and the Dewey system of stacking)

Upon completing a cursory two and a half hour glance about I begrudgingly gave up on locating the missing gold bullion – making do (and off) however with two tatty photo albums, and a box of slightly soiled paper clips.
Now apparently the shed belonged to a firm of solicitors who hadn’t used the digs in many years, and after much ferreting (a phone call actually) I was able to establish that the photo albums were part of a deceased estate and that I was for all intents and purposes, “quite welcome to them” … the paper clips however were to be returned ASAP and the break and enter on said property would “of course” be vigorously pressed – the nice lady adding without any hint of irony,  “do you perhaps require legal representation ?”

Settling back that same evening to a frosted tumbler of cask white, Tom Waits growling from the stereo in the corner I began turning the pages of my days booty, those ramshackle photo albums filled with other peoples lives. Yellowing pages that housed mostly black and white images of siblings Glenn and Sharyn Pope growing up in a federation style 1960s suburban bungalow – a residence known more accurately by the local PMG foot-soldier as
12 Burnie Street, Blacktown
.  Two average looking Aussie kids born only a year or three prior to the Nowhere Man in an eerily similar, dusty western Sydney suburb.      

“Deceased Estate” – the ‘nice’ lady had said.
But how could it be? I was looking at uncomplicated images depicting fun times: school photographs, family excursions … a bunch of pictures revealing carefree days indeed…
What the hell could of  happened to these kids?
Surely all these people can’t be dead – I mean they look so alive in the photo’s ...Glenn & Sharyn with their parents Arthur & Jeanette.  
I was intrigued. And surely there is still someone out there with a genuine emotional claim to this visual documentation.  

  Bouncing to my feet with both purpose and elevation, I headed urgently toward that mythical wardrobe of high imagination. A fervent swoosh of the arm had me instantaneously donning my best Angela Lansbury overcoat …it was late, the relentless rain cannoned into the dimly lit, cobblestoned laneway outside and yet despite the inclemency, the brolly of ‘must know’ shielded all precipitory efforts to derail … for rain is really just water leaking from the sky, and truth, ah yes the sweet bird of truth – she waits, like the 6:17 to Wyong via Koolewong, for no man. My nostrils flared open and either ear took turns being pressed hard up against the grindstone of discovery … pulling Angela’s collar up high about my much lined nape  - I set out into the night, whistling with quite some proficency - “Don’t fret good folk: I’m on the case” by the Buzzcocks 

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