Thornleigh Seventh-day Adventist Church (Sydney, Australia)

Home > Online Magazine > Online Magazine: Edition 55 - Autumn (March-May) 2014 > A Mail Day Adventure (by Maye Porter)

A Mail Day Adventure

by Maye Porter

Once upon a time, long, long ago, when I was a small child, growing up was a lot different to what happens today.  Kulikup was the area, not enough buildings there to be called even a village, and it is not much different today.

For example, we had no electricity!  Can you even begin to imagine that?  It meant we had no light switches or power points anywhere in the house.  It also meant there was no refrigerator to keep things cool, no washing machine for the dirty clothes, no electric stove to cook our food.  (And no gas to do it either).   Nor was there any microwave oven or electric fans, and air conditioning had never been thought of, though we often wished for it during a heatwave.

Another thing we didn't have was a telephone.  So, of course there was no mobile or any of those new kinds of phones that do everything.  And no computers or internet and no TV or radio so for news we read the newspaper, even though the news might be a week old.  Instead of watching TV or playing with our I-phones for hours each day we read books or created our own fun playing outside.

As for toys, we hardly knew what they were.  I only remember a little tin tea set that my brother and I used when we played tea-parties and I was "Mrs Brown" and my brother was "Mrs Smith".

And, can you believe it, we didn't even own a car, there was no bus to catch and the nearest railway station was 15 km south of us.  If you wanted to tell someone something you had to do it face to face, which was not a bad thing, really.

Do you think we were bored?  Never.  I don't think the word had been invented then.

Do you think we were deprived?  Well, if we were we did not know it because we had something better that mere things.  We had blessings that many children today lack.  We lived on a farm and had parents who not only loved us but were home with us all day every day.  We grew up laughing and loving and playing and working together.  And there was always lots of work to do around the farm, even for little people.

The other precious blessing we had was knowing our wonderful Father God and His Son

Jesus. So many children today have never even heard of Him except as a swear word.  In our home He was a precious Friend.  My parents had learned to love Him when they were children. Sadly neither Mum, Dad nor us childrenhad ever had the pleasure of attending church because the nearest one was about 130 km away.  As a result we did not know many hymns, but we enjoyed singing "Jesus Loves me", "What a Friend we have in Jesus"  and "Don't forget the Sabbath."   And we very early learned to pray as we knelt by our mother's knee before we went to bed.

There was something else we had that you have today- a postman.  However our postman only came three times a week.  He came in an old truck because he had a long way to travel and brought more than letters.  There were parcels and bread orders and even groceries that had been ordered the last time he came around.  The only problem was that he left our mail about 2 kilometres away on the other side of our neighbour's paddock.  My Dad usually saddled Judy, the special horse that was our only means of transport and rode over to collect the mail.

One day he was busy in the opposite corner of the farm, so Mum harnessed Judy to the sulky which was a sort of cart with two high steel-rimmed wooden wheels with a seat across it that was big enough for Mum, my brother and me to sit on.  Off we went, down the hill, across the creek and up to the gate in the fence that separated our farm from the neighbour's.  Mum climbed out of the sulky, opened the gate, led the horse and sulky through the gate which she shut before climbing back into the sulky and setting off along a bush track to the mailbox.

On the way back all went well till Mum had led us through the open gate.  While she was shutting it something "spooked" our usually patient Judy  and she took off at full speed with the sulky bouncing on the rocky and uneven ground.  Our frightened screaming only scared her even  more till finally one wheel crashed over a big rock and the sulky overturned.  Fortunately we  were unhurt as we actually jumped from the falling sulky and landed on our feet  but cried very loudly with fright.  Poor Judy who was fastened to the sulky, fell on her side and in her struggle to stand up broke the shaft of the sulky and tangled the harness.

As for our poor mother, she was petrified.  Putting her hands around her mouth she shouted "Coo-ee!" so loud that Dad, working in the furthest corner on the farm,  heard her and knew something dreadful must have happened.  He gave an answering "Coo-ee!"  and started running.  He had often won the hundred yards sprint at sporting events, but this was long distance.  Through the bush, over the fences, across the ploughed fields he ran.  Mum, who had not stopped calling long enough to hear Dad answer her call kept calling  "Coo-ee, coo-ee, coo-ee!"  Every time Dad heard her frantic voice he was spurred to greater speed.   Down the hill he ran, over the creek he leapt and panted up the hill on the other side till he could see us, apparently unharmed.  Mum was still calling, we were still crying and poor Judy was still struggling.

We all clung together while Dad caught his breath and we stopped sobbing.   After lots of kisses and cuddles and checking us for cuts and bruises we all calmed down and noticed Dad now had a big smile on his face.  He knew God had protected his precious little family, but he could not help being amused by the way his normally placid little wife had so thoroughly panicked  that her voice was hoarse from coo-eeing.

When Dad unharnessed Judy and spoke soothingly to her she looked so abjectly subdued we all knew that if she could speak she would have said a heartfelt "Sorry".  The sulky was a sad mess so we left it where it was and all walked home carrying the mail and praising our wonderful God who had so providentially protected us from what might have been a terrible accident.

How privileged we are to know and worship such a loving, caring, forgiving Saviour God.

What a privilege it is to have parents who love God and have helped us to love and worship Him.  What a privilege it is to be able to talk with God any time of the day or night.  There is no need to "coo-ee" loudly to get His attention. We can do it in a whisper.  Let us remember to thank Him.

This article is Copyright © 2014 by Maye Porter.  Used by permission.

Home > Online Magazine > Online Magazine: Edition 55 - Autumn (March-May) 2014 > A Mail Day Adventure (by Maye Porter)