Kunapipi had already forgotten who she was.
She was excited to be in this new environment.
In one sense everything was amazing, in that just smells, touch and sights were all an adventure.
In another sense she felt lost; alone and a misfit?
The house that she lived in with her parents was a terrace house; two bedrooms upstairs and two rooms downstairs. There was no bathroom and the toilet was outside. There was rows and rows of these little houses all joined. There was a cobble stoned alleyway at the back separating other rows of these houses. There were no gardens and the front of the houses were on the street.
Anne was bathed in a large enamel bowl.
Her parents went to a central bath and paid to use these facilities.
When she was almost three years old her parents were packing to move.
Her mother more angry, impatient and upset than usual: screamed at her almost continually!
They boarded an ocean liner.
This was just so exciting.
Words do not describe how enthralling this experience was.
The docks; the ship; the cabin; and just being on the ocean.
Kunapipi/Anne just loved the sea voyage despite being very young and restricted to being chaperoned.
She loved the water; the sea life; and the rocking of the boat. Visiting different ports: Everything so new.
Just the wonder of seeing things for the first time.
Arriving in Australia, Anne/ Kunapipi felt as if she had been here before But of course she couldn’t have!?
Anne had flying dreams as a child but of course she didn’t label them as such: Just loved going to bed and enjoying flying around everywhere.
While on board the ship she would fly around with Undines ( water elementals). They would tell her stories: They no longer associated with adult humans. They had grown to dislike humans as had the other elementals and nature spirits because the human race showed no respect for Mother Earth or other life forms.
The woman who gave birth to Anne didn’t want her or like her because she was a girl The woman wanted a boy but was unable to have more children. She saw Anne as someone she could abuse (both physically and emotionally) and feel superior to. This lasted for almost 64 years – not something to elaborate on. The relevance of this is that Kunapipi/Anne had no confidence or self-esteem.
The wonderful thing about Australia when Anne was a child was that the population of the whole of Australia was only 12 million.
Anne loved being in nature with the animals birds and nature spirits.
Anne was empathic although this term didn’t exist when she was a child. The term for it then was insane and or deviant. She knew when someone was lying and was in her mid-teens before she realized that others didn’t know when people were lying.
She could feel the emotional horror of other life forms. Birds that had to kill their young because thanks to the humans there wasn’t enough food for them.
Moths throwing themselves at windows because they were drawn to the light inside.
And because she was literally forced to consume meat ( The same meal was put in front of her for breakfast, lunch and tea until eaten– along with numerous bashings) She would have night mares, dreaming she was an animal in the slaughter house.
Her mother continually screamed at her that she would have her certified insane and put in a mental institution ( This would have been possibly in those days.)
Kunapipi/Anne would speak to other life forms. She presumed she was reading expressions and body language. For this she was ridiculed and told not to anthropomorphize animals:
Seriously why would she want to presume other creatures were human?
At age seven while walking with her mother to the dental hospital, Anne had a flash that time was just a dimension and saw herself as an adult with her own daughter?
This same year they bought chickens at the Royal Show: The chicks had been dyed different colours: Anne named all the chickens and watched them grow. When she first had to collect eggs she asked if they were harming a new born chick and was told that the eggs would never become chickens?
Then came the day when “Henny Penny” was served up for dinner!
And of course served to Anne for breakfast, lunch and tea for four days until Anne finally ate “Henny Penny”: Then vomited!
In high school they had to dissect frogs!!!!!!!
Anne never understood why some things were classed as vermin: even though she was told they spread germs; it felt wrong.
Anne went to church; and actually taught Sunday school in her early teens.
She found religion strange and contradictory but presumed it was just her because she was “useless; a failure; a disappointment: neither use nor ornament: couldn’t do anything right:” (As she had been constantly told this by her mother for as long as she could remember.)
In her teens, Anne learned that animals were tortured in the name of science and when she expressed horror she was told it was to save humans who were the only species that mattered.
At one time, she hid a dog in a church which “friends” of the family were going to shoot for going in to the chicken run. Sadly, they couldn’t stay there forever and the dog was shot!
Anne was a victim of bullying and tricks.
She was invited to a party that didn’t exist.
She also choreographed and rehearsed a dance routine when she was eight with another eight year old called Sandra. When the day of the performance came Sandra danced something completely different than they had rehearsed, making it look as if Anne had forgotten the routine.
Anne never understood why people were cruel, dishonest and self-centred.
Nor did she understand why people were so thoughtless and wasteful. No one recycled back then.
In primary school the class was asked to write an essay entitled “My Wish”
Anne wrote that she wished people would care more about looking after nature and the planet than money. The head master wrote “Good girl” on her essay. Anne was embarrassed at being so different.
In her twenties Anne became aware of the horrors of factory farming and became a vegetarian. She was married with children so her mother couldn’t stop her.
She still cooked meat for her family but she cooked vegetarian meals for them as well.
As an adult she put food and water out for the birds.
People would lecture her, saying that she should not feed wild birds because they had to get their own food.
Yet humans had not only chopped down the trees that were the homes and food sources for birds. They bituminized and concreted so the carnivores couldn’t get worms: Humans killed mice, so the birds couldn’t kill mice to eat. Hence the larger carnivores like crows, magpies and kookaburras, killed smaller birds for food.
Another thing that upset Anne was the foxes The ones she saw looked so emaciated They were brought to Australia by the humans who then complained about what pests they were continually culling them. Sadly culling was probably the kindest thing because there was no food for these poor creatures.
And then there was “road kill”!
One morning a male magpies was singing at her door but he didn’t want the food she gave him. She knew something was wrong and later found his partner squashed on the road in the next street.
Not long after this the tree on the footpath opposite her house was chopped down. She never knew why because it wasn’t in the way of anything. There were three magpie just staring at the stump of the tree that had once been their home!
Sometimes she thought that it was a pity that she couldn’t continually run over the humans that deliberately ran over animals, birds and reptiles until they were unrecognisably squashed to the bitumen.
Seven decades past while Anne tried her best to fit in and was frustrated that she couldn’t.
Instalment three on the 4th of September 2017