Stories: Joan Dodd

Life at Coonamble

My sister is the Thelma Leonard and she told you about our life at the Pilliga Mission. I was younger than Thelma so I can’t remember much.

I got married and lived with Mum and Dad for years in Coonamble. Mr Dodd came from Warren. We went to school there – I met him at High School.

We had children and then we went out in the bush because my husband was a station hand. We lived out on the Station at Quambone until the kids were old enough for school. The Veechs’ were on the station and they wonderful to us. Marie Veech grew up with us. I had six children. They are grown up now. One lives in Coonamble, one in Dubbo and the others are in Sydney. They come and visit me now.

When the children were old enough for school we moved to town. My husband left the job out there and came to town and got a job with the Shire where he worked to 15 years before he died. I don’t go the Sydney much because I’ve been a bit unwell so the family come to visit me now.

I have a song the Aunty Selenea used to sing. I can only remember the chorus.

Nung wor sa nigguar been, nuggerar been woringay
Nung wor sa, nung wor da nuggerar been woringay
In yum ………………hum

They would start humming here and step around with the spears and dance. I think it means the men were out hunting and ‘woringay’ that ‘women’, were at home waiting for the men to come home with the food.

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