This is my place in time.
It’s an odd feeling when I revisit a location that I vaguely remember from childhood. Unless I went there on a regular basis, I often find that my memory has blurred somewhat. I can sometimes remember little details like a suspension bridge over a river, only to not be able to place which of a myriad of little country towns that particular bridge belonged to.
I’ve been to York, in the Western Australian Wheatbelt, a bunch of times during my childhood. We’d go for the day sometimes, or pass through on our way to somewhere else, like Beverley. I have memories of Beverley, as a schoolfriend’s family had a farm out there. We used to go up in the holidays and visit the country show, pouring far too much money into those 20c coin pusher machines (you know, the ones that are essentially pokies for children); and stocking up on Bertie Beetle showbags.
My family also went to a farmstay out that way a couple of times. I have distinct memories of running through the barley fields with my siblings, and (when staying with the daughter of the farmstay owners) of tearfully hiding in the library of the Beverley area school to avoid having to play ball sports at recess. Ugh, ball sports.
To get to Beverley, we almost certainly would have gone through York.
The last time I remember being up there would have been about 25 years ago.
Twenty – FIVE years ago. I know! When did I start being able to drop twenty years into a conversation so casually? Yuck.
Still, you would think that somewhere in all those visits, even across the revoltingly large void of time, somehow this very distinct, can’t miss it on the high street, movie set style building would have stuck in my memory. Knitting itself somewhere in there, perhaps into the muddled memories of another town. Or at least in the back pages of one of our many family photo albums.
My subconscious has decided that it’s important for me to retain such tidbits as the type of buttons used to power the animations at “It’s a small world” which closed in the late 80’s; the entire layout of the Subiaco Pavillion markets circa 1996; and the school holiday activities (and shopping centre layouts) of Centrepoint and Midland Gate in the early 1990s.
Why I can’t remember ever seeing a fancy town hall with a clock on it, in a town I would have been to a good 10 times, is beyond me.
Here, patient reader, is the York Town Hall, built in 1911. We visited it in August 2016 on a trip out to the country to photograph the canola fields. I’ve included it here for the My place in time project.