Is this going to be my life for the next few years? Living in a couple of rooms, walking to my job as a gardener in Enfield or do I want some adventure?
Reading the local London newspapers, I see advertisements for emigrants to Van Diemen’s Land. That is a new British colony thousands of miles across the seas on the other side of the world. This might be my chance to eventually develop my own business rather than work for someone else.
After visiting the bounty immigrant office mentioned on the advertisements, I have now been assigned to Mr John Leake who lives in the Midlands in VDL. The immigrant agent told me Mr Leake was very important in VDL; he was a member of the Legislative Council and had the ear of the governor.
Surely a person of this stature would have need of a gardener and if I worked extremely well, maybe he could give me good references for future gardening jobs.
Travelling on the ship Fortitude with about 140 other immigrants, I arrived in Hobart Town early in 1855. Disembarking quickly, six of us were met by a servant of John Leake. George Jobson, who arrived with his wife Harriet and two young sons, was a coachman while both James Axton and I were gardeners.
It took two days by horse and cart to travel on the well worn road from Hobart to Campbell Town, a total of 82 miles. What was this property we were going to work at like?
My new adventure was about to begin.
This was my first story written in first person rather than third person. Two students commented mentioning the tense changed from past to present a couple of times. They also said I needed to get more of his feelings and thoughts rather than all the factual info. Maybe I am trying to include too much in a short story.
This is about my great great grandfather, William Chandler, who began the Chandler’s Nursery in Hobart. Read more about it here http://www.chandlersnursery.com.au/our-history.html
Readers: Where else could I improve this writing? As it is only going to be published on this blog, feel free to re-write whole paragraphs if you want.