Christmas 2009

Twenty years ago my Shanghainese friend M experienced his first Christmas in Sydney. Quite excited by the prospect, and thinking of Chinese New Year in Shanghai, he expected crowds on the street. Instead he saw something like Elizabeth Street Surry Hills this morning.

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He was disappointed.

Later I went to South Sydney Uniting Church where there were a couple of distinguished visitors.

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Good to see Patricia Corowa back from Copenhagen too.

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The bus to Sirdan’s, from where we were to go to St Peters for Christmas lunch.

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The lunch. Nice bunch of people.

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Christmas Day

Morning:  to South Sydney Uniting.

Lunch: to Sirdan’s and then to a place in St Peters for the actual meal. Some of the people who were at Sirdan’s party in August.

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Sirdan’s Birthday

Weather forecast not so good however: Big wet: Christmas Day floods for NSW.

Was just sent a family story and posted it on Facebook.

A distant relative has just sent me a story from the 1834 Sydney Herald.

Seems my great-great…grandfather Jacob who commenced his life sentence in Sydney in 1822 (http://ninglunbooks.wordpress.com/early-last-century/about-the-whitfields/) was having a beer or three in a pub in Clarence Street on a Sunday afternoon when he complained of being robbed of seventeen silver shillings (quite a bit of cash then) by two guys, John Cochrane and Dennis Denees — free men. Joseph, a convict, was at the time a "servant" assigned to his son William (born 1812) who had arrived in Sydney as a child in 1826 — so this must have been before Jacob got his ticket-of-leave in 1834.

Seems there was some confusion about who did what, and Jacob ended up with seven days in solitary for "being in a public house tippling on Sunday."