Spindrift and Footprints by Pattie Leighton
This is the story of how two cultures blend in the early days of settlement on the spectacular coastal fringe of Southern Australia.

When I attended primary school, my first teacher introduced the class to the little song:

Oh how I wish that I could be
A little Aborigine.
I’d feed on lizards, frogs and snakes
And not on lollypops and cakes
I’d play in the bush all day long
And paddle in the billabong

I spent most of my spare time playing in the bush. The bush was my world. This song and its tune have remained in my memory for over seventy years. It was one of the few things taught to me at school about the Indigenous People of Australia.

Many years later, in 1962, my family moved to the south coast of Western Australia and settled on a bush block. This land had been released to ‘settlers’ to clear the bush for agriculture. This was a challenge. The varied mallee bush was fascinating and the wildlife unusual. We were able to leave sections of remnant bush and swamps on the property and protect the fresh water creek that has turtles and freshwater crayfish.

The Wellstead District Historical & Heritage Committee formed in 985. At first we only recognised the history of European settlement on this South Coast region. Like many other part of Australia it was not until the 1990’s that we all started to ‘wonder’ and enquire as to who were the Indigenous custodians of this region. I am very grateful for the generous sharing of cultural stories from the local Nyoongar Elders. I especially appreciate the support and friendship from Harley Coyne and Vernice Gillies.

We all share appreciation and wonder of the wild beauty of this land with its extraordinary plants, animals, lakes, rivers, mountain ranges as well as the coast and offshore islands.

However, as acclaimed Nyoongar author Kim Scott stated ‘it is now time for Truth Telling”.

It is time to write and speak about those historical events on the south coast of WA that contain so much hurt, grief and hardship. It is time to bring out the stories of the last 200 years. This will help us all to move forward together with a deeper understanding of our past.

This fictional story with fictional characters is set around this time of great change and hardship. Hopefully we can all connect with a common goal to look after this unique and extraordinary land, honour its heritage and protect its rich biodiversity for future generations.

Paperback 2018 edition

* This book is in pre-loved condition and may have signs of age. Some pre-loved books may have writing or creases to pages. We always do our best to ensure the pricing of the book is relative to its condition. If you are concerned about the potential condition of a pre-loved book please send us a message before purchasing

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Spindrift and Footprints by Pattie Leighton

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