Forest Hill, Queensland
Population - 394
It was such a beautiful Autumny day (although it was Summer) - warm sun, cool breeze - my sister decided against doing her bookwork for the day and go for a drive.
So she bundled up our Mum and I and we took to the road.
We weren't really sure where we were headed - just a general direction.
We'd heard of a nice little shop in Forest Hill so we wound our way through the Lockyer Valley - a vegie bowl for Australia.
Acres and acres of fertile fields under irrigation - Okra, cucumbers, corn, pumpkins seemed to be ready for picking
(I wonder where all that Okra was going coz I'm pretty sure Australia isn't eating it!).
And then all of a sudden there was Forest Hill.
It's a tiny town but it was buzzing - 2 pubs, 2 cafes, a post office, a general store and a hairdresser.
Surprisingly a child day-care centre. Also a skate park, cricket ground, an State Emergency Depot, a fire station.
But no swimming pool!!
The War Memorial was in a well-tended little spot next to a park.
More than any other memorial I have seen I was taken by how many men from the same families served during the war.
5 McKees, 4 Brimblecombs, 3 Swans, 3 Reids, 3 Hansens, 4 Logans in WWI and 4 Logans again in WWII - 3 killed.
Incredibly 97 men from this region served in WWI.
In the early 1900s the district had a population of 600.
I find it unimaginable to think how families could bear all their sons away at war and how the community at large
coped with 1/6 of its population gone.
Not just the lack of young, strong men to work the farms and businesses in the region, but the impact on the collective psyche
of their best and brightest away in foreign lands undergoing god know what horrors.
But that's war, right?
photos - phone, February, 2015