Till a few days ago, I believed that Ron Fred Douglas would still livefar from Germany on the other side of the globe, in Western Australia near Perth in a nursing home. And to think about him alive, that’s givin me a good secure feeling, knowing this mentally strong man, as such I meet him 1987, would live on our planet at least as long as I would do, me being 69. The last time I spoke to Ron on the phone must have been several month before he died on the 8th of February 2010 with 93.
While talking to Ron on the phone, he passed the receiver on to his daughter Jay, to speak to me also. She had come from the States to visit her father. Jay and I talked a while together in a friendly way, we laughed about Life us such and she told me things about her life and Ron. I wanted to know about his physical beings. So, after that call, I got a picture about Ron’s Life at his new home and surroundings, and the way he was rooming about, frightening the nurses, in his wheelchair, to reach the river or lake, so Jay told me. Ron seemed to be like he used to be in good spirits. And that’s how I remember him today.
I don’t know why I had not been informed about Ron’s death but that does not matter. Not knowing about his death, till a couple of days ago, extended his Life in my mind for two more years longer and this wonderful gift I would not like to miss.
I am thankful to have met any single person belonging to Ron’s family, like his son Scot and his Wife and children, which are grownups by know. In my upholstery job, I worked with Ron’s grandson Douglas, the son of Ron’s daughter Peta, in front of their house on Mt. Pleasant. And Ron took me to the Yacht-Club where I went sailing, having afterwards a fine dinner. And I did ride Doug’s bike around the hill, going shopping and getting to know some neighbors, or dreamt under a lemon tree in the backyard, or looking down the hill, seeing in the distance the silhouette of Perth arise out of the morning fog.
And later in the evening doing some cooking, and having late night dinner together and a little sundowner and talking about fixing the world. And so the Weeks went by. Than Ron had moved to another place where I visited him again 1995 and we continued what we had started in 1987. We became true friends.
And I remember one of Rons birthday we celebrated only with woman, all Rons good friends, in an italian restaurant in Perth. Ron and I feeling great, like „two cocks of the walk“.
And a special memory I keep in mind for Ron’s daughter Peta, without her I would have most likely never meet Ron and his colorful, heartwarming family and that would have made my life less rich. And I also like to remember when Peta came over to Germany to see me. I haven’t forgotten her and I hope she will forgive me, if I ever treated her wrong, because it was not meant to be to turn out that way.
There are some fine stories to tell about Ron and me and Life in Australia from his point of view – for instance: driving to Exmouth, I drove all the way and when Ron fell asleep, Joy whispered with a smile: “Com on Peter step on it!” Ron woke up and grumbled: “You drive too fast.”
The sun went down and hit me the last Hour constantly right in the eye. Behind me Joy and her little dog, who was blowing me his bad breath in the nose and lick my cheeks and neck. But he loved the Brandy and Joy gave him some and at ones he played dead.
We also drove ones to Geralton, where Ron had a bookkeeping job to do. Keeping a farmer save from the Tax department, or helping at the Lions-Club the disabled – if I ever get around writing all those stories, well – I don’t know. But I will do that, if the good spirit of Ron is with me and he will say to me in a dream: Yes Peter, do it, write!
Ron and I exchanged over the years some letters. In a letter from August 2003 he wrote: “I hope to see you again Peter before I visit the last house”.
Sorry Ron – I could not make it – but we meet again… don’t know where don’t know when… but we will meet again some sunny day… Ron.
Let’s say goodbye with a smile, dear,
Just for a while, dear, we must part.
Don’t let the parting upset you,
I’ll not forget you, sweetheart.
We’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when,
But I know we’ll meet again, some sunny day.
Keep smiling through, just like you always do,
‚Til the blue skies drive the dark clouds far away.
So will you please say hello to the folks that I know,
Tell them I won’t be long.
They’ll be happy to know that as you saw me go,
I was singing this song.
After the rain comes the rainbow,
You’ll see the rain go, never fear,
We two can wait for tomorrow,
Goodbye to sorrow, my dear.
My best wishes to the Family Douglas, you will be always welcome at my home.
Peter A. Bruns
PS: Two mates and one girl on the beach again. Ron, Joy and Peter near Exmouth WA 1995 „gone fishin“ – good old times…
And thats me today 2011 in Germany, thinking about good old australien times.