A snapshot from 1st Collie Guides

1st Collie Girl Guides, late 1920s

1st Collie Girl Guides, late 1920s

1st Collie Company was very proud to be known as the “Governor’s Own Company,” since  1915 when they were given that title by Governor Barron in honour of being one of the first country Guide Companies formed in WA.

Country Companies were established far and wide by Miss Grace Holder, the first State Commissioner, who was able to travel the state with her work as an S.P.C.A representative.

Guiding Service in 1935

This snippet of history was written (very maturely) in 1935 by Thelma Drawbridge, Patrol Leader, Magpie Patrol, 1st Collie Company.

On Saturday, August 8 1935 a merry band of our Guides set out for the bush in order to gather wood for an elderly lady who lived two miles out of town and had great difficulty in obtaining fuel.

Things were not to go our way that day. First the horse and cart did not arrive, which meant that we would have to carry the wood in our arms. Then some moisture gathered in the air and very inconsiderately fell. However, we started.

It was still early when we arrived so we set to work at once. The wood was luckily not too far away, though more than a trifle damp. After gathering a large pile we realised we had to chop it. Now chopping wood in hats and coats is not what I call an easy task, and in a very short time we called a halt, removed as much as we could and still remained respectable, and set to work again.

All this time it had been raining in a desultory fashion, but now it came down in an “I’ll- show-you-what-I-can do” so we knocked off and retired to the shelter of the veranda, where we learnt some new songs and had lunch. Luckily this did not have to be cooked. Fires have a knack of not wanting to light when the wood’s wet, you’re wet and everything is wet. (The Collie brand of wetness is unique).

By one o’clock it was still raining so after discarding shoes and socks we sallied forth with our trusty axes once more. We took turns with the axe and soon finished the pile in spite of the rain which continued to fall in torrents. We sincerely hope a few fence posts will not be missed…… they looked useless anyway. Those not occupied in collecting or chopping wood had a good time playing in puddles by the road side, despite Cap’s vision of having hordes of angry mothers descending on her. In fact everything went swimmingly (most appropriate word!) until some found themselves uncomfortably wet and retired to the house where our uniforms were dried in the oven.

A respectable pile of wood was chopped by 3.30 and we felt surrounded by a holy glow of virtue. So, happy and (comparatively) dry we investigated a stream running through the paddocks and paddled happily until it was time to go home.

After collecting our goods and chattels we wended our way home, munching on apples provided by our hostess and unanimously declaring that it been a lovely day and we would do it again, even if it was only to get wet.

This piece definitely reminds us of the old Guide Law: A Guide has courage and is cheerful in all difficulties!

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