Monday, July 20, 2015

Memories of Mum

Jean Christina Maude Nerdal (nee Smith)

January 4th 1934 ~ June 4th 2015

This is my twenty two year old Mum and I in Norway in 1956. Mum was an Australian nurse who married a Norwegian carpenter who had come to Australia in 1951 to work on the Snowy Mountains Hydro Electric Scheme. They met at a dance at the Burns Club in Canberra and were married a few months later. 

Then they set off to Norway on a long cruise. Once they arrived they lived with Dad’s parents at a property called “Nerdal” in a place called Dalselv in northern Norway, just south of the Arctic Circle. Dad is the youngest of ten siblings and he had a huge family in the region around Dalselv. 

I was born in the nearby town of Mo i Rana in March 1956. Mum was forced to learn Norwegian fast as very few of my father’s family spoke English, and his parents certainly didn’t! 

In September 1957 my parents brought me on a long cruise to Australia on the Orcades.

We settled in Deakin in Canberra where my mum had not only her parents but her seven siblings. Dad’s brother Reidar also lived in Canberra. He had come to Australia in 1950 also to work on the Snowy.

Once I was a bit older Mum returned to nursing doing weekend night duty so Dad could care for me on the weekends while she worked and slept. 

How do you fit 81 years of life into one blog post? You don’t of course..........

Mum’s only been in heaven for just over six weeks now so maybe I need a little more time to sort my thoughts and her photos and I’ll get back to this subject when I have. 

For those of you who have a mum earth-side; call her, write to her, visit her, take your kids to see her, send her flowers for no reason at all and if you don’t speak to her and haven’t seen her for years, bridge that gap while you can. Life’s too short, and there are no phones in heaven and plenty of time for regrets here. Elizabeth Kubler Ross referred to “unfinished business” to do with death and dying. Just a tip from me. Make sure you don’t have any. Then your loved one really can rest in peace, and so can you.

Love and hugs till next time. 


PS Love you and miss you Mum xxx