For the past week or so it’s been boiling hot across New South Wales with some towns recording 47 degrees celsius, thats 116 degrees fahrenheit.
Here in my home town temperatures have peaked at around 38 celsius, that’s 100.5 fahrenheit, far too hot to be too active outside in the sun.
Lazing around inside with the air conditioner set at a comfy 24degrees C, my thoughts turned to a winter conversation I once had with Stanley Jack, my father in law, when I was moaning about how cold it could get here.
Our conversation went something like this,” Mate,” Stan said to me,” you haven’t lived through a cold winter like the one we had in 62. We had the best snow ever recorded.”
I must have looked a little skeptical because he disappeared inside and a short time later emerged with a box of Kodak slides.
“Have a look at these mate and you’ll see what I mean.”
Stan had marked the back of each slide with the date and location of each shot and I noted they had all been taken on 21st August, 1962.
After looking at his slides, I decided that I’d never again complain about winters in Goulburn. Of course, now I’m fully acclimatised it shorts and sandals all year long.
Researching archived copies of the then local newspaper, The Evening Post, for this blog revealed that the snowfalls on 21st August, 1962 were the heaviest since 1923. The railway line between Goulburn and Crookwell had been closed because of snow drifts up to six feet deep and postmen had abandoned mail delivery.
The Evening Post also reported that road traffic on the Hume Highway(the major artery between Sydney and Melbourne) was at a standstill betweenYass and Bargo, a distance of 130 miles. Visibility around Goulburn was down to 100 yards and shopkeepers in Auburn Street, the towns main thoroughfare, had employees on store roofs sweeping away the snow.
1962 was four years before the introduction in Australia of decimal currency and the Evening Post of 22nd August, 1962 revealed that ‘Breakfast at Tiffanys,’ starring Audrey Hepburn was showing at the Goulburn Odeon movie theatre, a fifteen ounce can of Greenseas Chunky Tuna was on special at 3 shillings and nine pence, that’s forty cents in todays money and an eighteen ounce packet of Lux Detergent was two shillings and eleven pence, thirty cents in todays terms. How things have changed.
Back in those days, Stan never went anywhere without his trusty Yashica 135mm range finder camera loaded with Kodachrome 25ASA slide film and his trusty Sekonic light meter.
Before Stan passed away, he gave me his trusty Yashica outfit and his slide collection and he recommended that I followed his practice of always having my camera near at hand, preferably loaded with Kodak slide film.
In Stans day, exposed Kodak slide film was sent by post to Melbourne for processing, the cost of which was included in the film’s original purchase price. The mounted slides were returned to the sender in a neat yellow plastic box.
I’ve scanned some the slides Stan took on that cold August day almost 55 years ago. Some of them are showing their age but they are surviving well.
Makes me wonder what many of our digital images will look like in 2072. If we have the technology to read the files that is.
So, here are some of Stan’s images of that memorable day back way back when.
I’ve added a shot of his trusty Yashica and his Sekonic light meter, just for nostalgia’s sake together an image of the slides.
I feel a lot cooler at the moment after looking at these images. I hope the feeling lasts the day.
Hoo roo for now.