Australian stories

A Belgian Pom in Oz

Dear friends,

In the middle of my marketing campaigns and promotions for our amazing bags, and inspired by the cultural choc, oops! I mean shock! that awaited me here in Australia, I have decided to jump into a more challenging exercise: to write about our life. The challenge being that

  1. (being a Belgian French speaker) I am going to write in English

  2. you are all busy people and are bombarded by hundreds of newsletters already

  3. consequently I need to be as entertaining and concise as possible

So here we go…. (please be patient, it may take a few attempts!)

A Belgian Pom in Oz

Having lived 15 years in the UK, I feel I can call myself a Pom [at least until the UK is still an EU country]. It also works as a reference to my country’s speciality, les Pommes frites. Besides, I act like a pom, listening to Ken Bruce from Radio 2 on my laptop, bloody ‘ell! 

For my French speaking readers, a “pom” is what Australians call English immigrants, or just English people. I found several theories for the origin of the word “pom”: according to many it comes from pomegranate as rhyming slang for immigrant (alluding to the English immigrants’ red cheeks); some say it comes from “pommes de terre” as English immigrants eat loads; my favourite is that it is an acronym for Prisoners Of Mother England or Prisoners Of her Majesty.


Let me first show you where we live.

home at Urunga

Home: four lovely Provence style buildings around a lawn with an acacia and many exotic plants that I couldn’t name due to Belgian ignorance.


We occupy two of the buildings: number 1 is kitchen/dining room/office; number 2 hosts our bedroom, the bathroom and a teeny tiny sitting room, like a lovely boudoir, with a settee and the television.

Someone will say, blimey! with all this vegetation, there must be loads of creepy crawlies! How do you cope?


I refuse to photograph any of the spiders that Steve has had to kill for me recently. I have managed to get rid of some myself. I worry a lot as summer hasn’t started yet. Who knows how bigger they can get!?


It is extremely quiet and peaceful. There is a variety of plants and quirky corners, an enchanting retreat in the bush…

… the beach is only a 15 minutes walk on a road boarded by lined Macadamia trees, acacias and gum trees. I haven’t met any children or kangaroos on my, [cough cough] daily walk. Actually I haven’t been in touch with any children at all since my arrival! While roos and wallabies, they own the place!

walk to the beach

A long deserted beach at Hungry Head. Steve heard a story that early settlers landed on that beach when their ship was wrecked in a storm. They were so scared to get poisoned by eating any indigenous food that most of them starved to death!

Hungry Head, Urunga

Wenonah beach

Love the way the elements all got together to form this fancy heart made of stone and shells…

and this wicked crab! Isn’t nature brilliant?

shells on the beach

READ Next: Chapter 1. The Princess and the pea (Click me!)

The post Australian stories appeared first on Steven Harkin.

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