January 1941 and Doug is off to RAAF Pearce for six weeks training. Just ground crew as poor vision rules Doug out of flying. Meets Doug Kevan from Norseman days. Station parades, gas masks and surviving in the tropics.
Doug’s cycling life starts in his early teens with the Malvern Star championships. Doug wins the Arrow Consistency Cup and gets his photo in local papers. In Coolgardie he races the Widgiemooltha-Coolgardie (75km). In Norseman it is the longer Norseman-Higginsville (129km). In Kalgoorlie as Secretary for the Eastern Goldfields Cycling Club helps organise the Menzies to Kalgoorlie. Many tales of Hubert Opperman, a later friend and political colleague of Doug’s. In later years Doug was patron of the League of WA Wheelmen from 1959-1976.
Thanks to the Boys Employment League and a bit of good luck after a careless mistake, Doug gets a job with C J McAlinden’s Display and Advert Service. Lucky escape from air tank refilling accident. Doug reminisces about the businesses of the day.
Doug tells of the comics he read as a child and of his time at Perth Boys School. We hear of headmaster Tommy Chandler, teachers Bill “Skippy” Skipworth, Hal “Tinny” McKail, Pud Stallwood, Jock Campbell and Ted Huck. Doug appears in the paper.
The family moves to Hay Street in the city, then Hay Street East. A change to farm life out at Muchea then back to Vic Park in Perth before Herdsman’s Parade, their home for several years. During this time we meet Madame Zingara-Phrenologist, and dentist Harcourt Ellis.
The family arrives in WA and lives first in South Fremantle and then to McMaster Street, Vic Park (McMaster Street was named after Joan’s grand-uncle) and finally to East Cannington. Doug starts schooling at Perth Boys School, stories of train travel and life at the Cash home.