Saturday, May 19, 2007
Thursday, May 3, 2007
Tuesday, May 1, 2007
Monday, April 30, 2007
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Saturday, April 28, 2007
Thursday, April 26, 2007
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
In October 2003, I took my own family back to India on holiday and we had our photograph taken in almost the same spot. Our mother's ashes are buried near the base of a huge Bengal mast tree, about ten metres from where this picture was taken. As an orphan who was brought up by English nuns in the Convent of St Mary the Virgin in Poona (now Pune, western India) our
Strange. The present up the top wasn't wrapped. And judging by the shape, Santa had made a terrible mistake. I hadn't asked for a soccer ball. I was horrified when I pulled it out and realised from its clammy feel that it was a fresh lettuce. Next up was a cauliflower. Then carrots. And oranges, with that unmistakable fragrance. The deeper I delved into the stocking, the quicker grew the panic.
Not a single "real" present. Just fruit and vegetables. Wonderful produce, I admit now, but when you're a little fella, the only place for that sort of stuff is in a salad bowl on the dining table - not in a Christmas stocking. Santa had gone bananas - literally and metaphorically.
I didn't burst into tears, but I must have been teetering on the brink. I didn't panic, but I'll admit I was bloody close to having coronary failure. So I did the next best thing and woke my mother.
She just shook her head and said something along the lines of: "That's just a prank by your brothers''. Yep, my three elder siblings had - as we say in the trade - got me good.
They had waited for me to fall asleep. They had waited for the stocking to be filled with all the things on my list to Santa. Then, under cover of darkness, they had removed each present and hidden them under my bed, substituting them with the best, greenest, freshest produce from the dahlis (dollies, the Anglo-Indian families called them). After a few minutes, I could see the funny side, but I knew I'd never become a greengrocer.
To read the rest of this feature article, go to The Great Christmas Surprise.
Saturday, April 21, 2007
The way he told it, Dad would always have at least one big fan at work each week.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
This weblog is a concerted attempt by four brothers (above) to document our family history. Keith, Michael, Brian and David McMahon all live in different cities, hence the decision to start a blog. Instead of each one of us emailing information and photographs to the others, we've decided to use the internet to pool our resources. The creation of this blog will give each of us access to an evolving project.
Not only do we want to document what we know of our family history; we also want to research and record the stories of our ancestors.
We are the sons of Phyllis Mary (nee Reade) and Alfred Percy Collins McMahon. This picture was taken in Adelaide in December last year, at a family wedding. And this is the first step in a project that all four of us are about to undertake. Watch this space as we chronicle the clan.
Alfred Percy Collins McMahon 28.11.1910, Calcutta, India
Phyllis Mary Reade 13.09.1912, Bangalore, India
Keith McMahon 03.07.1941, Calcutta, India
Michael McMahon 27.09.1944, Calcutta, India
Brian McMahon 25.09. 1946, Calcutta, India
David McMahon 27.10.1956, Calcutta, India