“Well, I am pleased to say that your mother did the right thing by you, the properties that your late father owned were given to you in his will, and until you were old enough, she had it leased out to a neighbour for the past nine years. All of the income from the lease, after costs have been put into a trust account in your name, which you can access once you, have turned 21.
I had not attended the reading of the will, because I was away at the time, I was not aware until recently that your mother and I have been the joint executors of the will and manager of the trust, and I have spoken to your mother by telephone and she has signed over control fully to me.
What this means, is that you own a three properties, the main one is 409 acres on the south side of the Tod River between Sullivan Drive and the Gulf Coast, also there is 335 acres on the north side of the Tod River between Hirschausen Road and the gulf coast. The main property had the main house and sheds, plus three other houses, all which are currently rented out, plus the northern property has sheds and one house, with the house also been rented out.
The third and biggest property is 2,294 acres in size and is located on the west side of the township of Poonindie on the north and south sides of the Tod River, and it has a number of houses and sheds on it. As well as the income from the farm leases, you also have income from rent from the six houses, which comes to quite a lot of money, so you will be able to pay for all of your college and university studies, and still live comfortably.
You are also welcome to live here for as long as you wish, and Jacob and I will be around when ever you need us, and also Jacob’s Parents when they are home,” Uncle Nat announced to Aaron. “I lost count, how many acres did you say I own in total?” Aaron asked.
“It is a little over 3,038 acres, which may seem a lot to you, but here in Australia, that is quite a small holding of land,” Uncle Nat replied. “Some properties can be tens of thousands of acres, while pastoral properties in the north can be in the millions of acres,” I added, which surprised Aaron.
“Can I go and see the property at some time?” Aaron asked, “Yes, but I will have to arrange it with the farmer who currently leases the three properties,” Uncle Nat replied, “Hey Aaron, when is your twenty first birthday?” I asked out of curiosity, and Aaron smiled.
“Its on Saturday next week,” Aaron replied, “Wow awesome, we will have to have a big party to celebrate,” I replied happily. “As long as it does not disturb the neighbours, then yes you can have a party for Aaron’s birthday, maybe ask the neighbour's if they would like to attend, we can make it a BBQ dinner, with tennis and swimming, and I will invite a few of our colleagues to act as security for the night,” Uncle Nat said.
“Can we invite our parents and siblings too?” Chris asked, as he appeared from upstairs, on hearing the excitement of a party, and Uncle Nat turned to face Aaron, “It is up to you mate, it is your party?” he said quietly to Aaron, who nodded his head yes.
“Right boys, I will leave it up to you to organise the entertainment, but no strippers or anything MA rated, just some decent music will do, plus you can organise the decorations. Chris and Will, I will leave it up to you to invite your families, I will organise the food with Mrs Fogliani, and I will recruit some soldiers from the base to attend as security, and I will invite the neighbours on our street,” Uncle Nat said.
“Sounds like we are going to have a great party for you cousin,” I said to Aaron, who looked a little overwhelmed by all of this attention, and I gave him a sidewards hug for support. “Just relax and enjoy it mate, it is only once that you turn 21,” I said to him softly and he gave a slight nod of understanding and a small smile.
Uncle Nat indicated to me, that he wanted to speak to Aaron on his own, so I suggested to Chris and Will that we have a swim, so we headed upstairs to change, before heading outside, and we talked about what we could do for the party next week.
With the Tennis court already, having lighting that was one thing that we did not have to worry about and there is enough outdoor lighting on the outside of the house to cover all of the pool area. When Chris suggested setting up a mini golf course on the back lawn, we all agreed to the idea and climbing out of the pool and grabbing our towels, we began to plan where to put the course, and we discussed what to use for the golf holes.
First, we thought of soup cans, but then we decided that they are not big enough, and I suggested containers that we use the one-kilogram containers of Yoghurt, and the others agreed. We decided that I would check it tomorrow to see if it is the right size, and I knew that we had a few golf balls in a box in the garage, which we could use to make sure that it is correct.
Once we had come up with the plan, we headed back to the pool, where Aaron soon joined us, and we stayed in the pool for about half an hour before we decided to call it a night and head inside.
The next morning after Uncle Nat and the lads had left for the day, I lounged around until Aaron made an appearance, shortly after 9am, and I made him some breakfast, and read the paper while I waited for him to finish eating.
“What are your plans for today?” Aaron asked me as he finished he bowl of cereal, “Not much, I just have to do a bit of planning for the party, but nothing to difficult. Is there anywhere that you would like to go today?” I replied, “No, I just want to hang out with my awesome cousin, and get to know him some more,” Aaron replied smiling, and I just laughed at this.
“Ok, as you know this house is set back from the road, which could resolve any problems for any possible gate crashers to your party, but Uncle Nat does not want to take any chances, so he is arranging for the installation of high temporary fencing, all around the property. He is also installing steel shutters that will look decretive; to protect all of the front windows, and our ten closest neighbours will be invited to attend.
Along with them there will be Will’s parents, and Chris’s parents and younger brother, which will make ten plus how ever number neighbours turn up, and the party is set to start at 4 pm, to allow for people to have a swim in the pool, and some games of tennis, before it gets dark.
Because our road is a circuit road, we will be able to manage traffic easily, the only problem is that there is a public reserve behind a lot of our neighbour’s houses, so foot traffic would be harder to manage,” I said to Aaron. “How many security people is Uncle Nat arranging?” Aaron asked.
“Well last night he said about four, but we had a bit of a chat this morning, and he will be bumping up the numbers to twelve with another twelve on call in case they are needed, especially since the house backs onto the Nature Reserve,” I replied.
“It sounds like you and Uncle Nat have it all sorted, so we should not have any problems,” Aaron said to me, “We hope not, but…. This is just a thought, what about if we make it a lunchtime barbeque, that way we will be all finished before it gets dark, so that would stop us having any night time gate crashers,” I suggested.
When my mobile rang and I saw that it was Uncle Nat calling, I smiled, before answering the call. “You must have good ears, we were just talking about you,” I said into the phone, and Uncle Nat laughed. “All good, I hope,” Uncle Nat responded. “Of course Uncle, now we presume you have called for a good reason,” I said.
“Yes, I have some interesting good news; I didn’t want to say anything until it was definite and all finalised. With you and the lads having set up your own little science research group, I presume you are still looking for space to run it from?” Uncle Nat announced.
“Yes, although with me being away in the UK, we haven’t had a chance to sit down and discuss it any further, apart from deciding on a name,” I replied, “Well I have a solution for you, and it is close to home,” Uncle Nat said, “How close do you mean?” I asked.
“Very close, like just three kilometres away by road, or half that distance cutting through on the walking trails, it is just off Black Road near the primary school,” Uncle Nat replied, “Do you mean the scout hall?” I asked, “That is it, the Scout group has relocated to newer facilities, and when I saw an advertisement by the local council, calling for submissions for using the facilities, I put in a submission, which involved purchasing the land freehold, and it was accepted.
The property consists of three garages, and the main building, plenty of car parking spaces, which are also two basketball courts and a flagpole. The property has a post and wire fence around it, and the main building has a kitchen & lunch room, male and female toilets and showers, and administration area with a reception and three offices, and a large parade hall,” Uncle Nat announced.
“Wow, so you own it freehold?” I asked sounding very surprised, “No nephew, Kuishi Project owns it, with me as the Director of Management,” Uncle Nat replied. “Wow, that is awesome, when can we go and check it out?” I asked, “how about once the other lads have returned home from their studies, let’s keep it a surprise for them eh,” Uncle Nat replied.
After the call, I took a deep breath and smiled broadly. “Come on Cousin, we are going on a 1.5 km hike to check something out,” I announced to Aaron, who looked a little surprised and confused at the same time, and I just continued to smile.
Cutting through a gap between houses, which is part of the nature reserve, we soon crossed over a semi dry creek and entered the Sturt Creek Recreation Park, which is all natural bushland, and it was not long before we came out of the bush and onto a narrow bitumen road, with the former scout buildings in clear view.
“This is what Uncle Nat has bought for our Science Research group, which the lads and I call Kuishi Project,” I said to Aaron. “What does that mean?” Aaron asked me, “In Swahili, it means - To Survive, which is what we aim to so with Australia’s native flora and fauna, but it is also a link to when Will and I were both injured, and unable to move much, due to our injuries, during our Tasmanian Hiking trip,” I replied.
“Wow; that is interesting, so you are saying that the project now owns these buildings?” Aaron asked, “Yes, and the land immediately surrounding it. I can hardly wait to get inside to check out what they are like, and start planning where to set up things,” I replied, and we spent the next ten minutes having a good look around the buildings, before walking down the driveway towards the road.
While walking, I made a quick call to order a taxi to take us from Black Road in Flagstaff Hill to Warradale Army Base. “Do you have any ID with you?” I asked after ending the call, “No, my only ID is the Passport, which is at home in my room,” Aaron replied, and he smiled after saying that.
“Feels good, too finally call a place home, eh!” I said to him, and Aaron just smiled and nodded his head yes, as we sat down and waited for the arrival of the taxi. As we climbed into the Taxi, “We need to go to Kingfisher Circuit first, then to Warradale Barracks please driver, as we sat back for the short trip back to the house, where Aaron raced inside to get his passport, and returned to the Taxi.
“Did you lock the front door?” I asked to make sure that he had, and Aaron just nodded his head yes. “Ok Driver, main entrance of Warradale Barracks please, which is off Oaklands Road,” I said to the Taxi driver, and about five minutes later, I saw the driver indicate to turn left.
“No you don’t, that is longer, stay on Marion until you reach Oaklands Road then you turn left,” I said to the driver, and he turned off his indicator and continued northwards as I had instructed. A short time later, he turned left onto Oaklands Road and a minute later, we arrived at the Barracks front gate, where I told him to stop, and I paid him as we climbed out of the taxi, without thanking him.
“Some taxi drivers think they can go the long way around just to get a few extra dollars on fares,” I commented as the taxi drove away. “Before we go in, can we just walk back a little, I want to check out that storm drain or whatever it is,” Aaron said to me, and caught by surprise by the request I just shrugged my shoulders and indicated for him to lead the way.
Just 200 metres later, we arrived at the low bridge that crosses over what Aaron calls a storm drain, but in reality, it is the Sturt River, with concrete floor and sides, to keep the water from damaging riverbanks during storms. I watched my cousin as he paced out the width of the river from the footpath, beside the road. “Ten metres exactly at the bottom, and double that along the top,” Aaron said to me, before heading back towards the front gate of the barracks and I followed him, wondering what the heck, he did that for.
“Corporal Jacob S Blackwood and Mr Aaron N Tomlinson to see the Barracks CO, Colonel Nathaniel Blackwood, aka our Uncle,” I said to the front gate guard. “Yes Corporal, we have met before briefly, I just need to see Mr Tomlinson’s ID,” he responded.
“Aaron is my 3rd cousin from the UK but he is an Australian citizen by birth,” I explained as the guard looked at the passport, then at Aaron and back to the passport. “Very good, does the Colonel know that you are coming?’ the guard asked, “No, and please do not contact him, we just want to spring a surprise on him,” I replied, “Very well, you know the way,” the guard answered, and we walked through and headed to the Admin building.
“Hello Warrant Officer, is the boss busy?” I asked the CSM – Company Sergeant Major, as we entered the buildings reception area, and he took a quick glance at his desk before looking at me, “He has just got off the phone, so yes go ahead, nice to see you again Jacob,” the CSM replied smiling.
We headed down the hallway, and I knocked on the door, “Enter” we heard a voice bellow from inside, and I groaned, before opening the door slightly and peaking in, and there was a roar of laughter from both men inside the office, before opening the door fully and walking in, with Aaron following.
“Am I that scary to you, Corporal?” the Sergeant asked as we walked in and Aaron closed the door behind us, “With that voice, always, may we have a moment with our Uncle please Sergeant?” I replied smiling and moments later, he left the office.
“Hello boys, what brings this surprise visit?” Uncle Nat asked, “I remembered that Will and Chris have late lectures tonight, so I was wondering if I can have the keys to the new place, so we can check out the facilities,” I asked Uncle Nat.
“I guess that will be fine, just remember to lock it up tight when you leave. What have you both been up to today?” Uncle Nat replied.
Copyright August 2020 Preston Wigglesworth, All Rights are Reserved