Born and bred 90 years on

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - SAM SMALL­BONE

BORN and bred Moss­man woman Elaine Pat­ter­son is get­ting ready to cel­e­brate her 90th birth­day on Novem­ber 30 and is con­vinced that life was dif­fer­ent in the ’good old days’.

“I’ve lived in Moss­man most of my life, 90 years is a long time and I’ve seen a lot of changes to the town,” she said.

Back in the ’good old days’ where there were no TV’s, com­put­ers, mo­bile phones or elec­tric­ity, Mrs Pat­ter­son grew up liv­ing a full and happy life in Moss­man.

“I use to make men’s trousers and we had no technology like we have to­day, back then you had to make your own fun,” she said.

“We were a tighter com­mu­nity too. You never did any­thing on your own. Ev­ery­one use to ride bi­cy­cles down to the beach be­cause there were not a lot of cars, we use to spend half our time at swim­ming at the river, and we never had to worry about crocodiles or stingers.”

As a teenager Mrs Pat­ter­son would go to a ’dance’ which was held ev­ery Fri­day night at the com­mu­nity hall which the en­tire fam­ily would at­tend.

“Mum and Dad would play cards and we would dance and ev­ery Satur­day night we went to the pic­tures,” she said.

In the evenings Mrs Pat­ter­son would go for walks and would see ev­ery­one in the com­mu­nity out on their ve­ran­das or in their gar­dens so­cial­is­ing.

“There use to al­ways be some­one out­side to talk to but now you see no­body. Peo­ple are too busy look­ing at their TVs,” she said.

“I grew up in a much bet­ter time than to­day. We could leave our homes open all day with­out any­thing be­ing taken and we could walk the streets day or night with­out be­ing as­saulted..

The Moss­man Gorge was a pop­u­lar place for teenagers to swim in the sum­mer and they would pick man­goes walk­ing up the main road and eat them on the way home.

Mrs Pat­ter­son is a past pres­i­dent of the lo­cal bowls and hor­ti­cul­ture clubs.

“I’ve had a very happy life and I have lived in a very car­ing com­mu­nity. I had a great hus­band for nearly 60 years and five beau­ti­ful chil­dren. I feel blessed,” she said.

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