• Photograph si498
  • Photograph si494
  • Photograph si495
  • Photograph si496
  • Photograph si497

My father was born in Chandaochedzy, Manchuria; my mother in Chingan, Manchuria and I was born in Shanghai. Our nationality was Polish until we were naturalized as Australian citizens. We arrived in Sydney Australia in July 1948 by Cathay Pacific Airlines. I was 5 years old at the time. My father was a civil engineer and worked for an American company in Shanghai. When we arrived in Sydney we stayed at the Metropole Hotel. Shortley after we met some friends who invited us to stay in their home in Woollahra. They helped us to understand how to cope and settle down. We found a small cottage to rent in Paddington and moved there while my dad looked for a job. He was able to get a job in a factory making Silent Knight refrigerators. In those days there was no help like there is now. You had to work and look after yourself and your family. Some rationing was still in place. I went to school at Sacred Heart School in Darlinghurst. My dad eventually got a job with an engineering company in Hunter St. Sydney. His engineering credentials were not recognised in Australia so he had to sit for the local exams and then he sat for the English Engineering exams. He passed all with flying colours. He worked on many projects including the Lucas Height Atomic facility. My family eventually bought a house in Punchbowl, where I went to the local catholic school, St. Jeromes. My father worked at his engineering job in the city till 1962 when he died. We were able to bring my grandparents to Australia in 1949. My mother was a housewife and later got a position at H.C.F. in the city. We had no trouble in settling in Australia and were very happy to do so.

Story details

Country of origin: 
Share on social media: