I stumbled across this inspirational story about two twin sisters celebrating their 99th birthday.
Born in Burrangong, January 2, 1916, twins Clare Wood and Mavis Eldridge today celebrate their 99th birthday.
They grew up in a family of 16 siblings, with six boys and 10 girls.
Clare’s earliest memory is going to school and paddling the creek to get there.
She recalled her schooling in Burrangong being rather tough, as the school’s nuns used to tie her left hand behind her back and made her write with the right hand because left-handed people were frowned upon in those days.
Her fondest memory was attempting to ride a bike, saying she always use to fall off and land in the thistles.
Mavis didn’t like attending the convents.
“Prayers in, prayers out, prayers all the time,” Mavis said.
“I didn’t like the sisters.”
The twins have never driven a vehicle, and neither had their husbands; walking everywhere, including into town for their shopping on a Saturday.
The pair now live at the Southern Cross Retirement Village, but prior to that, Clare lived on Temora Road and Mavis on Murringo Road.
Clare can remember the Japanese walking past her house after the prisoner-of-war camp breakout at Cowra in 1944.
When asked what significant changes occurred in her life, Mavis said, “there’s been a bloody lot of changes: TV, cars, electricity and radio”.
“Before we used kerosene lamps and wooden ovens.”
Mavis said she had no plans for next year, saying she might be up ‘there’ or done ‘here’, while Clare took a more optimistic approach.
“Hopefully I’ll win the lotto and travel the world,” she said.
Clare and Mavis said what made them live long lives was lots of walking and hard work, including cleaning schools and houses, cooking for priests, nuns and the Young Hotel, chopping wood and carrying buckets.
Mavis joked that she plans to spend her birthday getting drunk… on tea, and will share a cake with Clare and their daughters.