The Heroic Escapades of Walter the Building.


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Walter was a happy building.

He enjoyed the wide-open spaces, fresh air and flowers.

Walter was only three stories and came from a heritage of pre-1900s sandstone structures.

He would often sit for hours, listening to Chester the Barn Shed tell stories about fantastic places where buildings of all shapes and sizes congregated together and made something called a ‘city’.

At first, Walter was quite apprehensive and unsure about all these strange tales. He then became inquisitive and decided to spread his walls and travel, to see if he could find a so called elusive and mysterious ‘city.’ He knew it might be dangerous, but the temptation was too much.

Walter’s journey took a long time. No one really knows how long. For years, his travels took him through many adventures. Too many to mention here.

Always searching.

Then, one day, when he had just about given up hope, he stumbled over a rise and saw it. There, before his own window sills, was a ‘city’ in all its glory.

Walter initially decided it would be safer to blend into the outer suburbs. However, residing with these new brick veneer houses, he realised that he didn’t quite fit in.

Moving further towards the city, he found areas occupied by hotels, pubs, retail outlets and shops. He didn’t feel quite comfortable in these places either.

Trying to fit in took its toll on Walter. He developed problems like cracking and rising damp. But Walter persisted. Learning as he went.

Many of the buildings he met on the way warned him not to travel too far into the city. They told him that buildings of his heritage were often demolished, to make way for bigger buildings.

As he gazed towards the city, the huge buildings seemed like they were beckoning to him. He knew he was running a risk, but he had to see these huge structures up close. Walter had travelled this far. He had to complete his journey.

As he got closer to the epicentre, the whole city oozed with power and strength. It threatened every skirting board and cornice in his historical structure.

It was an incredible experience. Walter’s foundations shook in awe of these giants. This was way beyond any tales Chester the Barn Shed had shared with him.

Walter finally felt that he had found his true place – a place where he fit in.

However, little did he know that property developers move swiftly. Our little hero’s days were numbered. A victim to ‘development.’ Destined to be demolished and divvied up into rock gardens, crazy paving and door stops.

But wait!

Fate smiled on Walter.

An unknown ally was building below his window ledges. In this harsh environment, the Historical Society emerged – coming to his rescue.

And so, Walter, in the depths of this huge city found himself content, nestled between skyscrapers.

He was now ‘culturally significant.’

Mark Brophy

#inkcloud #creativity #markbrophy

*image – NSW State Archives.

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