I was reading an Obituary in the Courier Mail (from Saturday February 15th) and realised that I had a connection with one of the subjects.  I wrote about the Obits in another blog.

It was mentioned in the obit that the lady was a stomaltherapist and had attended the World Stomaltherapy Conference in Perth in 1986.  I was not a stomaltherapist - but was employed by a company that sold stomaltherapy products.  What is stomal therapy?  Read here.  I did meet her and had contact with her later on.

I had recently been employed by a company selling stoma products, and within a couple of weeks of starting with them I was sent to Perth for (a) the World Stomaltherapy Conference and (b) a company conference at York.

There's a funny story with this - another lady was booked to go to the conference and the air ticket was not transferable, so I flew in her name.  In those days we did not have to provide evidence (ID), so it worked, although there was some drama around the return trip from Perth to Brisbane.  I had stayed at the Sheraton, and apparently when Qantas phoned the Sheraton to advice that the flight was delayed, the Sheraton said that the woman named had not stayed there!  True, but it was me that was expecting to fly!  It wasn't until I got to the airport - and it was the Red Eye Flight due to leave around midnight, that I learned the story and quick talking enabled me to get on the flight rather than be left at the Perth Airport.

All the other company members had flown out - I would have been stranded.  I had rented a car and driven with another person from the conference driven to Freemantle and then back via the Perth Casino.  It was before mobile phones too!!!

The company that manufactured the stoma products was from Denmark, and I can recall going in the minibus to York with a couple of the Danes when we passed a road kill - a dead kangaroo, and they insisted that the vehicle stop.  It was their first sighting of a kangaroo.  We all climbed out of the minibus and approached the stinking corpse.  We Aussies were aghast!!!  (We do hope that later they would have seen a real life non stinking one!)

We stayed in a lovely old motel in York - the whole town is fascinating.  It is the oldest inland town in Western Australia and is very interesting.  I remember going on early morning walks, including having to climb over a fence via a stile to see an old church, and one morning further out of town I was taking photos of a goats in a fenced yard, when one of the big goats (a billy by the size of his horns) leapt over the fence and chased me down the road.  It did curb my early morning walks!!!

As well as products for stomas (colostomy, ileostomy bags etc) the company sold a range of products for men with incontinence.  Now that is another story....................


peter petterson said…
Interesting products Di. Interesting story. Danes and kangaroo roadkill!
Di Hill said…
Yes, it was very funny!

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