Exploroz Member awarded OAM

Submitted: Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 19:19
ThreadID: 137715 Views:1435 Replies:13 FollowUps:15
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Please join us in congratulating Phil Blanchi for the great honour of receiving an OAM in today's honour roll for service to community history. What a wonderful recognition for his commitment and work. Well done!

See news article 2019 Australia Day Full Honours List
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Reply By: Baz - The Landy - Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 19:33

Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 19:33
Wonderful and well deserved Phil...!

Cheers Baz
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:16

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:16
Many thanks Baz, I like your signature.
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Reply By: Member - Stephen L (Clare SA) - Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 19:39

Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 19:39
Well done Phil and it could not have been awarded to a better person

All the Best


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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:17

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:17
Many thanks Stephen, we must get a trip together one day.
atb

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Reply By: Life Member - Duncan W (WA) - Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 20:31

Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 20:31
Congrats Phil.

cheers

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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:22

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:22
Thanks Dunc.

Hey if you're wanting to go to another book launch I've got one on the 24 Feb, you seemed to enjoy the last one.

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Follow Up By: Life Member - Duncan W (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 12:43

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 12:43
Morning Phil - the day after.
Thanks Phil and yes I had contemplated that when I received your email the other day. And, I suppose I'll put my hand in my pocket again. Guess the price of a signed copy will go up now that you can put those little letters after your name.

cheers

Dunc
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:39

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:39
A price increase, very funny Dunc.

Nah, same price. The sale price is still to be determined; the publisher is waiting to ensure he has all costs before making the determination.

Hope to see you there - maybe we'll get a couple of mug shots and scare people here about.

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Reply By: Ron N - Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 20:36

Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 20:36
Wow, does this mean we now have to genuflect in Phil's presence, due to his exalted position?? [;-)

I can't imagine what it must be like, to be awarded an honour like that. I guess all those long hours of research and writing paid off, eh, Phil? Congratulations!

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:40

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:40
Genuflect haha, very funny Ron. No, I've still got two feet on the ground - 1.5 actually, I had a double arthroscopy on right knee Tues last.

For me it’s been a privilege to document our history and heritage so it doesn’t disappear before it’s recorded and so that it provides another dimension to us as 4wdrivers in our travels out bush.

Its a journey I've thoroughly enjoyed.


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Reply By: Mick O - Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 21:44

Saturday, Jan 26, 2019 at 21:44
Strewth, almost broke my knee rocketting to attention ??Congratulations Phil on your award.
Richly deserved for your years of dedicated research and work. Enjoy the presentation ceremony with your family, it's a lot of fun cheers, Mick and Vik
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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:53

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:53
Mick and Vik, thanks or your good wishes.

Broke your knee (almost), what's happening with the knees; Ron genuflecting, you breaking and me an arthroscopy -lol.

Yes the award is nice surprise, but never been a consideration. Who thinks of that?
The advice of the award appeared in an email out of the blue; what such a shock?? A million thoughts went through the grey cells, most of which were scam, trick, joke…
Who did this? My immediate thoughts were: Stephen, Michelle, Baz, Ron, Dunc, Graham or Mick O, nah too honest!

I replied 'Who are you really?'
Then came the citation with lots about me, even stuff I had forgotten; you wouldn’t believe what people find out about you.

An OAM, what an honour indeed.


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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 15:47

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 15:47
.
Add me to the hobblers...... I'm sitting here with two broken bones in my left foot.

But to the point Phil.... Congratulations mate. Very well deserved indeed.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Mick O - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 00:30

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 00:30
Mate it is an honour and one you need to accept as deserving. Nothing to do with us East coast outsiders. It will be sons and daughters of the West who wish all Australians to recognise the work you have done in recording the history of WA.
Long may that work continue!
''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:17

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:17
Thanks Mick, thanks very much.

Although you guys over the desert eastward may think you're outsiders and we sandgropers keep telling you that (lol) we're all Aussies and dont we love our country.
I couldn't live anywhere else.

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Reply By: gke - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 07:50

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 07:50
Congratulations Phil on your well deserved award.

All the best, Graham.
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:13

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:13
Many thanks Graham.
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Reply By: Phil B (WA) - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:12

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 11:12
Thank you all for your good wishes.

What a surprise it was when I found out about being granted an OAM.
For me it’s been a privilege to document our history and heritage so it doesn’t disappear before it’s recorded and so that it provides another dimension to our travels out bush.

I’ve met so many wonderful people along the way, who share my passion and many of whom are good mates; almost like an extended family.

Wishing you all a belated Happy Australia Day.
And as one wag said to me yesterday - is this 'Work Completed Bianchi?' - Not yet.
See you in the bush.

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Reply By: Member - Racey - Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 17:36

Sunday, Jan 27, 2019 at 17:36
Phil, I join with the others in congratulating you on your award.

Kind regards
Jon
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:51

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:51
Thanks very much Jon

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Reply By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:28

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:28
.
Phil, can you copy the Citation up here on the EO forum? I believe we would all like to read it.

What do you reckon fellas?
Cheers
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Follow Up By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:07

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:07
Hey Allan, you've joined the casualty team I see. I reckon this getting old business is an ongoing war. We're under constant attack, with rust being the enemy.

I'm hardly out of the panel beaters having one lot fixed only to find another outbreak. Hopefully most will be sorted soonish and we might get a 12-18 month break before the next skirmish.

Have a speedy recovery.


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Follow Up By: Allan B (Sunshine Coast) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:15

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:15
.
Thanks Phil.
It will be at least 6 weeks in a Moon Boot.
The inactivity is driving me mad.

By the way, if you see 'Lennie B' down at the OAM club, give him my regards. lol
Cheers
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Reply By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:58

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 08:58
Ok, this is it.
When your life is layed out like this its somewhat embarrasing.
P Bianchi OAM




Thanks folks or celebrating this with me.


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Reply By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:23

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 09:23
Now I'm on my soap box.

The historian in me has to say this.
Every single one of us has a story to tell, every single one of us has contributed to making Australia Great.

Please record your personal history for our descendants. And none of this: 'I haven't done anything important.' Bull. Everyone is important.

In my research over 20 plus years there have been so many dead ends, so many migrants’ stories of making good in Aust lost, of descendants saying 'I don't really know what grandpa/ma did.'

Just do it, please?

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Follow Up By: Ron N - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 14:10

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 14:10
You're not wrong there, Phil. I deeply regret not getting the old man's full life story.
Orphaned at age 17, he came to Australia alone, in 1925, at age 19, (as a "Ten-Pound Pom") and endured some torrid times. There was no-one in Australia that he knew, or was related to.

Mistreated by rotten employers in Victoria who even kept his personal possessions when he left their employ - meaning he had to go to the Police to retrieve them.
Given accommodation by these mean rotters, that was a garden shed in a market garden, with black snakes for company on his bed - which bed had hessian bags for bedding!

Left Victoria for W.A. with little money and arrived at the end of Oct 1929 - right as the Great Depression hit, with little chance of any meaningful employment.
He ended up sleeping in the sand dunes of Cottesloe Beach to try and save a quid.

Then he set off North in the hope of finding work. I still have no idea how he made it up there, probably a lot of walking involved.
He then managed to find a job running the water pumping station engine in Carnarvon, a big old horizontal, slow-speed, single-cylinder Blackstone.

He was only there for 6 weeks when a bloke with 7 kids rolled up. Married blokes got priority for jobs during the Depression - so the old man was on the road again.
He ended up in Wiluna, then at Doolgunna Station - where the station owner, Jimmy Howard, offered him a station hand job - but without any immediate pay.

Jimmy promised he would pay him up in full - and he was a man of integrity.
After 4 yrs at Doolgunna, wool prices boomed, and Jimmy paid the old man up in full. Jimmy became a lifelong friend of Dad's.

Whilst on Doolgunna, he worked for independent fencing crews on all the other stations in the Murchison. These crews were some of the hardest-bitten rogues, alcoholics, and ne'er-do-wells you could ever encounter.

The old mans stories of these blokes were endless. So drunk, they often had the DT's - they even drank a whole case of lemonade in the dark, before they realised it, next morning! - and then abused the old man for giving them lemonade! LOL

The old man got lost on Doolgunna when fencing one time, and was only saved by the leader of the fencing crew - an old bushman who was 70 - who climbed a big tree, and lit a fire in a fork of the tree, for a homing beacon for the old man!

He left Jimmys employ and took on a percussion drilling rig on contract for the W.A. Boring company - and taught himself to handle camels.
He bought several camels (including a killer black camel who had killed his vicious Afghan owner in Meekatharra) - and bought a dray from Jimmy Howard, in 1934 - that was one of Charles Cannings original drays from his 1906 expedition!

The old man loved his camels, and reckoned the black "killer" camel was his best, hardest-working camel!

He went water boring, often by himself, for 3 years, enduring loneliness, heat, and hard work, like I couldn't imagine.
The jumper bar on the drilling rig was a massive steel bar, 4" in diameter (100mm) and 12 feet long (3.65M).
He gave himself a bad hernia lugging this jumper bar around by himself - it weighed over 220kgs!

He left the Murchison in 1937 and came to Perth, where he got married - and a whole new set of adventures awaited him!

Cheers, Ron.

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Reply By: Member - McLaren3030 - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 11:09

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 11:09
Congratulations Phil, a great honour.

Macca.
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Reply By: Phil B (WA) - Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 22:12

Monday, Jan 28, 2019 at 22:12
Hi Ron,
Wow what an adventurous life was lead by your Dad?

Mistreated, water pumper, no pay for 4 years, worked with rogues and alcoholics, water borer, a cameleer owing a killer camel then comes to town and gets married, and as you day an adventure.

At that time your Dad took it in his stride, it’s what he and others had to do to get by. Today we look at his story with amazement and appreciation. This is what I was getting at when I said in another post above, ‘write down your story; it will be appreciated at a later date.’

Although you say you don’t have detail about your Dad, I reckon you have captured the essence of a real bushie and a hard worker and have me wanting to know more.

ATB to you and Dad.
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