One of the highlights of my life… and then in 2015- 2016 Lynn and I traveled
the entire continent birding in a camper, not doing a big year, but we did
count birds we saw together as a couple (639). It was the journey of a
lifetime. We were fortunate enough to spend a few weeks with my Yabok again. I
will get back up there soonish I hope. Oh and I did write a book about it…
available online: http://au.blurb.com/b/8847459-the-year-with-photos
Thank you for that wonderful memory Yabok. It made my birthday all the more
R. Bruce Richardson
> On 31 Aug 2018, at 3:57 PM, Denise Goodfellow <>
> I’m sure many birding aussers know of Bruce Richardson, the American birder
> who has made Australia home.
> We met back in 2011, I think it was, when I guided Bruce and Lyn and another
> couple around the Top End. It was a momentous trip in more ways than one.
> We did see some good birds, if I remember correctly, but probably the
> highlight for Bruce was being adopted in Gunbalanya, western Arnhem Land.
> By chance we met up with Una, my daughter-in-law or Mamamh. There must have
> been something about Bruce that Una liked for she offered to go with us to
> see my older sister (Yabok) Esther, then in her mid-eighties. Again,
> usually, they don’t want strangers inside their homes. But to my
> surprise,Bruce and Lyn and their friends were invited to enter. Yabok then
> asked Bruce to sit down beside her, whereupon she began to show him some of
> the treasures in her handbag. I’ve got some wonderful photos of them
> Then, again to my surprise, Mamamh invited us back to her home to see her pet
> water buffalo. I’ll never forget Bruce’s face. He looked absolutely
> thrilled! But it was nothing to what came next.
> While we were standing around petting the buffalo Mamamh walked inside, and
> came back with her new baby grandson. Lyn had a cuddle as did their friends.
> I didn’t, because that little boy stands in the relationship of ‘poison
> cousin’ to me - it’s a forbidden relationship.
> Then Bruce reached out to take the baby, and Una said sharply, “No!”. Bruce
> looked at her in astonishment. I immediately twigged.
> In all my years of guiding not one client has ever been adopted by my
> relatives. But in an instant that baby boy became Bruce’s ‘poison cousin’ as
> well. It also meant that I was now Bruce’s big sister, his Yabok, and he my
> Dada, little brother. Bruce had suddenly acquired another family, one that
> included me.
> I just like to take this opportunity to wish my little brother Happy Birthday
> from his Yabok.
> Denise Lawungkurr Goodfellow Ph.D., B.A., Grad. Dip.
> PO Box 71
> Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841
> 043 8650 835
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