For Sally Fowler, an English-born teacher at One Arm Point, taking Australian citizenship was a way of affirming a big personal commitment.
“This is my new home now,” she said.
Just off the plane from a family Christmas at home in the Lancashire village of Withnell and undeterred by the vagaries of the season’s weather, she is eager to head north for a new term at the One Arm Point School.
She teaches Years 5, 6 and 7.
She’s been in Australia for seven years in total, arriving first after completing her degree and spending a year working in her father’s small business. Her first job was as a nanny on a farm in South Australia, becoming such close friends with her employers that she regards them as her Australian family.
She completed her teaching qualifications through Murdoch University while living and working at Fitzroy Crossing before moving to One Arm Point a year ago. That will be home for at least this year and, she suspects, for some time to come.
One of a family of four, she’s been back to the UK several times and her parents and one of her sisters have been to visit.
“They’re amazed. They’re happy that I’m happy here, but they don’t quite understand it,” she said with a laugh.
For her, the natural beauty of the Kimberley is a constant source of wonder and the source of her pleasure in the living here.
On days off she walks the beach with her beloved dog, camps, goes fishing and socialises with colleagues.
She’s delighted at becoming a citizen on Australia Day.