One box’s mystery journey

May 10, 2017

Robin Harwood inspects the address and date on the box which was brought into the Yarrawonga Community Opportunity Shop.

It really is the stuff of science fiction mystery or a good detective novel.

Robin Harwood, Manager of the Yarrawonga Community Opportunity Shop, was walking past the sorting desk, where volunteers sort the vast amount of items that are donated to the store every day, recently when a beautifully designed box caught his eye.

“It was uncanny really, I just happened to be walking past desk and saw the box,” Robin said.

“I love collecting old items and I thought this looked quite old so I picked it up and looked at it a bit closer.

“Well, I couldn’t believe it when I read the label on the box.

“I thought, ‘that’s incredible, that is my old address when I was a child living in Melbourne’.”

It turns out not only was it his old address, the name on the box was his mother’s.

“My mother must have purchased by catalogue some lingerie from Buckleys which was a very posh department store and they mailed it out to her,” he said.

“She had bought three Opera Top Vests in Ivory.

“The date on the address sticker said April 21, 1955; these definitely would have been a luxury for mum as it was only ten years after the Second World War had ended and people were still on rations and doing it a bit tough.

“And now, almost 62 years later to the day, the box has turned up on my desk.”

Robin said nothing was in the box when he picked it up and no one at the store knows who dropped it off.

“It is such a mystery, I would love to know what has happened to the box in those intervening years,” he said.

“Who brought the box in and where did they get it?

“There are so many questions.

“I was only 13 months old when mum took receipt of her three vests.

“She passed away six years ago but would have celebrated her 100th birthday this year.

“This is just a wonderful reminder of her.”

The Yarrawonga Community Opportunity Shop donates back to local groups including Foodshare, Meals on Wheels, Community Car, Respite Car and Home Care Support, approximately $200,000 each year.

“We are trying to contribute to organisations that make the lives of vulnerable people in the community better,” Robin said.

“We have such strong local support here in Yarrawonga and when little gems like this box arrive it just puts the icing on the cake.”

If anyone has information on who donated the box to the Yarrawonga Community Opportunity Shop please contact the Yarrawonga Chronicle on 0357 443731 or email [email protected]

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