“I was married in 1963, when I was nineteen and a bit. That was the done thing back then. I moved to Windang until my husband passed away with bone cancer and I stayed there for nearly two years but I just couldn’t bear to be in the house any longer so I sold that and bought a lovely little place in Figtree. I had a lightbulb moment – literally – I opened my fridge up one day and the light bulb had blown and I thought, ‘oh bugger, I don’t really want to go to Kembla Radio Service’, because Ron and his brother were there. Don’t ask me why I didn’t want to go but I just didn’t feel like I wanted to face him because I knew he’d lost his wife and I’d lost my husband and you know, I thought, ‘it’s too emotional’. When we were young, our families were very close and we were good friends. But after we left school we went separate ways and so we never really had very much to do with each other after that.
“So, I went up to Salmon Brothers which was at Warrawong to get a new lightbulb and they didn’t have one and they said to me, ‘the only place you’ll get these is Kembla Radio Service’. So, I had to come down to Kembla Radio Service and they had the bulb. It was a pretty emotional reunion. Then I went home and my sister and brother-in-law asked me to go to Fiji on a holiday with them. I was really looking forward to that, just to get away. Then I was washing my beautiful little Pekingese dog in the laundry and the phone rang and it was Ron ringing to ask if I’d like to go for a drive. I said, ‘I’m going away, maybe when I come back?’ So that’s what happened. After I came back he rang me again and we went for a drive and the rest is history. It was an easy transition because we already knew each other and knew our past histories.”
– Robyn Stubbs (née Paull), 12 August 2016
Photo of Robyn Stubbs and Ron Southall on Wentworth Street by Nina Kourea