Puppet in Residence

Mr Punch is definitely enjoying the residency at Bundanon. This afternoon we took him out for his first jaunt in the countryside. Puppets don’t get much of a break from their life inside the roadcase or the booth so this afternoon The Professor and I walked Mr Punch up to a tiny little cottage – the Single Man’s Hut – that’s set on a hill behind the main homestead.

You can just make out the Single Man’s Hut in the distance in the photo below.

We made our way along the beautiful track, passing mobs of kangaroos grazing in the late afternoon sunlight.

No one stays in the single man’s hut. There’s no running water up there, no kitchen or bathroom, but that’s not really a problem for a puppet. The hut would make a great puppet house. It’s a bit like a glorified cubby house from a contemporary perspective though once upon a time working men lived there while they worked on the property. There’s a great view from the hut, right across the grounds of the homestead, taking in the ornamental lake and the fields beyond that stretch down to the Shoalhaven River.

The Professor tried to get Mr Punch to take an interest but puppets often have their own agenda.

Mr Punch just wanted to check out the hut. The Professor didn’t particularly approve of the Peeping Punch routine and hence a battle ensued. Mr Punch, wasn’t interested in being stuffed back in his bag and made a run for it. But he didn’t have a chance. He’s only a 30 cm puppet and The Professor always has the upper hand. It was back in the bag for poor old Punchey. All he wanted was to have a bit of time out. But we dragged him back to the Writer’s Cottage, even though the Single Man’s Hut would have been a perfect retreat for a puppet like Punch. Then again, he’s not actually single. Judy would have been a little annoyed to find him missing from the big red roadcase.

Kirsty is an Australian author of books for children and young adults.

“Books are windows into other ways of being.”

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