The Narrabundah Boy and his Italian friend, 65 years on


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Within the assured younger larrikin and Aussie Ray Hawke, Dimiano Costa noticed a possible buddy for his five-year-old brother Angelo.

A young Ray Hawke on a horse at Narrabundah circa 1956.

A younger Ray Hawke on a horse at Narrabundah circa 1956.

“Angelo was simply this shy little boy with a lot of darkish hair,” Ray recollects.

“I mentioned ‘come and pat my horse’ and I let him sit on Bambi and, actually, that was it. I took him underneath my wing.”

Angelo laughs: “I keep in mind getting off Bambi and considering I might have bandy legs for the remainder of my life.”

Regardless of the language barrier and the age distinction, the boys turned inseparable. Their friendship was constructed with hand gestures – “loads of pointing” – laughter and a shared and deep love of horses.

Ray taught Angelo English and in return Angelo would assist Ray groom the Hawke household horses in agistment in a paddock simply out of Narrabundah.

Angelo Costa rides along Warramoo Crescent, Narrabundah, in the early 1960s.

Angelo Costa rides alongside Warramoo Crescent, Narrabundah, within the early 1960s.

However the little Italian boy longed for a horse of his personal.

“I got here up with a plan to earn a living – I began catching homing pigeons,” Angelo recollects.

Angelo and Ray at Ray's property in Hall.

Angelo and Ray at Ray’s property in Corridor.Credit score:Jamila Toderas

“You used to get two shillings for a pair of pigeons and I used to be promoting them to different Italians for meals, however then I realised that the meat-eating ones would not come again dwelling.

“However I had one [pigeon] particularly who at all times escaped and managed to fly dwelling. So I simply stored promoting him time and again.”

It labored. Angelo purchased his personal horse and because the boys grew into males, they remained finest mates. Each began careers working with horses; Angelo breaking-in horses and ultimately beginning his personal driving faculty on Mugga Lane, whereas Ray most well-liked to work in camp drafting.

After falling in love and marrying, the lads’s wives naturally fashioned a detailed bond and the Costa and Hawke households shared particular events collectively too.

Through the years, they’ve stayed in contact; a weekly telephone name the place Ray updates Angelo on work and household information and the Italian – a serial entrepreneur – asks for Ray’s recommendation on his newest invention.

Ray relies at a property at Corridor whereas Angelo has just a few hectares at Royalla. In fact, the mild beasts that introduced them collectively are the main focus of each properties.

It may be their quiet natures or a generational factor however each males are nervous whereas being interviewed and discover it laborious to place into phrases what makes a profitable friendship.

“I might say honesty and belief,” Ray says.

Angelo: “We did not got down to change into finest mates, it simply occurred.

Angelo in the 1970s.

Angelo within the 1970s.

“We have by no means needed to power it. It simply is. It is who we’re and it is real.

“It is a gorgeous relationship, we do not tread on every others’ toes, there is a deep respect there.”

At ages 77 and 73, the story of the mens’ 65-year friendship has been made into a brief movie referred to as The Narrabundah Boy. The seven-minute movie is the creation of Angelo’s daughter Grace, knowledgeable photographer, educator and artist.

“I needed to make the movie as a result of their story is so distinctive and attention-grabbing on two ranges – as a result of it celebrates a life-long friendship and it celebrates a life-long dedication to their craft,” Grace says.

“Each of these issues are extremely uncommon.”

The premiere screening of the movie takes place at Palace Electrical on Saturday night time.

For Ray and Angelo, the filming of The Narrabundah Boy included assembly a lot youthful variations of themselves: actors Rory Carroll (as a younger Ray) and Eamon Carroll (as little Angelo).

“That was particular,” Ray says.

Angelo: “It was a reminder that two little boys from Canberra do have an exquisite story.”

Bree Component is the life and leisure editor at The Canberra Instances

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