The Jillaroo

Host: Anna Plains Station

As a young girl I read Jillaroo by Rachel Treasure over 100 times. The thought of the bush and falling in love always appealed to me and I told my mother that one day, I would indeed live in the bush.

Ten years later I am in fact living in the outback. Although I have not fallen in love with a 6ft tall handsome man called Charlie, I have fallen in love with a million acre cattle station . . .

Anna Plains.


I came to Anna Plains Station in 2010 in search of a new beginning and a new life. In four years of living and working here I believe I have found so much more than that.





I started off in January 2010 as Governess for Timothy and Joanna. I had never been a governess before but things just seemed to work. Every day I would get up at 6.30AM and have breaky and then set off to the demountable we called the schoolroom. We would do English, Maths, Science, and the children would also do school with the teacher by the ‘air’ or the computer. Thanks to the Internet the kids could keep in contact with classmates and teachers as if they were only five minutes away not over 700km.


After my first year with Tim and Jo I decided that I really enjoyed teaching the children school. I watched these two amazing children grow every day, learn and expand their knowledge.


This was Timothy’s last year and I watched him graduate and leave the station and head off to boarding school. This was a very hard transition for not only Tim but for David, Helen, Joanna and myself.

I stayed on another year to see Joanna finish Year 7. In that last year Joanna and I grew very close. Not only is she like my sister now, she is also my best friend.

At the end of 2012 when Joanna graduated I was faced with the harsh reality that I would no longer be the governess at Anna Plains Station. I had a really hard think about my future and what I wanted to do. I decided that I was not ready to leave the love of my life just yet.

I sat down with David and Helen to discuss if there were any options of me staying on for another year. It was decided that I would be an all rounder. I would complete jobs around the homestead which include feeding calves, chooks, cleaning, and off to the yards on occasion if they were short staffed. This suited every one well and I was excited to stay the wet season and begin my new job.


After the very long wet season I was all prepared to begin my new homestead role. When, as happens quite often on stations, the cook decided to pull out just before muster. So it was decided that I would slip in to that role until another cook was found.

After around two weeks David and Helen came to me and asked if I would continue as the cook for the rest of the season. I didn’t see a problem with this so now I am the Anna Plains Cook – although I don’t truly like being called cookie! (as all the boys are now aware!)

My life has changed quite a bit since becoming the “cook”. No longer do I get my lovely sleep ins till 6.30AM, but am very much used to getting up at 4.30AM at muster time to prepare breakfast, lunch and smoko. Every day the boys get a hot breaky and two sandwiches along with cupcakes or quiche. I then go off to feed my babies (the calves) and come back and clean and prepare for dinner. Every night dinner varies, but mostly consists of meat and veg. – hard working men and women need a hardy meal!


So while my life moves at a fast past, I still get one on one time with my true love Anna Plains. I don’t quite know what draws me to this place . . . It could be the beach, the plains, the cattle or the people. But I know that it’s something strong that keeps me here and keeps me grounded year after year.


A big thank you to David, Helen, John, Tim, Jo, and the whole crew for making Anna what it is.