I was 21. An adult, eligible to vote, and to get a driving licence. And I was trusted to, and required to give considerable domestic help. My elder sister had escaped some of the domestic load, as she was a nurse, and in those days, trainee nurses lived in, at the nurses' home.
I had learned to drive and had just recently passed the driving test and obtained my licence. It took some time for the licence to arrive, and in this period my parents went to Tasmania, for a legal conference of some kind. They took some of the children, leaving me to care for the others, and to keep house. Which I did.
My licence arrived, and so I used the family car. After my parents and the other children arrived home, I had casually mentioned something about having used the car. My father looked thunderous. He said I had not been permitted to use the car in his absence - although the issue had never been raised. And as a punishment for what he saw as disobedience, in his view deliberate, he gave me a belting, and naturally I was prohibited from driving the family car. My protestations of innocence of intention were to no avail. I was enraged. I did not act with bad intent, and had, after all, been acting as an adult and was, I suppose, in loco parentis, and I cannot abide injustice.
After some weeks my father made me drive with him, so he could be satisfied of my capability. He then permitted me to use the car, from time to time.
Well, of course, this all happened many many years ago, and, as they say, worse things happen at sea. But with the memory, albeit somewhat imperfect, having been triggered, the same feelings of having been treated unjustly, and being subjected, as an adult, to corporal punishment, have surged up, and I wonder just why my father had treated me thus, with no presumption of innocence of intent or consideration of extenuating circumstances.