We take our holidays during the Tropical Wet Season when the garden turns into a jungle and before you know it, the weeds are monsters, the menacing cyclones linger off the coast, and the thunderhead clouds are the first sign of trouble. It is comforting to know that you have someone who can batten down the hatches against the strong winds and rain and look after your home and possessions.

Over the years we have been fortunate to have some amazing friends and family who have travelled from far and wide – Copenhagen, Melbourne, Perth as well as locals from Broome who have taken on the mission to look after our home and our two dogs, Banu and Coco. Our house sitters have worked far beyond our expectations, and we really cherish them. Coming home to a house that is cleaner than when you left it, to a garden that’s been loved and dogs that look fit and trim is such a pleasure.

If you think it is an easy job to just move into someone’s house and enjoy the luxury without the responsibility, think again. They must get used to the idiosyncrasies of the television, understand the pool pump, work out why the reticulation is not working, how to use the washing machine and why the dishwasher makes that funny noise. They have duties to perform ‐ picking up our mail (easier now the digital world is upon us) but there is still mail, mowing the lawn, walking the dogs, cleaning the pool and controlling the garden that grows at a rapid pace. Then there’s the occasional cyclone that comes too close and causes all sorts of damage. Yes, the house sitter must do the clean up!

In early 2019 we went on holiday and needed someone special who could commit four months of their time. Our friend Liz Cochrane said yes when we asked her. She travelled from Melbourne to Broome in her Toyota Coaster motorhome by herself, taking ten days and 5,000 kms and she was about to celebrate her 70th birthday. Amazing woman. She was hoping for a lovely ‘wet’ season, but sadly, it wasn’t. The pool filter and electrical circuit went caput in the pool, the lawn grew an inch a day, I left her the wrong keys and it was hot, very hot and no tropical storms to enjoy. She did have a Broome‐Style house to stay in, with the coldest pool in Broome and her family from the east came for a visit – so there were a few benefits.

We pay tribute to the house‐sitters of Broome and a special thank you to our lovely Lizzie who enabled us a trouble‐free four‐month holiday – it was wonderful.

Uniquely Broome 2020