My Extraordinary Neighbour, Guy & His Wife, Molly
Updated: Jul 19, 2022
Let's face it. Most suburbs are bloomin' boring. But they do have their gems, such as this lovely man and his dog - Guy and Greyhound Charlie.
This is formidable Guy at age 94, his front door and table and his old Greyhound dog, Charlie.
I often find Guy working his garden over, which is quite large, given that it surrounds three sides of his home. He grows lots of vegetables and has some glorious orange trees. Guy built the wooden grass box there, so that the grass can be recycled after mowing, for using to help protect his plants. Check out those hot chillies!
So, who is Guy exactly? And what brings me to recognise this wonderful man's goodness and achievements? Well, as soon as I moved in opposite Guy a few years ago, I noticed his wife Mollys' beautiful paintings in her garden room. Molly often used to take their Whippet and Greyhound for a walk but did appear a little unsteady on her feet as time moved on and has since needed to move into a care home due to her ill health, unfortunately.
I ask Guy for a photo of Molly but not one was to be found as he said how she did not like to be photographed. His home is filled with many special family photos but Molly preferred to be kept out of them. Guy talks very fondly of Molly and how they met, which I will go into further along.
To be clear, let me point out that it is Molly that is the artist, which I have been talking about quite a bit in recent posts. Guy takes no credit although he said he did give his 'eye' for perspective, especially when she painted the eyes of the cats in her paintings that you will see. I believe that guy is a true artist of his garden though.
I loved these hand painted vegetables on their sliding glass door, so that you would know if it was closed. I think it benefitted the dogs too, ha. How vibrant they appear through the light.
Guy was born in Sydney, Australia and Molly was born in Holland, where she lived until around 5 or 6 years old, during the war. A bomb fell on the capital and her mum had to throw herself on top of Molly and dragged her away from the devastation. Unfortunately, Molly had suffered severe damage to her eardrum and was left deaf in one ear. Molly became a wonderful artist over the years and enjoyed painting in her native Dutch Hindeloopen style.
The following paintings are situated outside in their leafy garden room.
Molly moved to Beenleigh, Australia with her parents, where they had a dairy farm. Molly used to milk the cows. Guy first worked as a bus conductor and then became a driving instructor for many years. Guy moved to Brisbane around 1952 and lived on a farm from 1954-2000 but during that time he owned a Bedford truck and built a caravan on it and took off on a big road trip up to Cairns, aged around 25 years old.
Molly didn't just paint though, she sewed beautiful clothing for family and friends and also crocheted beautiful blankets and capes. Guy reflects on how her art room would look when in mid-painting or sewing flow. How much can we creatives relate to that? Poor Guy though. I do understand that it is not the easy life, living with an artist. But I did like to remind him how life is never boring with them, ha!
Molly painted large murals too and a little walk around their colourful home, is a wonder. An unassuming toilet is transformed into a little wisteria oasis.
The whole feel to their home is so beautiful, just like walking around an art gallery. Just wait until you see the view from the main bedroom!
Each door has it's own vase of flowers too. The detail in Mollys' paintings are just astounding.
Guy first met Molly on a dairy farm on the Sunshine Coast, where Molly was working. He would take her to the movies.
This wall mural is from Molly's old work room, as seen below.
This is the huge mural from the main bedroom. It gives such a lovely feel to this room and I can only imagine how blissful it would feel, waking up to this each morning.
Guy is here describing some of the features and how the cats came to be in the painting - one of their grandchildren suggested there be a cat or two!
With the previously purchased tiled kitchen splashback above, Molly liked the image so much that she made a painting of it too.
In the next photos, when Guy and Molly were holidaying in Venice, Molly asked the restaurant waiter if she could possibly have an old menu that she could take home, to paint the image of the restaurant that was on it. The waiter kindly obliged.
Isn't that just a lovely thing to define a sweet memory? So romantic. Little stories like this just warm my heart and make me want to spread this love about, so we can each take something good from it. Everything good lives on and so it should, when you have these amazing people in the world.
Guy takes his twice-daily walks around the creek and park and is always gardening - often gifting his delicious greens. He has a lovely family with a nearby daughter, so he is well looked after but he prefers to stay independent and keeps an eye on things locally. He has been so helpful with suggestions and letting me know little but important things, such as when one of my gates was swinging in the stormy winds, about to take off to Tasmania!
It's funny how related things happen because after my interview with Guy, I came across a handpainted clothes hanger in the Hindeloopen paint style, which his wife Molly was heavily influenced by. I didn't love the drab colours though, so I did paint over a few bits here and there, to brighten it up.
When Guy popped over the other day, I showed him it and we marvelled at my mad studio - organised chaos, we called it! I think Guy has a good idea how this can happen.
I am so blessed to know such a lovely family and to engage in their extraordinary home in our little community.
My next interview will be with a beautiful South African lady that has recently moved nearer to the seaside, not too far from me. You will love her collections, I am sure.
Bless you all for joining me on this little hidden discovery. I love you all. Debra x