Geri finally ready to be an Aussie

CELEBRATION: Geraldine Watson has been waving the Aussie flag for 45 years and will finally receive her Australian citizenship in Stanthorpe this year. Photo Shannon Newley / Stanthorpe Border Post
CELEBRATION: Geraldine Watson has been waving the Aussie flag for 45 years and will finally receive her Australian citizenship in Stanthorpe this year. Photo Shannon Newley / Stanthorpe Border Post Shannon Newley

GERI Watson has lived in the land down under for longer than she resided in her home country of Ireland and, finally, on January 26 she will truly be able to call Australia home.

"I think it's about time," Mrs Watson said of her impending naturalisation. "I had the papers (to seek citizenship) about 30 years ago."

The 73-year-old, who came to the country in 1968 after meeting her Australian husband Bob in London, will receive her citizenship during Stanthorpe Australia Day celebrations in Weeroona Park.

The event will include a pie-eating contest, billy-boiling championship, wood chopping and chainsaw ripping.

Stanthorpe's favourite band Loaded Dice 2 will kick off the entertainment at 2pm. Food stalls will operate on the day.

The official ceremony mid-afternoon will include the swearing in of new citizens and presentation of Australia Day Awards. The pool is open free to the public from 2pm.

As for Geri, who said she would always hold a little piece of Ireland in heart, it's all about the Aussie way of life.

"We enjoy a good life here," she said. "It's a free way of life with great people."

More on Stanthorpe Australia Day activities on pages 23 and 24.

Topics:  australia day, citizenship ceremony, stanthorpe

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