This book is a human and Australian story written in four distinct parts and tied together with the thread of the author’s life. It speaks for migrants who are driven by upheavals and rapid change, youth, adventure, and a desire to succeed; it is for those who arrive with hope and the countries that give them the chance of a better life. The essence is in the characters and the places, and the power is in the interaction of multiple disciplines. It tells of invention, of research and development, and of a device that saved lives, spared thousands the pain and suffering of major operations, and funded facilities and teaching. The feelings of the author are expressed in anecdotes with emotion, stark reality, tragedies, humor, failures, and achievement.
Starting with Kenya and safaris in East Africa, the story moves on to migration, Australian culture in the sixties and then medicine and invention in surgery. It involves peoples with multiple skills in different settings. Perceptions of training of surgeons have fired public curiosity, and this story is from the inside of medical school and, ultimately, about what makes a surgeon.
The twentieth century saw unrivaled changes in technology, politics, and human relations; the collapse of the British Empire; and the dispersal of its colonials. This is the story of a colonial boy, who was one of many that traveled like feathers on the wind of change that blew across Africa.
The author was honored with the Award Officer of Australia (AO) for leading a team in research and development in vascular and endovascular surgery. The story is for the unsung diverse group of special individuals who made it possible. They convinced establishments, hurdled passionate special interest groups, negotiated institutional politics, and precipitated government actions to address new concepts.