Romany Michele Lamond
Director Of Nursing, Cow Bay Primary Health Clinic. Co-Owner of the Jungle Bugs and Butterflies Museum
What attracted you to the Daintree Coast?
At the time was forced here by my then husband Stephen Lamond as he is an Entomologist.
I then spent 6 months here getting bored and 6 months in Sydney until 1990 when we moved here full time & started a native plants Nursery on our property but got bored again up here!
Started a job in Cairns Base Hospital in Emergency Department (ED) 4 days a week, which included shift rotation to be RN in ED and on-board Rescue Helicopter, until I fell pregnant.
Went on maternity leave in August 1993 and didn’t go back.
Started the WWOOFs program in 1994 at the farm and had 2-17 WWOOFs at a time working on the Turpentine Road property, building stone walls, stone gates and supplying seeds for my native tree and fruit tree nursery.
We planted out over 10,000 trees on the 20 acres cleared block- formally a cattle farm.
In 1993-1994 had the Quarry running to supply gravel to seal the Cape Tribulation Road. Then in 1994-95 the Pioneer company had a bitumen plant in the quarry.
In February 1998 Went back to work part time as the Director of Nursing at the Diwan Health clinic when Dan was 4 years old.
First had to work out of the Clinic car, until Douglas Shire council built the 4m x4m clinic room, then the keys for the CILC (community information liaison committee) building was handed over.
Part-time became full time in 2000.
As this area developed young families started businesses but found they needed a Day care to support their children. An enterprising business owner of the Heritage lodge in 1998 thought of the idea to encourage their nanny to open a small day care centre. Lesley was successful as all the businesses were owned by young families needing childcare facilities.
I was able to drop Dan off at school at 08:00 and pick him up at 3:30 from Day care as prep school was only 4 hours a day. Life then was manageable.
Life settled into a pattern of work and family for 2 years then I became a fulltime Nurse in 2000 for the Daintree Coast.
Dan was then at school and caught the bus to and from school.
I was very busy at the clinic and travelling to Mossman Hospital for weekly meetings.
The Bug museum – Daintree Entomological Museum was about to open in 2002 and tour buses commenced in 2005. Running a business and the Cow Bay Primary health clinic didn’t leave me much spare time.
To this day work both businesses remain busy hot spots for everyone in the Daintree coast.
Where did you previously live?
What made you/your family move here?
Bugs and Butterflies. Then had a baby and got a job as DON Cow Bay Primary Health clinic and stated I would set up the Clinic then leave after 2 years….. 24 years later still here and loving the job, the community, the friends and lifestyle.
What do you like to do with your time here?
Would love to start up an exercise group/ walking group with goals and objective outcomes.
Trying to handover the running of the Daintree Museum to someone else in my family as we speak!!!
Charity work has always been a favourite pastime and I hope that continues.
What changes have you seen whilst living here?
In 1990’s it was very hippy – but as the landowners grew up, they changed to business owners with lots of school aged children.
Now average age of a local is 50years +, children are scarce and older/mature people are arriving here.
Limited health access and aged care in a remote area, is my big problem for the future.
What is something you wish you knew about before moving here?
The lack of potential activities for teens and young people living here. No sports or recreational activities in this area. Young must leave here to achieve their potential.