Have you ever thought about what it would be like to move and to live in a new city or town?

My name is Ernie. I now call the Story Box Library headquarters ‘home’, but I’ve lived in lots of homes before, which haven’t always been in Australia. When I first migrated here with my family, I found a lot of unfamiliar sights, sounds and smells. I found that reading books about characters in similar situations, like My Two Blankets, helped me to understand how I could find a new community, while remembering and celebrating where I came from. 

I’ve been settled at SBL HQ for a while now, and am very lucky to have three best friends, Edna, Madge and Boris, who have always made me feel welcome. I often invite them to my house for cups of warm, sweet, fresh mint tea. I give them all a big, squeezy hug when they arrive. This can be tricky, because I wear a lot of big hats that can get in the way. Sometimes, I’ll wear a hat that resembles a loaf of bread, which can be confusing for my guests. Sometimes it will be a hat so long my friends almost trip over it! But most of the time, I’ll wear my bowler hat that I like a lot

When everyone has arrived, we sit in my comfortable living room to discuss our plans for the future, the books we’re currently reading or the adventures we want to go on next.

I’m a bit of a ‘travel bug’, always curious about new cities, so I’ll often suggest we plan a trip to somewhere new. I have a love for languages and have learnt many throughout my life. One of my favourite things to do is revisit words and phrases, which are a little bit different in each language, on our adventures. I’ve previously suggested we go to a city with subway smells and the sound of late night jazz club, and places full of art, scooters and croissants. I’ve also suggested that we stay a bit closer to home to discover kookaburras who love to laugh or koalas who eat gum leaves.

If we can’t take a trip anywhere, we make plans to read books about adventurous characters together – another way to discover our wide big world!