Retail Therapy

Nostalgia is a wonderful thing and what is someone else’s trash is another person’s treasure…

Reclaiming, reusing and recycling furniture, second-hand decorative items, chinaware and vintage haberdashery is a treasure hunters idea of heaven on earth.

It can be exciting to spend hours sifting through markets and market-style retail spaces looking for bizarre bits and bobs from years past to decorate your home. Imagine the bliss upon finding a prized novel or picking up an antique painting for $10 that turns out to be worth a small fortune…

Steeped in history, Flinders Island has it’s own lost treasures just waiting to be found. Apart from visiting the museum where you can admire old-wares, you can find a cross-section of articles for sale from at least the past 80 years at Jon’s Bizarre Bazaar, located across from the Post Office close to the corner of the Esplanade and Barr Street.

Before this was a shop of opportunity it was a house of healing. The resident healer, Agatha Bainbridge came to Flinders Island to bring about The Baha’i Faith – an independent religion with a central theme that humanity is one family. By all accounts Agatha practiced quite a nice religion and she also had healing hands!

Jon Hizzard had fallen from his bike and paid a visit to the house for healing purposes and as nature would have it, the pair wound up healing each other. Filling in minutes and then hours with stories of inspiration and ideas for the future Agatha Bainbridge, 95 and Jon Hizzard became best of mates.

Consequent of the friendship Jon up kept the building for Agatha until she no longer dwelled in the space. When this very beautiful lady left this world Jon found homage style photographic slides that Agatha Bainbridge had put together for her beloved Baha’i temple and other curiosities …Serendipity came into play.

During the last four years Jon has collected and traded countless unwanted items donated by Flinders Islanders that are otherwise destined for burial i.e. at the tip and displayed them in his shop. You can also invest in local artwork or buy bottles of ‘Jon the Jugglers’ addictive hot sauce.

This shop is part of a bigger dream for the community; this positive space encourages the spirit of giving. It isn’t actually about money and making a huge profit although Jon does envisage a microbrewery and coffee shop for the future – Jon could use the third tap over the kitchen sink for the beer… perfect!

Island life often requires a third tap. It is for pure drinking water, fresh from the rainwater tank. The three taps in the shops kitchen once prompted a story from Agatha who over a pot of tea explained to Jon about a residence in England called Halsey House “We would always have three taps. One for hot water, one for cold water and one for beer straight from the brewery!”

If you are lucky you can get a hot drink at Jon’s Bazaar. He loves to offer a beverage made from a roasted and ground bean specifically a blend of Furneaux Coffee and this will help too because there are many items to be unsure of the origin. Jon loves to ponder them with you…

And you don’t want to miss the experience of becoming hypnotized into a sale by Jon playing a giant recorder – similar to how the musical ‘Pungi’ instrument charms a snake or witnessing an impromptu fashion show to the beat of Gorillaz.

Please do keep your eyes peeled for the large open sign indicating it’s time to explore Jon’s Bizarre Bazaar store…you’ll get more than you bargained for.

X Sammi & Megan


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  • Reply Andrew July 1, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Might have to install a third tap…

    • Reply Gayle July 1, 2013 at 10:13 pm

      I love the local stories… I love Jons Bizarre Bizarre. I have spent a lot of time browsing, checking out the books (I am a bookaholic) Looking at the bric a brac, Listening to fantastically good music from the collection of old LPs (sometimes bloody awful too). The coffee is wonderful on a winters day and the bargains are unbelieveable…. My only complaint is that The Bizarre, Bizarre is not open enough… But then, I am being selfish as Jon has other work as well.. Maybe, come the summer, we could have extended hours…….

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