Humans of Canungra -Jodie Devlin

Jodie Devlin
Jodie Devlin at home in Daisy Cottage. Photo: Katherine O'Brien

You never have to wonder what Jodie Devlin is thinking, because she will tell you immediately – she’s known for her honesty.  

I’ve known her since I was seven years old.  She’s lived in Canungra for over 20 years and in that time she has helped a lot of people and become a mainstay of the community.

You’re one of those people in Canungra everyone knows, is that from working at the newsagent?  How long were you there?

Canungra Law

I started off working with Jo and Norm in 1999.  Beth (Jodie’s daughter) was three.

Were you the only staff member?

No, Carol Fitton and Di Hannel trained me in the job.  It changed dramatically from the old tac-tac till to a computerised till and Lotto changed to all this computerisation.

Jo and Norm really gave me my start there and when they sold they said I came with the newsagency.

Paul and Shona (Kraayvanger) bought it and we had a lot of changes but it was the best working atmosphere, we had so much fun.

Because of the type of people they are?

Jodie Devlin

Yes.  I was also working at the motel with Jean and Stu Comley.  Because my husband at the time was quite ill, nobody actually saw him.  

The newer people who came into town thought Paul was my husband because Paul and I worked together and Shona was behind the scenes doing the bookwork.

When I worked at the motel they thought Stu was my husband because I always referred to his mum, Jean, as Ma.

And he called you “wifey”?

He did.  So someone would come and say, “I’ve just spoken to your husband”, and I’d ask which one?  There was a choice of three.

That would have started some good rumours in a small town!

It was good fun!

And there was this one really weird day when this random woman walked in and said “I know your face!”.

I said, “Yeah I know yours too” thinking ‘ Who the hell are you?’.

 And I remember backtracking for 25 years until we hit primary school and then we realised that we knew each other in primary school and I’ve gone “Now I know who you are”.

Who was that? (laughing – it was me). 

It was you!

You went from working at the newsagent to starting your own cleaning business.

There was a definite need for somebody, so I learned quickly what was expected in town.  It was word of mouth, there was no advertising bar a one line ad in The Canungra Times.

The reputation grew.

What you do is helping people, which is probably part of your nature…

I have two fabulous staff members and they realise part of my role in my business is networking with clients. They become friends, we have a friend relationship and a business relationship.

People know we’re there to do a job and complete what’s needed but also that I’m gong to listen if you need to talk about your sore toe or sick dog.  And every dog knows that Auntie Jodie’s got the dog treats!

You also do community work, like the Show, is that something you’d recommend to people?

If you want to meet people, have a bit of fun, you have to be involved in something.

Working on the bar at the rodeo is the best night of the year.  

What’s so good about the rodeo?

Everyone is there to have a good time.  All the guys behind the bar just party on – we dance, we groove and we hand out drinks and we have a great time.  You meet so many different people and you see them year after year.

They keep coming back?

Keep coming back year after year!

Hopefully we have that again this year.

Certainly, because I really miss that atmosphere and fun.

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About Keer Moriarty 290 Articles
Editor, journo, social media manager and tea lady with Canungra Times.