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April 30, 2007

 

Introductions: Katie Harris, Berwick, Victoria, Australia

 

A true-blue Aussie

 

By Madeleine Slaughter

 

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Emma Sparrow/ The Tattoo

Katie Harris

Although born in Berkshire, England, Katie Harris is a true-blue Aussie.

“Living in Berwick, a town in the Australian state of Victoria, gives 17-year-old Harris ample opportunity to enjoy the things that rule her life: cricket, swimming, surfing, running, sport in general, friends, family and food.

Harris, a Year 11 student at St. Margaret’s School, moved to Australia from England as a young girl.

When Harris moved Down Under, she joined a Little Athletics team and remembers watching the older kids run, thinking, “One day I want to be like that … fast.”

The determination paid off as she realized her goal.

Harris, a cross country runner, has broken some of those kids’ records and is running faster than they ever did.

In her Athletics Club, Harris got the chance to train to run 10km in one hour. Lots of sweat went into the gruelling training. In addition to training four times a week, she ran 3km after school each night.

But by the time the event day rolled around, Harris was so prepared and ready to go that she ran the 10km in less than an hour.

“It was an amazing feeling,” Harris said with a grin.

More than anything, though, Harris likes to have fun.

She remembers one contest with a friend to determine “who could stuff the most grapes in their mouth.”

The grape-stuffing game, she said, “was the funniest thing ever!”

Harris is especially close to her father and said she confides in him about everything.

“My dad is like my best friend,” she said shyly.

Because her father “is always away” on business, Harris said she takes on extra responsibilities to make sure her mother does not have to do too much work around the home.

Harris said she and her mother remember the “good times and not the bad.” She said she also does what she can for her mother, to “make her feel extra special on her b’day and stuff.”

If Harris ruled the world, she said, she’d do something right away to get the right clothes for her four-foot-eleven-inch frame.

She wants to “make people realize they need to make short length adult size pants for us short arses and nicer shoes for people with small feet, as in me!”


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