I had a chat with one of my best buddies, Simon, last week. It's kind of a discussion about our time in Christchurch, the earthquake, subsequent moves to other countries, and how we dealt with all that. The second half is at Simon's blog, link at the bottom.
Simon: Hi David, how are you?
David: I'm good thanks Simon, sitting in bed in Melbourne. It's just after 8am. How are you?
I'm doing a new series of pastings which are inspired by The Little Price - you can check it out at forever. I only recently read the book, but it was great, and articulated a few things I'd been thinking about. As you may recall, the narrator draws a picture of a boa constrictor, but the adults, lacking imagination, see only a hat. The grown-ups are very strange.
One time on the train, I heard a young girl exclaim, 'look! A graffiti!' I remember seeing two young children jumping with excitement as they watched a rubbish truck pick up bins. Oh what moments to see things for the first time! I know that as you grow, you learn, and everything you encounter shapes your life - it's an important part of development. But what if you could reclaim some of that wonder? Try and see things freshly without all the understanding your life has given you? Pick up a nearby object and study it, stripping away all preconceptions. Let it engage your senses, and imagine encountering it for the first time. You might just learn something.
(Also, I need your help for an upcoming project! If you could recommend a book to a stranger, what would it be? What's something that you've read that has made an impact? Something you'd really like people to experience. Comment below. Thanks)
My local train station is Batman (check out some colouring I did there). It's on the Upfield line, and a trip to the city centre takes about 20 minutes. I really like catching the train, and think I live about the right distance - any more would be tiring, less would seem trivial. I find it all rather romantic. Here are some things I like:
*Coming out of the city loop at North Melbourne at night time. From under the ground, to a yard filled with hundreds of beautiful lights. Really magical
*Passing trains - they seem to come from nowhere with such fury, and then are gone in an instant
*As the train slows, watching fence posts blur, before becoming individually discernible. Also the way the train kicks back slightly when it stops, and the brakes kick in
*People watching and listening is great. People are beautiful and weird
*The Brunswick tram depot at night is a huge cavern of light
*Seeing people running for the train. It's such a desperate, hopeful moment
*General rhythms of the wheels over the tracks
I popped over to New Zealand for the first nine days of September. It was really nice being home. I went to Christchurch, Wellington, and Palmerston North, before retracing my steps. My mum had a hip operation, so I hung out with her and we watched the US Tennis Open. My twin sister, Kate, was down from Auckland, and it was out 27th birthday. I asked my dad what it meant to him to be a dad on father's day. I really wished I'd had more than 48hrs in Palmerston.
In Wellington, I stayed with Beth and we had dinner, went to a concert, walked about.
I stayed at my old flat in Christchurch. It was wonderfully familiar. I had a birthday get-together and saw my friends. I cycled around the cordoned off centre city: it was rather saddening. Alice, Eamonn and I set up a new blog of story readings - My Kafka Baggage.
Three of my four flights were delayed, and it really bothered me. I don't enjoy waiting at airports, but I tried to reconcile that with the magic of flight. Myself and hundreds of other people, all much heavier than air, travelling at hundreds of kilometres an hour through the sky.