So, I’d finally made it to Melbourne !
Thanks to my wealthy benefactor, I had a day of reflection, with a comfortable place to stay (very comfortable indeed), so I spent the day strolling around the city, thinking, streaming, reflecting on what I’d been through.
But foremost on my mind was that I would imminently see my family again, get to hug my wife and sons.
I got woken up at 1:30am by one of those bloody evil scumbag leech pieces of human shit that we call ‘scammers’.
They’re higher on the list than rapists, pedophiles, violent criminals – but still lower than cockroaches and rats.
They’d texted me pretending to be Australia Post, telling me my parcel was mislaid and I should follow the link and put in my personal details.
What bothers me most is that they prey on vulnerable people. (Because only someone impaired would fall for it, let’s be honest). So elders, people with disabilities, that kind of thing.
Don’t get me started though. I think we’ve become more tolerant of evil, more “meh, what are you gonna do?” about it. I think we, as the poem says, should “rage against the dying of the light” (https://poets.org/poem/do-not-go-gentle-good-night)
That’s what this stuff is, really, it’s like re-branding pedophiles to “Minor Attracted Persons” to de-stigmatise it. Don’t destigmatise evil. Don’t tolerate it. If some of the stuff going on around you seems crazy or evil – talk about it. We’ve become afraid to do that, I think.
Maybe I’m just too old.
Not too old to dress up as Gandalf though, upon waking, when I find a fluffy white towel and bathrobe. That’s just giggles.
And that’s also how we fight darkness, I think. Be light-filled. Share. Have fun. Tell the truth.
Now, if you’ve read through all of this journal, you’re either one of my sons, as a grown man (I love you so much, if I’m gone now, know that I adored you with all my being), or you’re a highly patient and tolerant individual.
So I owe you the truth ..
I’m writing this on New Years Eve of 2022, it’s 10:53pm. I’ve struggled a little subsequent to the walk. Health stuff, direction stuff. I’ve let this task go neglected.
And now — my memory is spotty !
I don’t really remember too much of the day, it’s a bit of a blur.
The videos speak for themselves, and I think there are some worthwhile reflections in there, the things I’d learned from the walk:
- a broken life can be fixed
- kindness is the antidote to sorrow
- kindness is like a tree that we plant together, we both get nurtured by it, and it can yield unexpected fruit
- You’re never too old or too broken, if you have the courage, the will, to seek out your remedy, you can find it
I remember a quest .. I had a DAILY DONOR DARE OF DOOooOOoM to find someone to hug me. It’s captured in one of the live-streams above .. and oh it was so awful.
Melbourne felt .. broken. Harsh. Unblinking and a little crazed, if I’m completely honest. Walking the city dressed as a superhero in search of a hug – it sounds like it might be fun, but it was so awkward, cringey and difficult.
But we got there in the end 😀
Later in the afternoon, met up with Vera from Morwell (who conceived of the Morwell to Melbourne in March Challenge), Steve from Ullladulla (an absolutely lovely man, and a kind of brother, as we were both survivors of the same kind of cancer).
I also got this video of a young fan, I believe recorded in stealth by a parent or maybe he was looking to steal Barry’s job as unpaid sound intern.
Sadly, there had been no further media contact, something that I’d been hoping for. The day the ABC interviewed me, the charity (The Kids’ Cancer Project) saw about thirty thousand dollars flow in for paediatric cancer research.
So I’d been hoping for a little more media attention, and if I were better & smarter, I might have been able to engineer it .. but I didn’t want to be cynical, I wanted to EARN regard, not steal it.
But the news cycle was saturated with that mad bastard Putin, floods and still pretty intense covid stuff.
It was a long, peaceful day, and after all my walking, I actually did a fair amount of traipsing around the city, but always staying away from Federation Square.
I was nervous about tomorrow, when I would formally complete the walk, I had no idea if there’d be 5 people or 500, I just knew that I was pretty garbage at the self promotion stuff.
I was also distracted by a kind of melancholy joy – sad that it was over, happy with how far I’d come (literally and figuratively)
That night, after meeting up with Steve (I should have done a better job, gotten him drunk or something, made some better memories, I just was so .. distracted. But we had a long and lovely chat, just a couple of old fellas bumming around Melbourne talking about life, death and the universe.
When I got back to the hotel and prepared for sleep, I was sent some fun pictures – apparently a kid had designed a gamer avatar of Captain Australia in a platform called Roblox. The uniform isn’t exactly right, but he got the beard and the sunnies 😀