Remembering to Remember

I’m listening to music that is all levels of bad. For one thing, it’s Australian. For another, it’s from the (very) early 90s. AND it’s a girl band. Singing pop.

But I’m honestly loving it. The music reminds me of that incredibly pure time in my life – when I was living in Sydney with my mother and two sisters. I say pure because I don’t have to filter it of upsets or crises – minor or major – to really enjoy the memories. I just remember being… happy. No ‘buts’. Just happy.

This was about 20 years ago, and as worrying as it is to be able to say that about any point in my life, I remember it all so well. I see the memories like old polaroids – over exposed, with a fading sort of hyper colour, but still retaining the simple pleasure of the images they’ve captured. Polaroids should never go out of style. But I digress.

I remember the smell of a sunny weekend morning, walking to the shops holding my mother’s hand. We’d buy candy at the newsagents. My sisters and I would stare longingly at Tilly’s, the art shop, hankering after the glitter and coloured pens. If we were good we’d get VHS videos at the rental store – one I remember in particular: ‘The God’s Must Be Crazy’.

I remember planting that bottle brush tree outside our house with my mum. She taught me how to pat the soil around it and how to water it every now and then – although it was usually her watering and me playing skip with the hose. I remember how it grew over the years. Now, 20 years later, it is a massive tree, bursting with fluffy red flowers.

I remember the corner-shop just up the road from my place. My mum would send me there to get danish pastries and baklavas when we felt like indulging. Sam, the owner, who I think was Lebanese or something, used to slip an extra danish in the bag for me and give me a quick hug before letting me trip on back home. That was before the weight-related insecurities, when I was too young to know what dieting and carbs and calories even meant. Every sweet that touched my lips was savored without an ounce of guilt mixed in with the ingredients. Ah, heaven. Continue reading Remembering to Remember

Gypsy says Merry Christmas

Christmas, by 6Artificial6

Written a few days ago…

It’s that time of year again. Christmas. I can hardly believe it – it can’t possibly have been a year since the last, when I was fighting to stave off the blues and appreciate the reds, greens and golds of the season instead.

I always feel like I’m in a bit of a time-warp around this time of year but this time the feeling’s increased a hundred fold. In a way I feel the year has sped by, yanking me with it, leaving my head a-whirl as I try and look back to see where it’s all gone. But it also feels like last year’s crazy turmoil happened a hundred years ago – another life; another me. Continue reading Gypsy says Merry Christmas

From one woman-child to another: A letter to my sweet 16

The_Dancer_by_complejoThe dancer, by complejo

Hi 16,

I’m not going to tell you what’s in store for us. We’ve never believed in future-telling (although it’s always fun to have our palms read – just because it feels so nice and tickly when people trace the lines on our hands) and we’ve never wanted to know what happens to us in the future. That doesn’t change with time, so I’ll respect that.

Let me tell you a little about myself though. Don’t worry – I won’t give too much away. I’ll be 25 in about 6 months and I’m freaking out about that a little. 25 is so old and scary and adult-sounding. I still feel like a kid metaphorically wearing shoes way too big for her.  I still have a lot of unanswered questions – sometimes I feel more 16 than almost-25. So while we’ve changed a lot, we still have a lot in common.

I know 16 was an age of swirling, engulfing insecurities so let me tell you a few things to maybe ease the teen angst a little:

Don’t worry that your grades aren’t perfect. They’re good grades although they’ll never be as high as your siblings’. That’s ok though. You are a different person, although the people around you tend to forget that a little sometimes. Don’t you forget ok? Continue reading From one woman-child to another: A letter to my sweet 16

Heated thoughts

The heat of the afternoon smothers her in an uncomfortable embrace. She’s desperate for escape but there is none.

She’s at her desk. Her work is open and politely asking for attention, but unrelated thoughts meddle with her focus.

If three’s a crowd, her brain is home to a multitude. She can almost feel them jostling, shoulder to shoulder, trying to push in front of each other, competing for prominence.

There are those beautiful people who she’s refusing to let go of. People who took her into their collective arms and provided her with a makeshift home and family at a time when she was surrounded only by the rubble of her past mistakes, ugly destruction. They made her sing. Their life and energy worked her stiff muscles, making it easier to move, to move on, to walk away. She misses them and wants them around her so that she can feel at peace again.

There is one who is experiencing that unimaginable pain of having to walk away from something that meant everything. She sees the invisible cuts, the eyes that pretend to focus while hiding wells of hurt, she hears the voice that rings out sweet and strong but knows it is on the verge of breaking, heavy with tears. She recognizes the symptoms of heartbreak and aches to ease the constant throbbing pain.   Continue reading Heated thoughts

Christmas flies



Christmas flies. Delightful and intensely annoying at the same time. They buzz in around October and remind you that the year is drawing to an end and by the time the end of the year actually rolls around you’re thoroughly sick of them. If they weren’t around, though, you’d notice immediately. They seem to be getting less and less now, which is sad. But maybe that means something too. That we’re growing up, that we don’t anticipate them anymore, that there’s no need for them anymore. I miss them.


My feelings about Christmas tend to fluctuate these days. Sometimes I surreptitiously switch on some carols on my iPod and sing along in my head while at office, barely able to contain my childish excitement that Christmas time is finally here. At other times, I couldn’t feel less Christmassy, less happy or festive. Which frustrates me, because I love Christmas – not for the presents and the sales and the over-commercialization of the season – but for the simple thrill of doing something so quaintly traditional, something I’ve been doing since I was a little kid.


It’s sad how things have changed through the years though. Not sad so much as bittersweet, I guess. I remember how we used to do things when I was small. Nothing out of the ordinary really, nothing large scale, but it was what I was brought up doing, so it was just…special. Continue reading Christmas flies

The Fight


Lights off.


She closes her eyes, savouring the inky blackness, feeling it wash over her skin. Cool. Slinky. Soft.


She doesn’t recall where the light switch is, but she doesn’t care… She can’t see anything but the black and it’s a total mind fuck. Standing still, she could be in a tiny box, just big enough for her frame, or in an endless expanse of nothing. Standing still she’d never know.


She closes her eyes and waits for him. His warmth against her cool skin. His stubble against her smooth cheek. His larger frame, enveloping her small one.


One disappearing into the other. Both disappearing in the darkness.


If the real thing is anywhere near as good as she remembers… “Mmm” she murmurs to herself, waiting, aching, wanting.


The touch comes.


Her eyes fly open.


Something’s wrong. Continue reading The Fight