Lazy Luddite Log

27.10.10

2001-2005

As once century turned into another and the cheers of a New Year's Eve party faded into echoes I reflect that things were much of a muchness but there were some exceptions to that in store for me...

There are plenty of ways I can fill the time and feel satisfied with my life even if nothing much is happening. Things like deciding that even nerds need exercise and lap swimming regularly... or reading on topics like popular twentieth century music history... or writing random short fiction. And then there is always some party or dinner on the weekend to look forward to. Still sometimes things just happen to you in new ways...

Every once in a while that patented courting method worked for me. In this time frame - once more - it worked only once but gave me a most surprising life experience. I was at a party... the host told one of her guests that I was nice and interesting... that guest made moves on me. We interacted. We exchanged numbers. We talked and arranged to meet. This was an effort on my part as it involved rural public transport to visit my new friend living in a tiny Victorian township!

We got along very well but wanted different things. She was set on the long-term plan of a subsistance farmer producing her own everything including human progeny in numbers. She had one as it was - a lovely precocious toddling daughter. While my hopes were far more vague I knew they were contrary to hers. One statement I made was that I must always live "within walking distance of a milk bar". I am a child of suburbia and need population. As much as we enjoyed our time together we also agreed that anything between us was doomed. So we called it a day...

And then as the result of a phone call we changed our minds. Companionship in the here-and-now was worthwhile and we would just see what happens. In looking back at this I am reminded that I am more subject to instant gratification than my self-image tells me. It was a fascinating but difficult time filled with both fun and frustration as we negotiated between different preferences and philosophical stances. It had to end however - at 12 months I think - and I came away from it with a number of things. One was an appreciation of the life of a sole parent... Another was the fascination of observing human development in a child (I now think that I find personal development fascinating in all ages). I also got a fuller sense of both the charming and dismal aspects of rural life. And I have yet another friend with whom to talk on the phone.

While I spent many weekends away from home, I spent many weekdays working in the office of the Australian Democrats. Office work inevitably blurred with tasks undertaken in my growing number of roles within the party. This cause I had chosen and those I worked alongside became a powerful motivating force in my life and in some ways I think I was at my most proactive and competent at that time. At my most involved I was coordinating the behind-the-scenes organization (as distinct from political campaign work) of the entire state division.

I was sitting once at Huntingdale station in flannal shirt and jeans with my back to the wall and my feet on the bench. I was on the way into State Office. Suddenly the incongruity hit me - someone like me with such a responsibility in my hands and party secrets in my backpack as I waited for the train. Still it was a kind of calling for me and some fun things I remember include forming the Monash Democrats with Julie, developing draft mission statements with Corey, and campaigning for the election of Jess.

Politics amost devoured my life but I still did other things alongside it. I decided to codify my clerical work experience by undertaking a TAFE course in administration and look for roles accordingly. I also moved into a new share household on the invitation of Polly & Olav who purchased a home in Mulgrave. This setting fitted my lone walker persona well and the presence at Waverley Gardens of a cut-price cinema helped me while away slack Sundays. In some ways seeing a movie alone is the best way to see it - just you and the story you are drawn into.

However towards the end of this time things were starting to pall. A desire for emotional self-sufficiency is all very well but can be difficult to find. I was at a loss and turning to and fro wondering what to do. Things were set to change a lot... become more complex and generally better. And both luck and making active decisions played into that development as I look back over the most recent part of my life to date...

Concluded here.

Cross-posted here.

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