Tonight I walked out of my flat into the ever-present dusk of a Melbourne night. The day had turned cold and I had returned home, chilled, to armour myself against the wind. I stepped out, limbs warm and looked up to see a colony of bats drifting haphazardly across the grey, a fitting moment for the night before Halloween. Melbourne has been a swarm of costumed revellers, day of the dead skulls and glitter, zombies with mouths sewn shut, ladies ready for the races with hats as wide as Saturn’s rings.
My pledge to myself is to spend one weekend a month in Melbourne alone to take up what ever cultural or culinary opportunities that arise. This is my first weekend and so far I have travelled to Abadan and Tehran, through the jungles of Colombia in 1909 and 1940, to the Pilbara with Nyarri Nyarri Morgan, through the West Village of New York with the heart and eye of a dog and on a meandering journey through Tolstoy’s War and Peace where, for a brief moment, I was a part of the performance.
What it is to feel alive. These are days to remember when my path seems too well-trodden. What it is to be fortunate, to have this space, to know with a rush of blood to the heart and the eye just how textured the world is and what it is to live and be and tell and listen to stories. It is good, I think, to not be fixed in a path or a mindset. I had more Iranian films in my sights but heard of a performance on the steps of Northcote Town Hall; forty locals performing Metallica’s Enter Sandman, headbanging encouraged. It was sublime. There were many people performing for the first time, primary school kids, interpretive dancers, a guy signing the lyrics, smoke machines and the joy of that loud, wonderful resonant song.
The world is a wondrous place. Get out of your house, switch off that device, go do something you have never done before.