First time here? Before you go on -> Read Me <- please read this. Thanx!

Saturday, May 28, 2005

(*) Diary Archives

The funny thing is... I was blogging before I'd even heard of the term 'blog'!!! I'd been posting my thoughts on my website page - a rather labourious task, compared to the ease of an actual blog. Here's a small sample from the archives.

Malster’s Maladroit Malapert Malodorous Malapropisms
Saturday 27th September 2003 ...

The Govt here makes me laff! The street where I used to live in Bathurst before I moved to the Coast has been described by the State Housing Minister as "socially dysfunctional, it's run down, it has been the centre of vandalism, graffiti and crime and most, if not all, the people have wanted to move" (Western Advocate 26 Sept 2003:1). The probable plan is to bulldoze the lot! I personally didn't have any trouble when I was living there, altho I did see the police break into a few empty houses, drug-deals go down across the street, windows smashed, a man chasing another with a large lump of wood, and a car totally thrashed with rocks! So...maybe the minister is right! hahahaaaa! ...

My mum is really sick. Probably going downhill pretty quickly, by the look of it. Bad one.

Malster’s Maladroit Malapert Malodorous Malapropisms
Wednesday 11th February 2003, Central Coast, NSW, Australia

You know, when I received the official final divorce papers, I suddenly realised that I felt 'ashamed' about being divorced - not about the actual divorce (that's a whole other smorgasbord of emotions!), but being known as someone who's "divorced" is something I realised I felt ashamed of.

Mal’s Musings
22nd November 2001, Banora Point, NSW, Australia

It was the day I was leaving my home town - it felt like in disgrace. The car was packed to overflowing, as I headed firstly East before I began the long haul Northwards to the Tweed, so far to try a fresh start, a clean head, a new heart. Empty, sad, frustrated, isolated, just plain numb. Petrol gauge needed a good nudge, as I pulled into the Raglan Mobile, for what seemed like the last time. Nan and Pa’s seemed so far away now, even within eyesight.

I filled-up, not even thinking, automatically reacting to the mundane of daily routine. All I really wanted was to keep moving, to get away, to try again - somehow, somewhere. As I stood in the long cue with the plastic in my hand, I heard a voice from behind my right shoulder, “Mr Mal!” As I turned, I saw the face of one of my Scripture students from last year, Jean. Now in Year 7 at McKillop College, she was one of the number of that Year-6 ‘feral-class’ of mine from last year. She was a good kid, really, but put them all together, and they literally had a group-attention-span of 30-seconds! “Hello, Mr Mal. It’s good to see you,” she smiled, and much to my stunned amazement, she came over and gave me a big bear hug, right there in the queue.

The words kinda stumbled out, as I tried to rise above the stupor of my mindlessness of the day. “Hi. How’s things going?” “Oh, I miss having you for Scripture, Mr Mal. You know, Religious Studies at High School is just sooo boring! I wish we had you again this year! I learnt heaps!” And with that, she gave me another hug.

You know, after a year with that group of children, I felt tired, annoyed, exasperated - that nothing I’d been trying to teach had got through. But here, right out of right-field, right at the least expected moment, at possibly my weakest and most fragile instant, God comes along and gives me some deep-abiding comforting-consolation. “The past continues; the seeds you planted I will continue to grow.” Not one little bit of last years’ Year-6 experience was at all wasted.

I drove on numbly grieving, weeping a deep sense of loss.

Mal’s "Editorial" No.1
21st November 2001, Banora Point, NSW, Australia

What happens when you begin to loose faith in yourself? That’s a question I’m asking myself at the moment. But that’s not what I wanna talk about.

The water beyond the back of the breaking surf up here is exquisitely clear. The sandy bottom seems only a few feet beneath you, but reality is the glistening green water is much deeper than it seems. When the wind is up, it splashes a heavy mist against your sweating face, and I’m taken back 20 years, to sailing a blowy Sou-Easter across to Reef Beach. Some things never change, it seems.

It’s taken me a few weeks to get the courage (nerve? foolishness?) to go ‘out the back’ in a large surf. The ocean has always unsettled me - I have never been fully comfortable with its unexpected turns - I confess my deepest respect for her. The last few weeks’ have been a wonderful experience coming to grips with learning how to swim again, how to survive in the water, and how not best to drown(!). I’ve enjoyed incredibly experiences in 3-4-foot crystal-clear waves, the exhilaration of dropping-off a smooth deep-green shimmering face, and the thrusting-drive of a wall of water forcing you forwards - as you hang-on for dear-life! Now, I’ve learnt how to ‘steer’ the thing - ahh, that’s much better!

A surfboard? You’ve gotta be kiddin! Yup, I bought myself one for $35.00 (complete with a broken-nose repair), but it’s been just too long (22 years - the last time I rode a board, I ‘finn-chopped’ myself on the left leg - still bare the scar, at Freshwater Beach, Sydney). Instead, I’ve been maximising the waves on a ‘Boogey-Board’, which is , for me, much more accessible - and a lot less tiring! I’ve got the complete rig - flippers, ankle-straps, etc, and I’ve been getting pretty good at it. Finally mastered paddling and kicking at the same time - wax proved to be the missing ingredient!

The swell was kicking-in at 3-4 meters (that’s 9-12 foot) at the exposed ocean beach. From atop Point Danger, it looked awesome - and there were about 70 other riders out there to boot. I decided to go for it - I’d never been out in stuff that big before. The best place to get out there was in the southern-most rip, along the rock breakwater-wall, and it only took a comparatively short time and minimal effort to get ‘out the back’ with all these other blokes. There were a few boogey-boarders here as well, so I kept going across to where they were. The swell was only rolling in cleanly at about 6 foot at this point, and I was easily rolling in their wind-swept motion. We all saw it and whooped together - a dark-grey dolphin was jumping-out and effortlessly surfing a wave right in front of us.

Then the next large set came in, and I don’t think many of us were prepared! When it started breaking about 1 km out to sea, we knew it was gonna be a big bastard. Anyway, we all paddled and kicked like mad to try to get out behind it, but a wall of foaming water 10-feet-high advancing atop of you was a little unsettling - to say the least! I ducked underneath the foaming edge, just as I’d done 50 times previously. But my lack of experience with so much moving water knocked me for six! It must have re-broke right atop my head! Although my lungs were full of air, being held under water for 10 seconds - count slowly to ten, and you’ll see what I mean - seemed like forever. I knew I’d pop--up eventually, and I was still connected to the board with the wrist-strap. When the tumble-drier had passed and finished its cycle on me, I did bob-up, and took a long gasp of fresh air, looking over my shoulder. Another seemingly huge wall of white seething foam was rapidly bearing down on me - again. Another big breath, and duck - and woosh! Tumble-drier - big-time! When II did re-surface again, I have to admit that for the first time, I did feel momentarily quite scared. But I deliberately told myself, “Don’t Panic! Take it easy!”, and slipped back atop the board, trying to get past the next large wall of rushing foam racing towards me. I felt so small. This one didn’t ‘mash’ me too badly, but I knew that I’d been beat. I couldn’t even see any of the other guys out here, as yet another large set came hurtling towards the outside bank. I caught my breath again, and turned back towards the beach, which suddenly seemed such a long, long way away. As I started to kick, my legs felt o-so heavy, yet I knew I couldn’t stay out here for much longer today - it was just too big for me. It really didnn’t take too long for me to catch and ride the wash into the beach, but I sat there sweating and breathing heavily for a few minutes, resting firmly atop my board, peeling off my flippers.

2 days’ later, I drove past my favourite beach, and the surf was a wonderful 3-4 foot SE long easy break. What I would normally consider practically perfect. But for the first time, at this familiar place, I felt afraid. Was I too scared to go back into the bastard again? Was I foolish for not respecting the ocean - you betya! I know I must get back onto it again - get back onto the horse after its’ tthrow me. The swell is much more manageable now. I will be back.

Did I loose faith in myself? Momentarily, I think so. Did this affect my outlook on the whole of the ‘big-picture’ of my life? Momentarily, I think so.

“You’ve got to stop glancing back over your shoulder all the times at the things that have passed, the things we have to move away from. You never know, you might turn into a pillar of salt.” George Johnston, “A Cartload of Clay”

“This, then, is what it came to. The chief thing was to keep on living. That was the chief thing.”


Blog of Mallard the Malster - some of my Thoughts, Ideas, Comments, Observations, Editorials, Musings, Rantings, Ravings and Current Objective Critical Relative Subjectivism of Maljam the Loopey Mallard 

Message Board Banner