April 29, 2016

The Grand Reunion

A year ago, HK and I plunged in, and briefly lost ourselves, in the melancholic, gastronomic, amber-rinsed night cobbled backstreets of Lisbon. For a week, our stomachs bulged to eruption point with seafood, pastries, and vino, our buns sculpted by steep strands and staircases, spirits lit by ubiquitous 60 cent espressos. We marvelled at plaza-top […]

The Butterfly Lady

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On the day of a cool change, the morning still hot and hazy from bushfire smoke, I walked to the gardens where the lawn had been watered. I walked over the grass barefoot and my soles became wet in the dew. An old woman ambled in my direction, muttering to herself, the flowers, and me: “Ahhcatchum, […]

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If You Can’t Be Good…

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It’s often been said that when it’s three o’clock in New York, it’s still 1938 in London. I think Bette Midler said it first. It wasn’t always the case. In Thomas Jefferson’s day, both cities were “cloacinas of all the depravities of human nature.” Temporal disparity aside, the two sayings dovetail in a common truth: there’s always something heady […]

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The Rural Philosopher

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I was burning through regional Victoria with M: a social change consultant-entrepreneur, friend and some-time colleague, our sedan bound for Shepparton, a two-hour straight shot north-west of Melbourne through scorched expanse, wilted gums, and that eerie empty loneliness of the Victorian bush. We’d been up at the crack of dawn each morning that week, bee-lining for […]

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Between the Waves

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In Yankalilla, a place you’ve never heard of, I recline in an olive lounge chair inside a café run by wholesome rural women with tattoos and pink hair. Three golden retrievers guard the door, stocky and ring-curled like plump sheep, lapping for love and belly rubs. Out the window, a great hill looms over the town, […]

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