Hymns – Chapter Two

Chapter Two


The word “HI” was wiped into the fog of the window, condensation trickling down, weeping. The cold outside kissed the glass while the suffocating and muggy smell of children tried to escape inside.

He sat there, head against the window, feeling the bite from outside. The world around him screamed.

A “Where’s Wally” book flipped constantly beside him, as two kids slapped the pages enough to give a librarian a headache. If only she knew. Another two kids sat in front, bags on their backs, prepared to go off to the warground/playground. Their hands gripping the bar of the seat in front .The aisle of the bus, covered in the morning dew and random pieces of grass, that snuck in from leather shoes outside.

He couldn’t be bothered even trying to describe to his senses what occurred outside. He saw it everyday. He was shutting his eyes again. There was a lot of contrast between the skin of his eyelids. Two worlds.

The other world came into view as his imagination flew up the screen and turned on the projector of his mind.

The bus lay on its side, wedged between a giant lump of rock covered in moss and a few proud and strong gum trees. The stillness hung heavy from such a dramatic scar in the landscape, with the muffled screams of children.  He was outside the bus. The hero. Well he was about to become the hero. His hand through a shattered window, pulling out the pathetic children inside. “Where’s Wally” lay flat against the window, no one was looking for him now. Flash forward, he stood proud at school assembly, commended for his bravery.

There was a jerk. He was there. The border of the worlds slid open. The real day begins.

The monotone air hit his nostrils once again. Its cool quench was the official and familiar smell of the last eight years of his life.



Wind can be strong.

Our balcony didn’t do this, we also do not live in a hotel.

A set of strong winds just hit. That led to a flat piece of wooden furniture on the balcony flying over and down into the downstairs neighbours balcony. It was a considerate enough piece of furniture to land down on that balcony and not one to the left. The one to the left has a giant glass table. I think it is karma, since I rescued this piece of furniture out of the gutter. Somehow Cal let me.

The only problem is that these neighbours are the ones we think dobbed on us about having some items in our parking spot downstairs. This will just give them fuel. So I wrote a letter in my twelve-year-old looking writing, and sticky taped it to their front door, saying sorry and stuff and hoping to get the gutter furniture back. Then swiftly walked away, in case they were home and caught me. Which would mean an actual conversation, we dont want that.

Ok the word furniture is a loose term. Its a few planks of wood nailed together that leans against our wall on the balcony. Probably why it was in the gutter, waiting for the garbage truck. It weighs about 15 KG, and somehow still got over the balcony railing. It totally would have killed anyone, if they had been basking in the rain and wind below. Thankfully no one was, though a snail COULD have been. Or an overfed dog.

I returned home a little later, with the piece of wood leaning against our front door. Saved. Now to find some kind of strap in the street to fasten it to the wall.

The junk wood left against our door by the neighbour.

It is an odd time of year.

Attica – Not linked to Atticus Finch.

I am about to NOT talk about this guy.

So this is one of the most famous ones. When I say ones, I mean on the list of prizes I won. Attica, the only association I had prior to this was it kinda sounded like one of the main characters out of that Grade 10 compulsory book, To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus Finch. I hope that is right, otherwise I didnt event retain that.

This restaurant was one that people went, “ohhhh…” or “woowww” when I said I was going there. Particularly my good mate Nick who has been a chef the past 15 years or so. And since he has cooked me so many fantastic meals in the past it made sense to invite him along to this experience. So here we go.

I will say that the experience overall was one of the best so far. Why? Not because of the amazing waiters, not because of the beautiful surrounds, or the expensive hand towels in the bathroom. But because of the simple wow factor of every dish presented and the origins of the dishes themselves, Australia.

The place was so well set out with simplicity and elegance. There were several servers who were all very knowledgable and I liked the fact they shared the role at each table, so there were many personalities that appeared. They cared about what they were doing and enjoyed it at the same time. We chose the eight course degustation with matching wines. It was perfect (maybe not the next day with the hangover I had!) and as each dish came out, another unique presentation came with it. As I said, I am not the best with describing the way each dish tasted, though they were all different. Each had its own character and the wines sang out that character.

The dish that stood out the most for me though, was the Native Fruits dessert. To discover so many fruits from Australia that I had never tasted and then combine it into a dish made me smile. I felt educated, and also so impressed at the variety we have here.

They called our cab, after three hours of enjoyment, it was an experience and not just a dinner. Thanks Attica!

I sat where that happy lady is sitting.

One of their signature dishes. A potato cooked in the soil it grew in.

My favourite dish of the night, Fruits of Australia.