Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I am listening to rock and roll on my iPhone on the 2:30 pm Palace On Wheels that runs express from Pakenham to Caulfield, except it doesn’t. At Westall, two handsome Sierra Leone kids enter the carriage and are sitting two rows behind me smoking some righteous weed. These kid’s parents had managed to escape a bloody war by sea or plane to Australia. They had escaped curfews, glazed expressions and machine guns. The world is full of sad souls. For unknown reasons the Australia government doesn’t want to take their fair share of refugees. No one applauds my virtuous thoughts. The sweet smell brings back memories of my youth, sitting on the beach at Black Rock eating magic mushrooms while my girlfriend Tina knocked her chillum against a chunk of bluestone breakwater and stuffed some black hashish into the opening and lit up. I am dressed in a light black raincoat, a coat that you might expect John Cassaveties to wear in a detective film. I have my folder in my lap. I am wearing my nametag, which says, outsourcing counselor in Times New Roman red italics. It looks official but doesn’t scare the kids away. My iPhone went off, someone needed me. A client was having an emergency. I answered the iPhone; my client was waiting at Murrumbeena railway station. I explained that I was on an express, he said, no problem as an old lady had collapsed at the railway crossing and the express would have to stop. The areas where zones 1 and 2 meet are like a Bermuda triangle for pensioners dying, like lemmings they are drawn to train tracks for that final journey.