Or: Stuff from the Magical Mystery Suitcase that I had forgotten all about.
Old journals – I’ve always kept a journal, but it is truly bizarre to read your own 17 year old thoughts. Example from 2/07/94 –
Thursday night was pretty good, but boring! We went to McDonalds and sat around for what felt like hours! We then got in the cars and dragged the main about 10 million times. Then we went to FX Zone where we watched a brilliant display of arguing from Kylie and Jody, then Kylie took off and we lost her, so I got into Peter’s car with Carla and David and we went to Kylie’s house to wait for them. Here they were all waiting in the park for us and said someone had called the police about us and they would be here any minute. So we waited and they came. Said they had a report of drag racing of all things! We told them this couldn’t be so they left and sat on the corner in their car for 15 minutes, then came round the block again.
Man oh man – exciting times in Wagga when you’re 17. No wonder the youth pregnancy rate down there is so high. Turns out I had trouble using full stops back then too.
There was also a very full journal from around the time Skye did her whole ‘I hate you so the world will hate you too’ thing. It made me a little sad to read that back. I was so confused, and so upset about it all, and all I wanted to do when I was reading it was reach back and give myself advice. Really; the world isn’t ending. You will get through this. Hang on another 3 months and you will become friends with some seriously awesome people.
And WOW was I hung up on Angus. Most every journal entry for a period of about 2 years, even up to 12 months after we had broken up, mentioned him in some way.
My workbook from Sunday school – I went for about 3 months before I did my first Communion. I have no idea why I still have this. I would have thought this was the sort of thing mothers kept. It’s weird, though, to see my handwriting and my thoughts at that age (I guess about 7 or 8 ). Like, I had to write down my favourite sounds, and I only had room for 3, and one of them was ‘the sound of the lawn mower’. Also, I was beginning to figure stuff out – stuff about how the world works and how to make my way. I had to write a list of ‘what my family does together’ – I put eat dinner, go to the park, and go to mass. Never once in my whole life have I gone to mass with my family – we were definitely not a family of church goers. Yet I wrote it, which I thought was interesting.
A letter from Adam that was a whole exercise book long – it’s funny how things manifest themselves. The problems we went through seemed like such trauma at the time, and yet reading all that stuff back it seems almost funny. I was obviously a fairly big drama queen, and poor Adam was all in a spin. It makes me wish we were still in touch.
And a lot of other random stuff. It’s funny, I know who I am right now, and I thought I had evolved somehow to be here. Like, my tastes have changed, and I’m more mature, and I appreciate things like poetry and art a lot more. This is just not true. I guess the stuff in this suitcase would go from mostly about 1992 through until around 1997 – later years of high school and most years of uni. There are so many scrap pieces of paper with little notes written on them, pages of books and notebooks with pieces of poetry, and articles about things that interested me at the time – like a 1994 article from Time magazine about the Archibald Price. It’s a bit of a reminder to me of the ways I HAVEN’T changed. And in a way that’s kinda comforting.