My Golf Debut, A Soccer Cork & People Smuggling (7-13 December)

Monday 7/12/87

It arrived today: a letter (8 pgs) from Mark. I was woken at 8:30 – a call from Cameron about golf . . I got ready & waited: didn’t even hear the postman go past – but checked around 9:20. It made me angry, most of it (all I could think of was [privacy omission] & his lie to me) Mima came. A Life in WordsAt Yorkey’s Knob (finally – around 10:30) golf was hot, but great fun. I got better as I progressed. [I’d hope so: from memory it took me 25 shots to reach the first hole. Classic! One of the boys actually made a hole in one later on.] Mark R was there (I didn’t recognise him – mima had to tell me. Wonder if he still likes me?) we only did one round (9 holes) then ate and went to mima’s. A quick dip in the pool, before had to leave. . Took Glyn & Cameron home before me. Wanna go to the beach tomorrow. Will ring her after 9:30 Forgot to ring Jo at all. Umah. [Privacy omission] confessed it was Fiona she was annoyed with on Sat. nite. God my excretory system has been [w]reaking havoc with me lately. [I’m surprised I didn’t go into more detail…] Got blisters today from my high cuts (gym boots) Played golf in socks mostly!! Wrote back to Mark tonite only 4 pages (rushed & messy at the end) will send as soon as possible. Mentioned I wanted to talk to him etc . . .

Tuesday 8/12/87

Guess what? I arise around 9:00, and the postie still hasn’t been (not that I’m expecting anything) he comes at 9:15-9:30 & we [my sister and I, I assume] race to the letterbox. Lo & behold, there’s another letter from Mark. It was better. the things he wrote sounded more sincere – yesterday’s sounded false & forced: like a boring chore. So anyway Fi & I went to town around 11:00 (11:30) (I’d begun to write back this morning – mum’d already sent last nite’s – nicer than the retaliatory one I’d written↑) [in my diary this arrow pointed back up towards the phrase “last nite’s” …so, in a confusing way, I was saying that the second letter I’d begun to writing was nicer than the first (‘retaliatory’) one I’d scribbled ‘last night’ …which, thanks to mum’s efficiency, was already on its way to him.] Initially looking for clothes & presents, we ended up scouring every clothes shop, handbag shop, shoe shop, leather shop, art shop, looking for a “purse-on-a-string” (had to be black leather too) for Fiona. Not only in town: Earlville & KMart too. Eventually bought a black purse in D.J’s & black leather thonging (for a strap.) A Life in WordsHome just after 5:00, I finished writing to Mark. Was so tired. Watched TV. So hot now. Am so sore from golf- my arms & upper torso muscles aching! (Blisters on feet & sore legs from all the walking today too.) NITE!!

Wednesday 9/12/87

Very bad sleep.. woke up occaisionally : but had to get up just before 6:00 -the headache was so bad. (Worse lying down) Complained to mum- took 2 tablets [painkillers, most likely paracetamol] – read the paper, but had to go back to bed- & fell asleep. Woke around 8:30-9 all better. I think it’s the heat : got it on & off all day as we went in aircond. to outside heat (temp. extremes) [Hmm, my guess now would be more dehydration than ‘heat stroke’… I never (very rarely) drank water back then *grimace*] Didn’t do photos . . no time (bumming around KMart Earlville & town.) Got the neg’s [negatives] tho’ from the dark room (to sort through & pick out what’s wanted) when Fi got her report card. Swim (& cleaned the car) at mima’s ..then indoor soccer. I played in the warm up/practise game – fun tho’ I had no shoes on – sore feet & I got kneed in the thigh (hurty!) went briefly to KFC, before picking up Sue. [Outside the drive-in] I got in the [car] boot (shit scared) & they hid her [under a blanket or doona I think. Smuggling people in to the drive in was relatively common devious practice apparently but this was my first time.] . . so we paid for 3 but got 5 in .. & we even won the 2 comp. tickets! (Ha, ha!) Lethal Weapon & Lost Boys (both AGAIN!) are excellent Am so dead!

Thursday 10/12/87

Well, I got up around 8:30 – later than usual (earlier, I mean) and I started to sort through the big carton of “stuff”. […the carton I collected from the school dark room yesterday, that I thought only contained negatives…] Only a small portion was negatives, but they took ages to get thru’? Then I looked through the rest of the box: old photos (’75, ’74, ’73 & ’72 .. some teachers were students then!! Mr Gross. looked so young in some!) & 1983 Euroka layout. [I’m not sure exactly why I wanted these negatives in the first place… I think it may have been to collect as many memories of my two years at Cairns High as possible – to print off pictures that I may never otherwise possess – nor even see – again.] After that, it was mid-afternoon & I bludged the rest of the day. Jo rang (both confessed we were nervous to contact each other in case were angry with each other!) […I definitely had been unhappy with her in the previous week…] & I asked her to (inconspicuously) find out if  Mark’s written to ‘Niccy’ yet. Went late night with mima, brent & fi for a very short time, then back at Mike & Cynthia’s to mind Dougie & Thomas. I tried to sleep after MOONLIGHTING. A Life in WordsThey came home after Dallas- was dying to get home. On arrival noticed one french door was slightly ajar: shit ourselves. Luckily no one had entered [….so I’m assuming we had left it open by mistake?]

Friday 11/12/87

Well, we went in to do the photos & Ms. Marsland informs me that the whole school will be locked up at noon. So we decided against even starting the developing left everything in the dark room: ready for next year, then went into town. (Saw Mr. Gross. & the year 8 & 9 concert!!) stayed in town shortly – op shopping for mima’s trench coat for Europe. Then Fi got the car & we went to the Esplanade -had pizza & milkshakes. Took the video ONE CRAZY SUMMER out & watched it at Fi’s (she had to work). [That seems a bit odd…watching a video at your friend’s house when she’s not even home?] Then at 3:30 Mum, Julia & I went (back) into town to do xmas shopping. Got all Larcombes prezzies. I have to buy: Mark, Mima, Fi, Jo, Cameron, Mum, Julia & Dad. shit! I have no money! Anyway, home around 6:30, watched TV. Rang Deanne. Rang Fi She rang back “Yeah, we’ll go for a little while.” [go where?] .. I get mostly ready and she rings back – “a change of plan”. . . so I watched the (absolutely) PATHETIC movie “Great American Traffic Jam”. SUCKS severely. [Pretty much spot on there… I watched the YouTube trailer (below) whilst looking for an image and OMG it IS pretty bad. If you’re curious enough, waste three minutes of your life checking it out!]

I hate thinking about Nicole & Mark. I hate Nicole & I hate thinking about MW [Wow, such vitriol. I actually refuse to use the word ‘hate’ at all now, but then I usually don’t feel such intense negativity anymore…]

Saturday 12/12/87

It’s 2:30 (am) I’m in a very “bland” mood today, I went to work in the morning – for about 2-3 hours (did little work but got $10 for it) then at home, I did artwork all arvy (waste!) [How is it a waste if you don’t have anything else pressing? I wish I could make myself create something now; I literally haven’t produced any fine art in decades…] Sharon actually rang me: but she never rang back so we didn’t take. her to the party. Fiona, Sue & Jemima came around 8:30, or later (Fi & mima went back to get Fi’s shirt for me). The party was just slowly moving when we got here (lotsa people: no action) we went to the drivein bottleshop & I was left out. A Life in WordsI could sense a [privacy omission] togetherness practically as soon as they picked me up. [So got casks of ½ & ½ with Colleen, Lisa & [privacy omission] Didn’t [have] any affect at all. I was rather depressed. Jim C. was there with someone, Jeff M of course I didn’t talk to anyway, and … Stewart. God I want him. [The grass is always greener?] It made me depressed overall. We never said a word – but we both knew we were there. […were both aware of one another’s presences…] I got a mass depression (with Jude, Juliet, Colleen, Anna etc..) [Hmm, that’s interesting. Did I mean that my depression deepened being around these people …or were we all depressed together?!] Party broke up round midnight

Sunday 13/12/87

→but we stayed & mucked around. Liam & Aaron (K) are so funny! Woke around 9:00 (yep, that exactly, actually: mum woke me demanding to know whether or not I was going to do any pictures to sell at the Freshwater markets .. I said (grumpily) “NO!”) [Partly being rebellious, but mostly lazy. This is anecdote elicits a little melancholy because it reminds me how much mum believed in me, in my artistic talent. But the problem is, I didn’t – because I compared myself to others (something I still struggle with in some ways now). I even remember her suggesting I try to draw again a few years before she passed, when I was experiencing ‘purposelessness’ during a bout of depression.] So, I bludged the morning till 11:00 when I rang Jo. I got to her place before 12:00 and we watched the TV matinee movies .. Finally went to Palm Cove around 3:00 (2:30) Bludged – watching guys (bad weather Barely anyone there) then we shut up shop. . .went & had a cocktail at Ramada ..really relaxed me. And I went for a drive A Life in Words[even if there was a law relating to alcohol consumption for ‘learner drivers’ (these days there is zero tolerance) we clearly knew nothing of, nor cared about, drink- driving…] (laughed so much) then, stopped at Smithfield on way back . . Stewart didn’t look at me – say anything except goodbye. God, it hurts It’s not fair. Why can’t he fall for me? [Because… that’s life.] Solve all my problems about Mark. [Oh this naivety is just plain embarrassing!] Jo dropped me home round 7:15. Watched TV all night (Mum next door at Fishers again … drunk . . then sick .. then grumpy) as usual […um, the “as usual” makes it sound like she was a regular drinker but she most definitely wasn’t. What I meant was that when she did drink (she didn’t need much at all) she was almost always sick… sick “as usual”… and the grumpy part? Well… isn’t everyone unhappy when they’ve vomitted?!]

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OJ Spews, ‘Approximate Exactitude’ & Relief for Nana (10-16 August)

Monday 10/8/87

Felt a bit down again this morning. I can’t get over the time he spent with her. All night they talked – all night I believe nothing happened. I really do, but it still hurts to think he spent 5 odd hours talking to her.. alone, without getting bored. He would never do that with me. Can you understand? [Oh I understand something completely different…] It makes me feel really down- [like] I bore him or something. Anyway I perked up around lunchtime (incidentally I don’t like Angela’s hair black, at all) See, it is jealousy – I’m jealous that she can keep him interested, that he would talk with her alone all night without getting bored. […and my opinion about her new hair colour would most likely have been a little tainted by this jealousy…] God it hurts so much. It’s pointless me trying to let him know. I’ve tried in the past to talk & explain – its useless – he doesn’t hear me. [Soooo… maybe don’t try ..and save some of your precious energy?] What am I doing here, then? [Exactly.] Did some HW tonight. I resent any talk about that night. [Privacy omission] said “as a joke” something to Nicole about Mark wanting to fuck her. THAT IS REALLY SICK. A Life in Words[What I’m unable to illustrate – due to the limitations of computer text options – is how heavily I had underlined the word ‘really’ (see pic). Not once, but four times. I evidently felt strongly about this…] another late night.

Tuesday 11/8/87

Strangely, we’ve been getting on pretty well over the past few days. Wonder why? [Now the positives induce suspicion.. this isn’t ‘healthy’.] It’s wierd. [and I continue to spell ‘weird’ incorrectly…] A Life in WordsAnyway I woke this morning with a sore throat, from all my coughing & I felt a little sick in a wierd way. I was also v. tired. I went to school anyway, thinking it was over-fatigue, but at school it got worse (on & off) By the end of lunchtime I had the biggest headache so Jason drove me home. I bombed out and slept till about 3:19 [LOL. “about” 3:19? What, was it 3:18 and 54 seconds… or a few milliseconds after 3:19? Approximate exactitude is oxymoronic!] (heard the answering machine), then till about 3:45 when mum & Jules arrived home. I slept the rest of the afternoon (after some chips) my throat is dry & a bit sore from all the coughing & my headache is horrible. I had some fish for tea: not much + pineapple (sickly) Dozed in front of T.V. till mum “dragged” me to bed about 8:00-8:30. [One of the sweeter, long-lost memories of my mum’s expression of love for me: I can hear her in my groggy stupor murmuring my name, gently shaking, then trying to lift me up from whatever position I’d languished in. And when I acquiesced, she’d’ve escorted my aimless body all the way to my bed.] Hope I get better for Friday – baseball & Sat nite-Nigel’s party. Was going to ring Mark, but headache was too bad & I was too weak to bother

Wednesday 12/8/87

Really restless sleep last night – about 11:30 I woke…and vomited (chips, fish & orange juice) [oh, the burn! OJ is possibly the worst thing to regurgitate I think…] A Life in Wordsstayed home today (for sure!) Mark didn’t ring & I couldn’t be bothered to ring him. Fiona, Jason & Anna dropped round after school sometime, for a short while. My headache disappeared this morning – today I had fever (temp.) cough and sinus blockage and was very tired and weak. Is about 9:00 or so now. Auntie Ruth [my mum’s aunt – one of my grandmother’s (many) sisters] arrived around 7:45 tonight. Read my novel all day. Ate 3 mandarins & an orange .. lots of vitamin C. Am taking tomorrow off as well, to make sure I’m better for the weekend. [Because my social life was always first priority…] Did no work & I have an english assignment due on Friday + a biol test on Tuesday. Heavens above! (←ha!) [I’m probably laughing at myself using such ‘dated’ – and semi-religious – terminology here.]

Thursday 13/8/87

A Life in Words
The earliest photo (in my possession) of Nana & me, at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in Brisbane. There’s no date on it but judging by the size of me, it would have to be 1971-72

Slept very restlessly last night; woke nearly every hour, I think. I heard the phone ring around 6:00 this morning. Nana died. [Clearly my great-aunt Ruth arrived just in time for her sister’s passing, but I’m not sure whether she actually got to visit her.] I didn’t cry when mum told me & I don’t think I really will cry over the fact that she’s dead → I’m so glad she’s out of her misery – she was in a lot of it. [And that was it. I think, having personally met with Death in such an intense and unique way just six months earlier myself, I was somewhat prepared emotionally – and spiritually – for this moment, which is evident in my reasoning. I still believe – in fact more now than ever – that ‘wherever’ we ‘go’ when we pass is ‘better’. At this point in time, I was comforted by the ‘knowledge’ that leaving her gnarled body, Nana was now free of the insufferable rheumatoid arthritic pain. And to be brutally honest, since I wasn’t terribly close to her (we ‘clashed’ a lot in my early teens) I wasn’t going to miss her presence on a daily basis as I did Monique’s…] I spent the day reading again.. no fever – am just very tired & have the cough & nasal congestion still, but I feel (and Auntie Ruth agrees) that after tonight’s sleep I’ll be fine. I hope so. I rang Mark tonight .. cos it didn’t look like he was going to ring me. He was at Earlville with Terry ..so rang back. The phone did not stop ringing tonite – Keith & Jemima also rang me. My eyes are stinging – I need sleep to get better. I had 4 (or 5??) mandarins today! (+ dinner – veges) so I should have the vitamins required to boost my energy level tomorrow. [See? Even back then I was acquiring and demonstrating basic nutrition knowledge, hinting at my innate passion for the subject!] Haven’t done english assignment. Too bad. I’ll come late to school: miss double english. Is 9:45 …To sleep!!!

Friday 14/8/87

I’m feeling quite a bit better now. See, this morning I woke – feeling absolutely normal .. until I got up. The cough was persistent and even got worse early tonight, and my tiredness, fatigue & weak feelings plagued me (Making my joints feel heavy, and ache) I went to school anyway – it was a total waste. At little lunch (I went to school during 3rd period) I had to go up to Mark. He said one or two things & that was it. Didn’t even turn to face me, or offer to make room for me to sit down. So I went & sat on my own, practically, he walked past & did nothing. He walked to art ahead of me. Love the concern he shows for me. (He doesn’t – that’s just it, elissa – you should know by now it’s the way he is.) [ …if that’s so, and you aren’t happy, why persist?] so I was really depressed & mum picked me up at big lunch. I dozed at home. Mike & Cynthia bought over dinner – Golden Rooster. Couldn’t eat too much my stomach has shrunk. Is 9:30. I had a lemon & honey drink (YUK) as a last resort. A Life in Words[And I bloody-well love those things now… with ginger and turmeric added as well. Here’s a link to the recipe on my food blog, Food Fervour] Good sleep tonite & hopefully I’ll be fine for the party. Mark really gets to me. [You “let” him. No one is put on this Earth to either elate nor annoy You.] Hey! I’m not coughing!!! (Yet – touch wood!)

Saturday 15/8/87

I woke this morning – coughing. [I obviously didn’t touch any wood?] Alas & alack! But it was easier for me to stand etc. I still get times when my joints (limbs) ache & feel weak, but not as much, and not as bad, as before. We went to the doctor & got amoxyl (penecillan) & cough tablets. [So it obviously wasn’t a flu or viral infection after all?] I’ve been resting a fair bit today, in preparation for the party. (I’m going- there’ll be plenty of opportunities for me to sit down if I need it, mima said) Mark hasn’t rung. I’ve been thinking alot while lying down today… nothing’s the same anymore. We need the biggest, longest talk. There’s a lot of sorting out to do. A lot. [Talking… sorting out… it’s pointless when only one party is ‘interested’…] I’m not exactly “elated” in this relationship. [You don’t say?] A Life in WordsHe doesn’t make me feel like the ‘princess’ I used to be. [*NB: back in the 80’s being a ‘princess’ didn’t have the negative connotations that it can these days.] But that’s not all. [….well, what?] It’s almost 6:00. Am going around 8:30. [There was no mark in my diary to indicate I’d finished the earlier segment of my entry, but from here on in I’m clearly writing at a later point in time (most likely when I got home) describing my night:] It [the party] wasn’t that good. In fact, a waste of time. Only having tea when Jemima, Brent & Fi arrived ..at Nigel’s  it was boring. No one there. saw Mark & Keith once, they came back & went again. I went and lay down in Nigel’s room (feeling ill) Jemima, Brent, Jason & Fi talking to me. Mark told Sue he didn’t think I liked him. He thought I didn’t like him. (How?) went downstairs & Keith was there – took us to the other party everyone was raving about, At Toogood Road. TONNES, & I mean TONNES of people there→

Sunday 16/8/87

I was bored: Feeling ill, I needed to sit down all the time + problem of Mark – I asked him about it, but he seemed reluctant to talk so left him alone all night. I asked him to take me home, but I went with Brett instead (Cameron too). Just dropped cameron off – in Collins Ave. Brett stopped & I was sick (O.J.) At home I bombed out & I didn’t wake till around 10:00-10:30 this morning. Party was the pits. I asked nearly everyone if they knew what was up with Mark, [oh Elissa!] No one did tho’. Watched TV, rested today. Mark & Keith came over around 3:00 in the afternoon. Left soon after. I asked Mark to come around again tonight. A Life in WordsWe went to the park.. bit hard to get started talking, straight away, and the talk was not quite what I expected it to be. It’s really strange. This week, Mark was, apparently, really insecure – thought I was going to end the relationship. I can tell he still feels different, in a way. But it mattered a lot to him. And after that party I realised it. He not only loves me, he’s devoted, too. [You can’t be serious?] He left around 9:00. I watched mini-series show. Is now 10:40. Clean my teeth & off to bed.