Enter Eighty-Eight: Heaviness, Holes ‘n’ All… (1-3 January)

This year will be a particularly difficult transcription for me, for a number of reasons:

Because I’d decided in ’87 that I needed more room to record, I didn’t buy a day-to-a-page diary. Instead, I started out with a little ring-binder folder (see Tuesday 29 Dec, in the previous post] but as it filled up within the first few months, my 1988 diary ended up scattered throughout various notebooks and writing pads. Thankfully I did collate and transcribe them by hand some years later into a thick A4 spiral-bound notebook (pic below).A Life in Words

Because I wasn’t confined to an allotted space, I wrote more. A LOT more (…and gawd, did I dribble on…) This is painful in itself: it’ll demand more time & effort to publish my weekly posts.

Because of the scattered entries, but also mainly because of my particularly frenetic social life, some entries (days) were lost as a result. I’m fairly certain this is the only year that has ‘holes’ in it. This would be one of the main reasons I reverted back to ‘day-to-a-page’ diaries ever after. The limited space also encouraged me to continue my routine: an open book (unlimited space) is quite intimidating and feels like a lot more work… )

And finally, to be totally honest, I just didn’t like 1988. I can’t really explain why: maybe it was simply the Real World, the literal end of childhood. I was now facing Real Life and Responsibility. It wasn’t an easy year for me; the whole world as I knew it fell away beneath my feet. I somehow found it traumatic, but in an entirely different way to the bus accident: it was more personal. There was no extraordinary tragedy/ies to which I could ascribe my feelings, my actions and reactions: this was me drowning (as it felt) in the face of ordinary, everyday life experiences.

Friday 1/1/88

Well at midnight it was hug like crazy. I hugged so many people and got some kisses too. I’m sure I could’ve kissed Philip (N) had I not pulled away in the first place. [There’s that inherent shyness that most people can’t see in me…] I was so hurt when I saw [privacy omission] and Jim … they went all the way. I really wished Mark was there then, but was O.K. Soon after, though, Megan Sharon & I left: got a taxi to the Hill. Wasn’t too bad in there, but all the sleazes were left. […as they always are….] I was in a real mood.. not really happy (very tired) and thinking one hell of  a lot about Mark. God I wish he was here. So much. Well in Smithy’s we sat (after Sharon & Megan “exploding”) [that is, after they each downed the particular cocktail we all favoured for intoxication purposes- aptly named ‘Explosion’. For those who missed the description previously, it was a glassful of straight spirits, set alight and consumed through a straw…] & I was real bored- that Darren S guy came up beforehand and was saying how he’d wanted to see me again after that night (I was so nonchalant) (almost bitchy) […yes, well, clearly not interested…] It was really boring (CB & I were dead tired Sharon annoying me so much ..getting shitty ‘cos I “wasn’t getting into it”. Anyway we left around 3:30, with [privacy omission]. Dropped Sharon home, then to a 24hr [service station …”servo” as we called them] Megan & [privacy omission] got food – CB & I nearly bombed [fell asleep] in the back of the car (talking a lot about [privacy omission] tonight she had Shane McM; bitch) so then [privacy omission] took us to Megan’s where we sat and talked for a while in the car. Finally they left (CB & privacy omission]) and Megan & I prepared for bed. A Life in WordsAfter reading Mark’s letter, it was about 5:30 and daylight was breaking. I woke a few times, but got out of bed at, get this: 1:00pm! Megan & I had food, a swim, food then mum got me (about 4:00) We talked a lot in between. I’m still worried about what to do this year. What will I do?? SHIT!! So I watched TV all afternoon. Mrs H came past (walking the dog, Gemma) and stopped to talk… all about careers & life after school. Megan forgot to ring me tonight ([privacy omission] did this arvy- she knew I was shitty with her about Jim) Just watched the 4hr AUSTRALIA LIVE show (bicentennial thingy) was quite good! Some things were really funny! Now I’m going to watch DR. ZHIVAGO while everyone else bombs A Life in Words(I probly will too) Have so much to do: get Mark a present, send him a telegram, [Ha, seriously? For anyone under the age of thirty, imagine going to an office in town to pay someone to send a text message for you. That’s pretty much what a telegram was…or IS if they even still exist?] decide about my QTAC, get Mark’s family a prezzy, clean my room, etc, etc, etc! …Ugh! Well Goodnight. First goodnight of 1988!!

Saturday 2/1/88

Well, I got to bed around 2:15 last night after Dr. Zhivago (which I really loved) deciding that Rage wasn’t worthwhile watching. I woke, god knows, to answer the phone (Joannah: [privacy omission]) around perhaps 10:30(??) I spent the day, well, most of it, cutting up magazine pictures (watching cricket) and was still doing that when Mike & Cynthia and Dougie, Thomas and couz Kylie & her best friend Nonie, arrived. I felt unsociable because of it, but I tried. Could tell they were bored. Sharon rang in the meantime & invited me to Green Is. tomorrow I said I’d ring her back. So I finished cutting pictures and cleaning out more drawers (and “regions”) of my bedroom. Taylors & Co and Sharon rang – I said yes. A Life in WordsTonight I have a rather large mess on my bedroom floor. It’s 9:30 or so and I don’t care if that’s the way it stays. […which is impressive considering how neat and organised I am – verging on OCD…] I need an early night. Gotta be up early tomorrow. God I’m missing Mark! Only 3 days left! Catching up my ’87 HW diary this arvy too – that took up time & space. [And was it really so important? No!] I have so much to do!!

Sunday 3/1/88

Mum woke me I don’t know when because I was tired and hadn’t finished my dream, but I got up at 7:38 anyway. Had breakfast, waxed armpits (!!) then rushed around trying to figure out what to take (& wear). Had nothing in the fridge I could take to eat, neither did we have any suntan lotion (only 15+ sunblock – so I took that) Got there just a little late (Sharon said she was beginning to worry→ panic) Bought tickets & boarded. Packed boat→ had to share our seat. Once there (long boring trip) found ourselves an area, swam then baked. A trip to the kiosk (and back for a swim & a bake again) revealed… NO spunks (unattached ones, that is) How depressing! So after another trip (to get lunch) then another bake (I felt I was getting burnt) we went, got a loaf of bread and Sharon fed the fish. She borrowed snorkels and goggles from this man and occupied herself . I sat, staring into the water, watching that man’s [the snorkel-and-goggles man’s] lady (wife!) having heaps of trouble in a canoe when I realised this most gorgeous guy (worked at the island) was sitting close by… laughing now & then. He made some comments and I laughed. A Life in WordsGod he was cute! Grant Kenny lookalike! [Grant Kenny (see right) was an Australian Ironman champion in the early 80’s] I said after awhile (Sharon had come up) “where’s the lady in the canoe?” and we laughed again (Uh, yummy!) So Sharon & I hung around, then went for our last quick dip (having gone back, gotten our gear, and placed it on our boat) Got on, then went off again to get food at the kiosk & on again & there he was! We went up to ask one guy some silly question just so we could perve. [Ha, teenaged girls…] Trip home seemed faster. God my legs are so burnt: so’s my stomach & lower back ..mph! Pain! Walked up to the Hostel, I rang mum & Sharon caught a Hayles bus home. [Hayles Pty Ltd was the company that ran the vessels to the islands at that time, and they naturally (a tourism essential) provided courtesy buses so she snagged a free ride home since one of their routes passed close by. Unfortunately, they didn’t ‘service’ my part of town.] Did nothing at home except worry about the amount of things I have to do tomorrow. Presents + telegram for Mark… clean room, go through QTAC forms. Oh dear! Watching cricket now – it’s depressing cause we are losing (again?!) [maybe that’s one of the reasons I’ve ended up with an aversion to watching it now?] and it’s about 10:00. So I might go to bed, now. Beautiful weather today. We were going to go to beach night but decided we were too exhausted. I’M BURN’T!! [I have no idea why I threw an apostrophe in that word. I did know better… sunstroke, maybe?]

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TE Scores, Life Purpose & A Line is Crossed (21-27 December)

Monday 21/12/87

[This post carries over from my previous post: I’d attended a party on the Sunday night, so continued diarising into Monday’s allotted space] [I was] extremely blind drunk. I don’t know why it happened- why I went to Freshwater School with [privacy omission]; I didn’t know what was happening, but the fact was, it did. A Life in WordsI remember crying after it. saying “what am I going to do?” He said “nobody can know about this”. I really don’t remember very much. [But I did recover ‘snippets’ of memory perhaps after the alcohol – or shock? – wore off…] He escorted me home I vaguely remember showering before jumping into bed totally naked. Woke this morning- Julia said “Chris & Cameron are here” & they came in the room. (I lay under the doona) SO EMBARRASSING! [um, yes…] They stayed for awhile: cooked their own brekkys. Watched TV ..Brent rang & the mailman came at the same time. I got 870!! [TE (tertiary entrance) score] Cool! [Privacy omission: here I’d listed some friends’ scores…] Then they left & I did nothing all day – except get extremely hyper [worked up] about the events of last nite. I rang Jo to talk & she helped me a bit. I feel terrible I regret the whole night so much & I feel sick when I think about it. So I tried to think of Jim. [What? Why?] Fi came round & I told her. I hope [privacy omission] doesn’t tell anyone: [well if you had to talk about it – and it IS essential for emotional health – you can’t expect him to remain silent. That’s the pot calling the kettle black.] it’ll be bad enough facing mark about just getting with [privacy omission] to start with let alone him discovering what “else” happened. Fiona sympathized: you just can’t trust your friends even, these days. But, oh shit, she left & I had tea & a bath & [then she came back and collected me and] we went driving for 2 hours: was good – has gotten my mind quite off it now (I WANT JIM C) [This sentiment was a product of my immediate state of mental health: desperate for distraction. KurandaI couldn’t want Mark under the current circumstances… I ‘needed’ something/someone unrelated…] we even went to Kuranda NITE.

[I didn’t realise at the time – nor for very many years after – that what happened to me on that night constituted rape. Back in those days rape was commonly defined by violence, not simply ‘non-consensual’ relations. So, for a long time, I simply considered what happened a breach of trust: a friend taking advantage of me. But I was torn, because I didn’t feel entirely innocent: I had kissed him first, earlier in the night. I had led him on, hadn’t I? Did I invite it? Did I deserve it? Absolutely not …because I didn’t ask for it; I wasn’t given a choice. There was no consensus, let alone consent. I was in a completely defenseless state. We know these days – it’s understood and accepted – that ‘provocative’ behaviour (like clothing) does not – not ever – constitute an excuse to ‘proceed’. It is not an ‘unconditional’ green light. I had only ever kissed the guys I “got with” – I’d never gone any further with anyone, other than my boyfriend. When fragments of my memory returned, I recalled crying silent tears as it happened (not just afterwards, as I’d diarised) and the word “no” scrolling through my mind …but does “No mean No” if it’s a mere thought, not spoken word? Of course it does. I didn’t want it to happen. I didn’t enjoy it. A Life in WordsBut I was too legless to resist, to even realise fully what was happening. The fact that I felt betrayed, that someone I thought was a friend had taken advantage of me in my compromised state, affirms a line was crossed. Whilst I have long since processed the incident, freeing myself from any negative mental or emotional consequences and forgiving the individual concerned, I will never condone his actions nor attitude in this ordeal and fully support the desperate need for change in societal gender issues.]

Tuesday 22/12/87

Well I slept right in today: even past the mailman’s delivery (early today!) Got papa’s Xmas prezzy $20. An electrician was here, putting in a ceiling fan in our living room – Uncle Mike’s present to us for Xmas!! It’s so unreal – cools right down. [I can’t believe we’d lived in that house for three (?) years previously without any fans. These days airconditioning is pretty much standard in FNQ dwellings…] So I bludged all morning – T.V. till went shopping with mum and julia. A Life in WordsBut of course, I didn’t get any personal Xmas shopping done. We got home before 5:00 & I read Dolly all arvy & nite: [privacy omission] rang after dinner. .around 8:00, said he’d come over [privacy omission]– after 10:00. I got nervous sounded like, well, I thought he sounded like he wanted a relationship to arise…[?] thank god it wasn’t that. At first (he came round 10:30) we only talked generally. Actually, that’s all we did, besides slotting in the subject now & then. [Uh, yes, because …it was an extremely uncomfortable, difficult topic for both of us to broach…] He said he doesn’t want me to tell him [my boyfriend] – if he has to know, he wants to be the one to tell him. I don’t know. [Yep, back then I sure didn’t know …didn’t know much at all. I didn’t know that this uncertainty was my Gut trying futilely to override my fearful Mind, to insist that I be the one to tell him. Because, in the adult world, the responsibility lies with the partner – not the ‘buddy’ – due to a thing called Intimacy. In a normal, healthy relationship, there shouldn’t be anyone closer to your partner than you. I had to be the one to open up because I was (or should have been) closer to Mark than his friend. There’s also the fact that whomever doesn’t own up, potentially appears more guilty…] I’m just glad it’s over. [oh Liss, it so isn’t over..] He won’t tell anybody & neither will I. Depending on how Mark & I are when he gets back .. speaking of whom […and here I mentioned his and yet more others’ TE scores…] It’s 1:20!!

Wednesday 23/12/87

I went to town with Jo on the 11:00 bus. Before-hand, Mr B rang and told me Mark was accepted into the B. Business [privacy omission] so that’s good, I guess. I barely got anything done: Joannah did. Saw Jeffrey M & hid. [Wuss] Saw Fi, too! I got Julia’s, Fi’s & Jo’s [christmas presents]. Didn’t get mum’s. Found out Jo’s sister’s best friend bought the shoes I wanted to buy mum. So we caught the 5:20 bus home : and after a long time, got to Ingrid’s (CAD I & II) party just before 8:00. A Life in WordsWas O.K. Not great. Had to borrow $10 from Jude (Mars) to get taxi home. Got ready (pretty drunk) and Fi took us there. No q’s getting in. Just got in the door & stopped there – so many people! Jim included. I thought ‘WOW!’ cause he was talking to Fi & kind of hanging around as a group. But it wore on. Phillip C was there. And Jim told Fiona he likes me (So Peter H told me too) I got to talk to Jim, but he went off with (??) outside Smithy’s & I heard he was talking to Fiona. Great. He likes her. I was kinda down→

Thursday 24/12/87

→for the rest of the night (seemed quite a few people knew I liked Jim) so we left around 2:30, 3:00. Fiona said he liked Belinda, (K). Dean had said to me “he dumped Fiona for Belinda”. Great. That virtually proved it (that it was Fiona above me, anyway, disregarding Belinda) [Ego, Ego, Ego…] Fiona verbally didn’t agree. Anyway, I woke rather late. . . spent the day worrying about what to do for the rest of my life. I have no idea. [This feeling/issue has pervaded my life ever since. It morphed into the larger, more intimidating fear – lack of purpose. A Life  in WordsThis has been the bedrock of my life’s depressions and I am only now – in my mid forties – learning that Life Purpose is a construct: it’s not necessary …and in fact, is not necessarily real.] SHIT Fiona came down. Then mum & I went to town – I got Sharon & Nigel’s prezzy’s; met Jo & took her home – Fiona, me & her all gave each other our prezzies & Nigel came over & gave us his. When everyone left, I got ready. Fi came around 8:30 – Sharon late. After KFC, picked up Sue. The party was full of rev-heads. So went with Wade & Co to Coppelode (I felt so down – out of place) Back to the party to check it out – none other than Jim (& Trevor & Robert M…) & NIGEL! so a convoy of us raced out to Holloways (no party as they said) Jim talking to Fiona. I felt down again. All drove (actually just got Jim’s & Fi’s cars – lost Nigel & Wade) around dropping people home. There ended up Robert Jim & David (J)

Friday 25/12/87 XMAS DAY

A Life in Words
my spunky drop-waisted acid-wash denim skirt

→In jim’s car & Sharon, Fi & I in her car. We decided on swimming at Freshwater Creek. As soon as we got there – Richard O’S & Stewart & Co turned up. Swimming was beautifully cool (cold!) + scary! Got out & all mucked round (laughed so much!) dropped Sharon home around 3:00. And at Holloways, we played Hide’n’seek. Jim & Robert against Fi & I, Stewart & Praybon against Richard & David So I got home 4:45. I had a great time, but I was down inside: Fiona. god she irritated me. I made [tried to make?] her guilty saying things, […which only makes you look like a miserable sook…] but she still stood near him, flirted with him (maybe she didn’t know it, but it hurt me) So I was down. Mum woke me at 8:30. Jodie & Mike gave me a cute denim skirt! [See right. Cute maybe in the 80’s… but downright ugly now.] (At dad’s I got $100 voucher for GOOD TIME) Home again- I nearly fell asleep before Mike & Cynthia came. Ate so much today (Piggy) Fell asleep in afternoon. Rang Fi, Sharon & Jo . . . none of them were home. Uneventful Christmas day really although I’ve made some good (well, pleasing or interesting to me) career decisions And I’ve decided on newspaper or TV (maybe radio?!) primarily Cairns, then Brisbane. Also get a folio of photos – send to a photographic modeling agency!! [Well well well. I didn’t know I’d considered modelling at this point in my life… other than as one of the tools we’d tried (unsuccessfully) to utilise in my compensations claim after the bus accident…]

Saturday 26/12/87

Well what a day! I spent most of the morning in bed – got up round 10:00. Rang Fiona – she said at Sue’s last nite, Geoffrey, Dean & Trevor rang them & asked them to come out. She said to me that they didn’t. A Life in WordsI did ironing after that (previously swimming in the Fishers pool & etc) & Jo came & we went to see her off. She [Fiona?] was there (of course) and told me that the Xmas Eve party was PRIVATE. Back to Jo’s saw Jim & his car was in a deep ditch. Philip N, Trevor & Dean were in a crash. We stayed round Jeffrey’s, talking to them all arvy found out they’d been at Fiona’s beforehand- I feel so betrayed (by her) & sue (cos’ I asked about the Xmas Eve party & Phil & Jim said “No! It’s open!”) WHY? Why did they do it to me? What’ve I ever done to Fiona? […apart from being a whingey bitch?] Let alone Sue? Anyway, Philip seemed to be taking an interest in me (ha, ha!) & he’s going to beach nite! I got home round 6:00→ Sharon & I went to town→got

Sunday 27/12/87

→Bailey’s & milk then went to Playpen. I am still pretty drunk (may tell by the writing) […actually, my handwriting wasn’t nearly as bad as it had been at other times…] Was unreal. Cute Clinton & I talked to Jeffrey M’s friend Heiffer for ages, just before we left. He’s so nice!!!! Now it’s 2:30. Don’t forget Sharon owes me $12.00. [That equated to three or four drinks back then…] Ok? Nite! ∏ Well I woke to the phone, before 10:00. (Angela M – wanting to know if I wanted to go to Magnetic Island on Mon. Tues & Wed) and wasted the whole day. I really wanted to sleep, but couldn’t. A Life in WordsWatched TV (cricket) and finally slept in the afternoon, Sharon ringing at 5:30 to say she didn’t want to go out (sore throat) I didn’t mind (I just hope Philip didn’t go .. cause of me) Fat chance, huh?! Jo & I had a long phone talk during the day (’bout Jim, Fiona & everything else) Otherwise – it was sleep & TV. Boring!! So hot! (But rained all day) Just realized there’s just over one week till Mark gets back … And I haven’t changed one bit like I said I would→ I’m fatter than I was when he left, my wonderful tan has faded (& the rain won’t help me get it back) oh dear! Cannot wait till New Years!! What’ll I do tomorrow? I think I should clean out my bedroom it’s 10:10

 

Pedi-Cabs, Parties & Regurgitated Vodka Orange (14-20 December)

Monday 14/12/87

Woke rather early- wished I could’ve gotten more sleep (but what’s new?) Hanging out for the postman .. but he’s getting later & later now cause of xmas mail ‘rush’. Plus our. phone wasn’t working (all day, it turned out.→ lines were cut) so I couldn’t ring Fiona, so I bludged all day till she came to visit .. to talk about dinner. She left & I kept reading magazines ..then she came back again & jules & I went with her to get videos (etc) then home again. Watched TV till Chris & Cameron visited. I went for a drive; so did they! And Sharon was there when we returned. She told me all about herself (as usual) [um Liss, I don’t think you can point fingers…] Then I had to hurry to get ready. Jay & Anna & Jenny picked me up. At the LIN NAM restaurant, we waited ages … but when everyone who was coming, was there (Fi, Brent Jay, me, Sue, Anna, Jenny & mima) we ate yummy chinese foodA Life in Words – then ice cream balls (fried) for dessert. [Gawd I love those things! Mum actually made them a few times at home. Mmmm, nom-nom-nom!] At Fi’s again . . watched FROG DREAMING and then THIEF OF HEARTS. I was dead after that.

Tuesday 15/12/87

Had a rather (short) restless sleep. Mima had to leave earlier .. Fi dropped me home before going grocery shopping.. then picked me up after. (no letter from him again) we went to mima’s & watched TV mostly all day… taping music for their trip. Went to Smithfield at one stage & had a ½hr wait (browsing in shops) for them to fix the heels on Mrs B’s shoes. TV (& a pig-out) again, then talk (about old times) and finally to indoor soccer. Freak rainstorm during it – came & went instantly! Got home before 7:00 – watched TV all night – Now’s about 9:45. Need good sleep tonite_hopefully going out tomorrow night (haven’t been out for yonks!) – (over a week!) [My my, a whole week? That’s shocking. You’re hard pressed to get me to leave the house these days. In fact, I hate getting to bed later than 10pm] thinking about Mark today & my feelings were different – I didn’t feel so sick or angry I had a strange feeling of nonchalance – like no matter he was there: he loves me. Wierd!! [Yes, weird: badly worded. I think basic gist is that I was finally ‘leting go’ of an issue that had been plaguing me…] I can’t wait to have that talk with him – it’s imperative!! NITE!!

Wednesday 16/12/87

A Life in Words
Pedi-cabs were everywhere in Cairns in the late 80’s but oddly enough, despite the tropical heat, you’d rarely see them with the hoods up, like this.

Woke rather early again .. remember waiting for Fiona (& the bloody mailman!) did art – the crash scrapbook (only a little) she came, and went, Adam rode down here, she came again with Nyrie & we all went [to see our friend and her family off on their European holiday]. There were so many people .. and it was so emotional! (You’d think they were leaving for life) then we went into town. Saw Tania & she gave us a pedi-cab ride to Dad’s [Ah, ye olde pedi-cabs. They were THE thing at that time.] (where I got a loan of $10 & a big nag lecture about my career.) [Yep. Dad was certainly the disciplinarian. No one could ever accuse him of failing to instill in us work ethic and the value of a dollar…] Fiona got lots of her shopping done (me, included) and we got home around 4:30-5:00. Fi rang & said she wasn’t going out; ditto Jo. So I couldn’t get onto Jude so – Sharon ..she came late & in town we had trouble: NPBS [Northern Permanent Building Society – I’m fairly sure I had a bank account with them too…] ate her cashcard and at ANZ she had only $2. Went around esplanade. ..finally loaned $20. [To think you only needed $20 for a night out on the town… that is surely unheard of now?] Got in up there [the House on the Hill] no sweat. But there was barely anyone there. Juliet Jude, Anna, Danae Juliet & Sharon made up. [Made up? Erm, obviously there’d been some issue/s between these girls previously… that I can’t recall…] Nigel was back – he won Bruce SpringsteenA Life in Words

Thursday 17/12/87

→album & gave it to me [damn, I’d always believed I’d won it myself …in one of those poncy dancing comps the club DJs sometimes randomly held] – so there’s something for Julia (Xmas prezzy) [ah yes, ever the pragmatist: with very limited funds for christmas shopping, I had to be resourceful. Mind you, if I’d really wanted the album I wouldn’t’ve re-gifted it, I’m sure…] I was smoking too got rather drunk – people buying drinks for me. Later I drank so much I had one whole cigarette & was spinning badly then I vomitted (inside – yes! EMBARRASSING But I think no one saw me x-ept who I was with – Anna & a guy she knew) [Oh yes, I remember this quite clearly – considering how intoxicated I obviously was. I’d been drinking vodka & orange, and was standing a a ‘dry bar’ (a table you stand at) with Anna & her friend when the urge came over me and I basically ‘re-filled’ the glass from which I’d been drinking. Needless to say, we all promptly vacated the table (the other two obviously faster than I) and full glass, and later contemplated the likelihood of some grubby cheapskate happening upon said receptacle, only to receive a nasty surprise…] FUCK! Then I took it easy [too little too late?] – sobered up. . danced with new St M. [St Monica’s] Friends & ‘David‘ & Richard (O’S) left around 4:30- Anna paid taxi- Jay didn’t come back to pick us up. Anna was so mad. Anyway bombed it & woke around 9:45 Got up_feeling DEAD & rang Jo. But I rang her back to say I felt too sick to go. I honestly felt real bad. A Life in Words[Finally a hangover worth mentioning…] Slept all day, nearly .. till 1:45 & watched TV for the rest. Boring!! I really badly want to go op-shopping (Xmas shopping – get it out o’ the way). I feel so mixed up about Mark too. I want him to love me real lots – with a strong passion [it is what it is, Elissa] .. but I can’t help feeling he likes (I can’t say it Loves) Nicole. It makes me sick to think he could & probably does. [Ego’s reaction] Oh what’m I to do?? [Well, nothing right now, obviously; the guy is thousands of kilometres away from you. What you need to do is quieten the incessant, mostly ridiculous, stories your Mind is pushing at you so that you can allow your gut instinct to surface…]

Friday 18/12/87

I spent the day at home (mostly). see I’d wanted to go op-shopping or Xmas shopping in town, but also go to the beach, however Fiona said she was working when I rang her. So I spent the day (well, for starters, I’d ‘slept’ a lot of it ‘in’) doing scrapbook, but mostly watching TV. Sharon rang & about 3:30 mum dropped me in town (talked to Giles) she bought stuff & we walked round saw Gordon for a while, then we met mum & julia. Missed the pedi-cab ‘grand prix [I have no idea what this was for, or in conjunction with, nor why my Dad was involved…] (saw the end tho’. Yeah dad won ..big thing about it .. no time to talk to us & By the way, he wouldn’t let me have the weekend for 2 at the Hilton. [Why should he give his prize to you Liss?] A Life in WordsI bought, only his prezzy – $6.25 3 glass storage jars. home by 9:30 ..Sharon & I got a taxi around 10:30-11:00. There were more people than Wed, (more young ‘uns) but not enough to open upstairs, Mark R. was there & I tried to keep looking at him. [Why?] We did basically nothing but talking mucking round with Dean, till Jeffry M & ‘Heiffer’ asked us to dance

Saturday 19/12/87

→(I don’t remember his real name) Jeffry was dancing with Sharon. “OK…” I thought, but when we sat down, they Sharon & Heiffer seemed to disappear & we talked & eventually got together. He left 2:30, kept saying about the party ..if I wasn’t going to ring him; If I was I could ring him anyway [privacy omission – I had inserted his phone number here and was stoked I actually memorised it→] I remembered WOW! Of all people – I got Jeffry M!!! (& [privacy omission] didn’t even!) So we danced & Megan C said she’d take us home ..she left at 5:00. Great.. I’m too old to stay out that early late anymore! [Oh that, that is hilarious…] So I got sleep (mum was awake!!) till Jo rang 9:20 & I had to answer it. Wasted morning: Fi came over & we went to Smithfield, then beaches, but too windy, so after a slip’n’slide in Sharon’s backyard, we sunbaked there. A Life in WordsGot home around 4:00 -slept till 6:00 or so. Sharon & I got there around 8:30. Jeoffry [I clearly struggle with deciding how to spell some peoples’ names…] was there .. so were millions of other people: it was a massive party! Jimmy was there God he’s gorgeous. Apparently he broke up with his girlfriend .. sharon told me he wanted to talk to me! (Well, the party: was good. Not a RAGE! just good. Mark R was there Jeffry talked to me … and later, in the house tried to .. well, he did want a relationship ..[privacy omission] said so→

Sunday 20/12/87

→so then I decided to say it : and I felt so bad .. I still do, but it’s the truth. I don’t want to screw anyone up. [That’s me: too nice, too honest …too gullible?] SO he won’t talk to me ever again, probly hate me (& his friends will too) But I don’t care: Jim!!) [WTF?!] so. There were lots of fights, the party ended round 2:00 I think .. I found out staying over wasn’t a simple matter of anywhere you want, so I walked with [privacy omission] & CB to Hoare St, we caught a cab to [privacy omission]‘s ..ate what we could find, and fell asleep in front of RAGE (TV) woke early .. CB & I talked .. went & got clothes from Lisa’s place up the road .. then Tasha S came down & [privacy omission], Tash & I went to the shop for brekky stuffs. Mum picked me up round 11:00 & I slept till about 2:00 at home. Mulleys place I bitched about Nicole, to Moo- we watched RUTHLESS PEOPLE on video, then went to LeB’s (gorgeous) new house. At home -rang Fi .. I would’ve walked with her [to (yet another) party] but she was going to be too late so I went by 8:10. A Life in WordsDrank Fosters all nite. [Ew, really?! The Aussie beer with the highest international profile that isn’t actually consumed (and is actually detested) by a vast majority of Australians… Well, it was popular back in the 80s’…] I got so drunk. I mean it was BAD – the whole night I regret completely. See, I got very drunk .. finding it hard to walk, even (usually I have no trouble with mobility when I’m drunk – look sober) [well, so you think…] so I was→ [uh-oh…. in true soap opera style, you’re going to have to wait til next week to find out how this exciting tale unfolds…]

My Learner’s License, Senior Certificate & Mum’s Broken Toe (30 November-6 December)

Monday 30/11/87

I woke to a few phonecalls, ignored them and kept sleeping. Around 11:00 – jemima saw me open my eyes.. I felt terrible…they’d all been up for ages. [This is pretty much ‘unheard of’ for me.. I was usually unable to sleep in – and was often the first one awake – at sleepovers…] and Fi was there (had been for an hour!) so we went (via my place to get money & change of clothes & take my pill) & got 2 videos & lotsa food [that is, junk… stuff I wouldn’t class as ‘food’ these days]. A Life in WordsFinally at mima’s, we watched LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS (newer one) […I’m assuming by “newer one” I meant the 1986 production as opposed to the original 1960’s version] – Funny!! Then Playing Beattie Bow through which Joannah arrived (Peter & Edward M already there) After that (not-so-good) video – talked about the party … Fi dropped me home Mum wasn’t extremely happy. She’s getting really ‘uppity’ about the amount of time I spend at home (“very little”) but I’m YOUNG and I’ve just finished SCHOOL! I need to get out and make friends & have fun!! [Ha! Dad would abruptly counter this attitude with “No, you need to get a job and start paying your way” (justified!) but mum wasn’t quite as direct as he, and I’m certain that for her it was more personal: apart from possibly feeling like she was being taken for granted (in her care-giver role) she would also have been simply missing me. I’ve always been more social than my mother & sister (this I inherit from my dad) so our motivation and understanding of each other in this respect was ‘misaligned’. Even in my later years, when I’d moved to the Gold Coast, she (& my sister) whinged about the amount of time I didn’t spend ‘at home’ when I came to visit them, but I understand that it’s fundamentally derivative of their love for me. I can certainly see however the selfishness and immaturity in my teenaged attitude now…] Anyway I nearly went to sleep around 6:00, but got up & had a shower – I knew I had to ring Crabbie. Jo & mima weren’t home. Couldn’t tell [him] much. Got Jo & mima later – they’ve no definite plans yet either so all plan-making will be done 2morrow (last minute – as usual) I [← I have no idea what this marking actually was – whether it was a capital ‘I’ or the number ‘1’ – nor, of course, why it was there: had I meant to begin another sentence or was I simply going to record the time?]

Tuesday 1/12/87

Disappointment! The party was cancelled and I only found out as I was ready to leave. Today I stayed home – sunbaked (& got a bit burnt) in the morning, as well as writing to mark (but what’s the point?)A Life in Words [The point most likely being no address to send it to? I’m not sure why else I’d consider it pointless…] and spent the afternoon unpicking [the stitching of] an old dress of mums. (I have heaps of old clothes & material to make clothes – no time & patience, though) [surprise, surprise] Jo rang a number of times during the day (Wayne did [only once] too, to say he wasn’t coming) so I started to get ready around 5:15 (and of course couldn’t find anything I wanted to wear) so finally ready at 6:50.. rang Fi to tell her I’m coming & sorry I’m late, but she still wasn’t home, so I rang mima “Oh, sorry, didn’t anyone tell you it’s been cancelled?” I must’ve shown my disappointment more than I thought cos when Fi rang, she noticed. So I stayed home – watched TV, during big thunder-/rain storms. Now is about 9:30. Early nite for once???!

Wednesday 2/12/87

10:34 – yet another night at home. But a busy day! This morning I woke around 8:00 (woke a fair bit last nite – felt still very tired & weak this morning) and Jemima rang around 9:30. We finally left for town around 11:00 (Deanne rang me beforehand, too!) I tried to ring Jo, but phone was engaged. So, met Seigi & Colleen & Danaë and Jude in town . . told us the party (ended up at Mulgrave Rd) was excellent (Great) [←Can you feel the disappointment oozing from this solitary sarcastic comment?] so I got a pair of $47 black on white (stripes) bikinis (finally!) then we all went to the beach – not many people at all! Dropped Jude & Danaë off (fi dropped off Colleen) then went around town trying to find the (indoor) soccer team etc… watched indoor soccer (Fi told me a deep secret and I feel priveleged – finally find out something about her (her love for…..)) [I have no absolutely NO recollection of the identity represented by these dots now] at home 7:30 (BIG STORMS tonite!) (No letter from Mark yet) So, a nite at home yet again. A Life in WordsMum told me at 9:30 that Jo rang so I couldn’t ring her back.. […because one of our house rules was no phone calls after 8pm …a guideline I still follow now. In fact, these days I rarely make, and sometimes choose not to answer, phone calls at all after dusk!]  GREAT!!!

Thursday 3/12/87

Well, less than a month left of this horrible revolting worst-year-of-my-life year. [This is so interesting, because unbeknownst to me, the coming year (1988) was to prove quite difficult for me as well (nothing as traumatic as the bus accident though of course) and for many, many years to follow, I despised it more than 1987. In fact, pretty much up until I began this blog, I actually considered 1987 (coupled with ’86) the best year(s) of my life. Much of this I think related to my burgeoning social and love lives, as well as the freedom of responsibility of childhood/school-life entwined with the imminent privileges of adulthood. Thankfully this very blogging process has released me from that limiting belief: whilst I’m re-living my past in detail, I’m also an observer and this has perfectly unlocked whatever deep, powerful connection I had to these times in my life (for which I am still grateful nonetheless, for the lessons they have individually and collectively presented to me). It’s truly liberating.] Thank God! But what’ll I do now? For the rest of my life? It’s a worry. [See my line of thought? Responsibility = Worry. Much of the time these are directly proportional to one another…] I spent the (nearly the) whole day at home …sewing!! (I’m making things out of mum’s old clothes – chop, chop!) Wrote a bit more to Mark, and in the mail, got a note to pick up a parcel at Freshwater P.O. .. it was my (very battered and carelessly handled) [art] folio So, I didn’t get an interview, nor a note ..so Kelvin Grove .. UP YOURS!! A Life in WordsI’ll just have to do something totally different to Uni career [one rejection and “it’s all over”…] – other apprenticeships like hairdressing, nursing & journalist cadetship on a magazine, till Jo, Jude & I open our boutique. [The flights of fancy we kiddies have/had! I’m fairly sure nursing required formal study even back then, and as for the magazine cadetship… ha! I think that Hollywood & the media in general might have ‘duped’ me there. As for the boutique with my friends… well, I’d forgotten all about that and in fact, didn’t realise I was still considering a fashion career at this stage…] Anyway Fi came down & took me and I GOT MY LEARNERS (FINALLY!) and my hair show ticket. [Another hair show? There was one just last week…] Home again, but she took me late nite shopping. No cuties [read: no ‘talent’ to perve on] was fun with CB, Glyn, Anna, Colleen LAUGH! Saw John C – not so stunningly gorgeous as he used to be – but I still wouldn’t mind him falling for me (laugh in a million) [self deprecating humour] Went to KFC after (Jeff, Cam, Glyn, CB, Anna, Fi Col & me) [Jesus, again? You might as well have lived there…]

Friday 4/12/87

Today, I stayed home (yet again!) Wasn’t too occupied: I mean, in the morning I went to school briefly to pick up my report (senior certificate) I got VH for eng! WOW! Sounds for maths & chem and highs for biol & arts.. [To this day, it amazes me that English was my best subject, considering the very reason I moved to Cairns High in the first place was for the CAD Art ‘School of Excellence’ course. I remember feeling disappointed (and even embarrassed) with myself for not attaining the same (top) achievement level in my art subjects. But Liss, it’s not like you put a great deal of time & effort into your schoolwork in order to realise those preferred results, yes? There’s no room for your perfectionism now; too little, too late!] Ms Forbes said I’ll get in 800’s, could even possibly get 880!!! wow, cool! [Cool, but not cool enough for the institutions and courses that were my first preferences…] Rang Kelvin Grove while I was there – about my interview – they said “no offer”. (REJECTION! Great) So at home, I made a skirt out of one of mum’s old daggy skirts.. and I wore it out tonight .. with Fi’s white shirt .. got asked for I.D. showed my ‘melted’ false I.D. and was allowed! [That scenario these days? Not. A. Chance!] (But privacy omission], Colleen Anna & Fi got in no q’s) Anyway, overall was a pretty cool nite! Slow to start with.. but Geoffry M, Jim C and a few others provided drool materialA Life in Words . . got fairly drunk (won bottle of bubbly with Marney & Joyce & Colleen & [privacy omission]) Saw lotsa older people – Rodney B etc (all college, uni people: Tanya!) Left around 2:00 or so . .. I got home 2:30 to sleep. Jo rang tonite. She told me she talked to [privacy omission]: she’s screwed Steven & Mark . that’s all. But she said Mark saw a bit of [her] before he left. -ie. sunday nite. She said they just talked, I don’t know if so… but I’m angry cos he lied to me…. (WHAT’S NEW??)→ can only be expected of him – he’ll never change

Saturday 5/12/87

WORKED! Dad let me drive to the Red Beret and I did quite well! Nearly knocked over a bicyclist and missed the gates to the Red Beret and almost took out a tree. Apart from that, I was good! […well, at least I’m remaining positive…] Did barely any work at work: talked to Jenny mostly about Julia & mainly my career …she’s pushing me to be a nurse. [Dad on the other hand wanted me to join the Armed Forces: it would have been the ideal situation; discipline, commitment and (the big bonus for him) paid education.] But I still got $10 for the day…and a big healthy yummy lunch. Rush to get ready – were heaps of people. I felt ‘out of it’ to start with – wearing not black & white, but khaki & white. [So it was evidently a Black & White themed hair show…] Anyway, my view position was good, but bad at the same time – I was seated, behind Jim C but much some of my vision obscured. It was pretty good: altogether, as a show, unco-ordinated but some individual salon productions were excellent (All amateurish) after, tried to find the party- traipsed all over town looking. Playpen Hill & party & nest. I was so pissed off with [privacy omission]. Stewart was there outside Nest one stage & [she] was being slimy and she knew I was there (she thought I was in a bad mood with her, so I’m sure she did it on purpose. [No Liss, you can’t ever be sure…] Even if not, she knows the way I feel about him) Eventually (saw Phil C. Jim C. at show) Sue, Fi & I grabbed food from a 24hr→

Sunday 6/12/87

→shop & (I rang mum) we stayed at Fi’s. A Life in WordsI got a bit emotional (worried) about Mark, but we got to sleep around 3:00 I’d say. ..Woken around 9:00-9:30 by Banks’s cat (all over us) After brekky etc, went (picked up my gear) to Palm Cove; about 11:30. Got there & engine was overheating (radiator we filled last nite at Alison’s) It was empty again. Idsteins helped us out – we went to Bitter Creek [ummm, I have NO memory of knowledge of this place in the Cairns region, at all. Can anyone fill me in?] & they fixed pipe connection (radiator thermostat corroder) […er, whatever that is…] for us. At beach (after lunch (saw tanya!)) baked (and now I’m mostly brown – bit red) saw Jo & on our way home noticed overheating again. Back to Bitter Creek. they said a whole lot of things were going wrong.. water in oil feul filter melted (hole) but mainly water reservoir not full enough. We attempted getting back to Cairns – having to stop every 100m or so to let it cool down (useless) about Kewarra, a guy helped us ..said H2O reservoir needed to be EMPTY so radiator H2O vapour could go there.. [he] was right – perfect all the way to D’s newsagency. car overheatingLeft the car there – Sue went with her parents home. Fi & I drove round – got a pizza (for tea) & had a talk… got home 6:40 .. watched TV listened to Take 40 is now 11:30 & I’m buggared. *Mum has suspected broken (little) toe: cos I rang 2:00 in the morning to tell her where I was; she kicked it hard. MY FAULT. [This exact incident occurred years later as well. Mum had established a Trust system with me when my social life began to ‘intensify’ (read: basically when I began attending nightclubs) that allowed me a generous amount of freedom in exchange for honesty and ‘accountability’. In other words, she just wanted to know my plans, my whereabouts and if they changed to inform her as soon as possible “no matter what time of the night …or day”. So, whilst I felt terrible both times she ‘ran’ for the phone in the middle of the night kicking and breaking toes on the way, I consoled myself in the knowledge that I was doing as she asked, that I had done ‘the Right Thing’…]

Romeo Rejections, Dogs In Space & a Police Raid (23-29 November)

Monday 23/11/87

Woken at 8:00, I got to Mark’s and kept on writing the letter, even thru’ our trip (with Cameron) into town & KMart. [I explained what this letter was all about in the previous post but to recap I was trying to pen something (‘massive’ …like a novel) for him to read on his overseas family holiday.] Back at his place, I finished it – 11 pages (not bad considering the time I had)). At the airport, we waited, had a drink. Was kinda sad .. only 3 or 4 kisses (1 long-ish) before he left. Would’ve loved to go with them. [Was it even an option? I mean, apart from being unable to afford it, I don’t even remember being invited…] EUROPE! Imagine it?!!? Wow, I’m so tired. It’s after 12:30. I need sleep badly. Not really missing Mark – had fun without him tonite. [So you’re not as dependent as you thought you were?] A Life in WordsJo rang (well I rang her) at home & we went into town & walked around. I saw Stewart – I know he would’ve seen us- I avoided him …(god, I wish I hadn’t lost that friendship. I do like him more also, I know) Jo came to my place. Reddy [a deliberate misspelling] & went to hair show practise. At awards, Jeffry M actually talked to me, but was trying to con on to CB obviously. Found out thru mima – [privacy omission]‘s got a reputation at Saints and also a rumour that Mark got back with me before he went away so I’d remain faithful to him. Well, if I got a chance at the BIG TIME Stewart or PHILLIP) too bad, Marky!! [Beyond the obvious fickleness and superficiality, this comment bespeaks of indignation (if the rumour was true, how dare he?) and further, a desire for ‘justice’ – or retribution (if the rumour was true and if the opportunity arose, “….you’re history”…] After, went to Backpackers – but mainly SCANDALS. Chris H dropped me home.

Tuesday 24/11/87

Busy day! Rang Fi around 10:15 – (got up at 9:20, or so – long sleep I needed) She picked me up around 10:45, 11:00. We (Mima & Fi & I) went into town.. did nothing spectacular: put film in to be processed . . .  looked around Hilton shops. Went to Earlville for a little while, then (dropping off to get my togs) went to Crystal’s. Sunbaked (so hot!!) only a little while – the shade from trees came quickly. Leaving, NSW guys “dragged” us on Intake Road (oh! Fi let me drive to Crystals [good god, that was dangerous Fi!] -part the way -was good, but gear changes at beginning were – um – funny) […in other words, not great…] Saw David at Redlynch shop, Went to Esplanade Rang mum told her what I was doing (on answering machine). Went to indoor soccer. Cameron V.B’s nice (but Aaron K’s body – YUM!) Saw Cameron, then home by 7:30. Mum & Julia not -house unlocked, no note; I worried [about them] but they came saying Mr B died this morning (cancer) & they went to briefly see Mrs F .. stayed for tea (coffee). I Watched TV tonite. It’s 10:00- I need sleep for tomorrow night BIG nite out! (Hope Phillip’s there. Or Stuart or Cameron’ll (V.B.) do!) Gam On!! [Wow, I thought I’d long outgrown that word! “Gammon” was a term we inherited from Aboriginal & Islander kids at primary school and had a myriad of different meanings A Life in Words(as the Macquarie Dictionary – and Urban dictionary, see pic – confirms) but pretty much all connoting untruth or unreality… In this particular instance I’d’ve meant “As if!”] Mm! Sleep! Gonna get brown & skinny & blonde, I am!! everyone practically says “so are you missing Mark?” I hate to say yes, but feel like a bitch saying NO. [The agony of independance and pride versus compassion and potential judgement by others…]

A Life in Words
The advent of digital cameras (still a decade away at this point in time) erased the pain of ‘memories lost’ due to the sometimes problematic photography equipment on hand the 80’s.

Wednesday 25/11/87

SO HOT! Woke around 8:00…rang Jemima around 9:30 – said Fiona was spending the day with Jason & she wanted to stay home, so I prepared to spend a day at home alone, myself. I sunbaked briefly (& it went a bit red tonite, too!) Mum came home – I got dressed, we dropped Julia at school & I picked up photos- my 36 exp. [exposure] film was … totally BLANK. I was so mad with myself – all those great shots of Monday night, down the drain. [You youngsters will never know this pain; one of the best technological developments ever was the digital camera. It is however arguable whether that function added to mobile phones has been all positive…] SHIT. But the “last day of school” photos are excellent! […I must have put two separate cannisters of film in for processing?] I went to Sahara – tried on my bikinis and had 2nd thoughts- I look disgusting in 2 piece [We are our own worst critics, and I was. Yes okay, I still can be…] (I am so hot) Glyn, Chris & Cameron visited me at home: I was putting the photos in albums. Lazed afternoon away: phone calls to & from people Got ready; mima took me to Jude’s & her dad took us to town. We caught a taxi to the Hill & [privacy omission] only got asked for I.D. Inside there were quite a few but not too many people we knew. We weren’t really raging .. I had an explosion with Jude – didn’t do anything .. then I saw him (with Jemila talking) – (Jeff M & Phil N were there too) PHILLIP C! I went up & talked a little .. then we went & sat near his friends. I talked to Deanne & he went away→

Thursday 26/11/87

→ said ‘Bye’ and kind of held up his hand in a wave. Great! “He doesn’t like me” ..so I went and found Jude & Joannah & I complained. [It’s just wrong that you can’t have everything you want in Life, isn’t it?] But somehow, I found him again. (dancing!) and I stuck with him for the rest of the night! Talking (sitting) The best I got was a brief hold of his hand before a dance.. I tried but he wasn’t responding [oh this is painful!] (doesn’t he like me or doesn’t he know how to act?) [I’ve since learnt it’s pretty much always the former: it becomes pretty easy to discern whether or not someone is really “into you”…] Well outside (he was walking home to a friend’s place) he gave me one little kiss on the lips and said “just get in the car!” [And there it is…] So I did. A Life in WordsThis morning I woke at 10:30.. did nothing till I rang Jo. She came round & picked me up. At her place (I met Sara) we watched “DOGS IN SPACE” (a really poor recording) then went to her dad’s office – to make lots of phonecalls about Kelvin Grove interviews (& her folio) we waited till about 5:30 before Sara came then to Earlville : [privacy omission]! Then out to pick up Mrs C. [privacy omission] had the biggest row in the car .. at Smithfield, Saw Stewart. I didn’t speak .. we were late back to the car ..another fight! At Jo’s place- another fight! [Privacy omission] made dinner, but dropped the dish as she was carrying it out to the table – really upset her. Played cards after a (make-shift) dinner: then fell asleep on the

Friday 27/11/87

→horrible, hard loungeroom floor. Woke so much during the night. Jemima rang & invited Jo (she didn’t know I was there) to her place for a swim (with Cameron, Chris, Glyn, Brent & Fi) then lots of phone calls – one from Stewart. I only talked for 2 mins. I think.. “if I see you out, I see you out”. “Definitely” he said. So I wasted much of the morning playing patience [aka the card game Solitaire. My mum had always called it Patience…] while Jo was in the phone. then Fi came & picked me up after 11:00-11:30 sometime. Watched end of GOLDEN CHILD then Chris, Cam, Glyn, Fi, Mim & I went to Crystals. was really nice – I got burnt – but not so bad it’ll peel… Chris had to leave early for a driving lesson: Cam, mima & I waited for Fi & Glyn’s return (the bitches went to KFC) [!! LOL] at Mima’s Glyn had to leave – but we sat in the pool “playing games”. Then they dropped me home first. I rang Sharon, then Jo. Fi rang said she’d find us in town. Sharon got to my place (I was freaking out about what to wear.) [That used to happen regularly] In town – boring – we went to watch the HILTON OPENING FIREWORKS. Lotsa tonnesa people there!A Life in Words Met Cam & Chris .. we all went to KFC for tea. Then picked up Glyn (dropping off Cameron) At HOTH, [security] were really strict [about identification] (let us sign the book) […this basically being a registry of club patrons’ (who failed to produce satisfactory identification) personal details – Statutory Declarations – which the venue could use to absolve itself of responsibility in the event of a subsequent legal matter.] got a stamp. Rumours that→

Saturday 28/11/87

←there was gonna be a raid . . . boring to start with (I saw that Darren S guy) [a drunken pash candidate from a few weeks back] Finally “upstairs” opened: still no people. Around 12:00, Sharon & I sat with these older guys she knew, and there came the Police. [Two or three uniformed, if I recall correctly] I was a little nervous, but it was fine. Sharon nicked off after that & I got pissed off [with her]. Stewart was there. I stood with him and Smithfield mob – Shane L, Matthew, Axel & his friend Phil, when the Pigs came back in – Sharon virtually “ran” away. I stayed put & they didn’t give me a second glance. Eventually I talked to Stewart (after dancing with Shane) and he couldn’t give a reply. . told him all I felt (in brief – I wasn’t even the slightest bit drunk) [oh dear, really?] and he said he could still fall in love with me, […Liss, if it hasn’t happened by now…] but basically (I made him tell me before he left) [hey, everyone needs closure right?] he chose not to. Just be good friends, really good friends. [Oh E, it’s been obvious for SO long…] So Sharon (got with Steve from the Intern. Hostel.(!!)) & I got a lift home. I woke around 10:00 to a phone call from her. my throat so sore. Jo rang & I had a penecillan. A Life in Words[Yeah, no worries …just randomly pop an antibiotic pill whenever you feel like it. I don’t remember Mum having such a diverse collection of pharma at home.] Bludged the rest of the day: Mike came over in the afternoon – left & came back for dinner. Mima & everyone picked me up just after 8:00. Went (picked up Peter & Colleen) to Esplanade (saw Sharon very briefly & were bible-bashed!!) Party was MASSIVE .. so many people! We went & got VODKA Colleen & I  & I had orange .. Having an excellent time (I’d rung Phillip twice before – he was at the party) & I found out Phillip likes Kate H [I’d gotten the surname wrong…]

Sunday 29/11/87

→the guy (whose place he stayed at Wed. nite) sister. (Gr 10, or so). We talked, anyway (shortly) The party ended at 10:50. cause someone vomitted upstairs. So angry! It was such an excellent party.. so we went in search of irene St one ..Jason P told me Mark R likes me. Ha! [Ironic because I’d had a crush on him a few years back…] I was pretty drunk. Funny- I said “he doesn’t remember me” ..he said “well he dragged me round trying to point you out….” la-de-da! So that party was rather dead, too.. then I fell asleep in Fi’s car on the way home (stopped at 24Hr Serv. Stn). Woke late, round 10:00 this morning & bludged the day, till just after 2:00 (after phone calls to Jo…) I waxed my armpits, then mum drove me to Palm Cove.. Jo shut the shop for 5 mins – we got an ice-cream & went to see the surf-carnival, [knowing there’d be some hot bods there… and some of particular interest…] but discovered on the way it was over (heard the loudspeaker presentations) at shop again – waited outside ..saw Fi, mima, Sue, brent & talked ages to Crabbie. Phillip apparently went past in the McM’s car. At home, rushed ate tea & mima & fi & I went to Drive In. A Life in WordsPolice Academy IV made me sick.. the idea’s wearing very thin. The LOST BOYS was excellent (unbeknown to us, beforehand, it was a horror movie about vampires) […well I wouldn’t really class it as a horror film now…] Scared us shitless! But was excellent (my door slammed shut for no reason & we packed it!) [“Packing it” refers to fright. It seems to be a lesser known slang phrase we used since I can’t find the exact context for it, even in the Urban Dictionary. I guess it may correlate to pooping (packing) your pants with fear..?] I stayed mima’s (Fi, her & me talked about old times for ages, then Fi took Brent home.)

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.

Cheerleading at the Foot’s Cup & ‘The Best Time of My Life’ (27 July-2 August)

Monday 27/7/87

Good day. I’m so excited about the formal now. Had our last dance practise tonight and I’ve pretty well got the knack of the 5 dances we’ve learnt. Mark was away today (from school, that is) [um, what else, if not school?] – very tired. Slept thru’ till about 4th period → 11:30, or so!!!!) Had dogshit on my shoe in chemistry – shit it stunk! Yukky! Told Fi all about Saturday night & Sunday morning . . the things we talked about Sat. nite, especially. So tired!!! Mr Grossetti finally back at school. Did no HW again. SHiT, I’m BAD. After school, went around trying to get a maths textbook. [We must’ve needed a different/new one for the final semester?] NOWHERE!!! Must get Mark to take me to get one from school- I don’t know where. [There was a second-hand ‘book shop’ at school but it was located in an area I didn’t ‘frequent’. It was almost dungeon-like; on the ground level of one of the main (oldest) buildings in the school.] Went to Mark’s place, on way home and dropped off his bowtie A Life in Words(wasn’t home – gone to Edge Hill school to play footie) He rang me anyway! After dance practise (we got on very well!) Sharon rang. Gonna organise getting to FOOT’S CUP Game on Wed. nite. YAY, YAY, YAY! [The Foot’s Cup was an inaugural, ‘unofficial’ rugby league game which I’d thought only involved Cairns High and Saint Augustine’s College, but my research (asking the question on Facebook!) seems to indicated that it may have also included Trinity Bay High, although no one seems certain. Suffice to say, it was a footy game between our school and some other one …and therefore a social event. In 1986 it was definitely against ‘Saints’ because I literally mentioned it; see Wednesday’s entry in this post ….Unless that wasn’t actually the Foot’s Cup?!]

Tuesday 28/7/87

Am bugared! Did no HW again, although I was more motivated tonite, than I ever have been since the start of this semester. [Quite an ironic position to be in, really… the ultimate in procrastination: motivation married with inaction] After school went & had my leg photographed, [unfortunately I don’t have these photographs. If they were actually in the case file I received after its conclusion, I must have (sadly) misplaced them] then off to look for Maths textbook. HOPELESS- none left anywhere in town. Will have to ring about a secondhand one. A Life in WordsFOOT’S CUP Game tomorrow night & I’m going to cheer-lead too! (Linda dropped out) FUN, FUN, FUN! [Ok so, cheerleading Cairns-style in the 80’s was nothing like your modern fanfare: in fact, it didn’t much resemble the cheerleading style we perceived from American movies and TV shows back in the day either. It was, shall we say, not terribly well organised and certainly nowhere near as physically complex or demanding…] Got on v. well with Mark today- it’s good now that I’m his friend, more. Esp. in biol… I sat with him while he talked to Duane, Alan, and them (something I wouldn’t’ve done before) [So timid around the male species. I’d had minimal association with them for most of my life, to date.] But I’m so (well not “so”) relaxed now. [Honesty!] Jo was away. [This indicates to me that we were starting to build a deeper friendship. While we definitely weren’t as close as I’d been with Monique, Jo and I had begun hanging out a bit and she was definitely becoming one of my ‘besties’.] Can’t wait for the formal. I’m so tired; is 9:45. Punish myself with late nights. MUST get a move on, concerning work. [yeah, yeah…] Weather’s warming up again. (POOPY!!) Freddie [my current chosen pseudonym for menstruation] finally. Good, but bad. Oh well.

Wednesday 29/7/87

SO tired. FOOT’S CUP was postponed till Friday night instead. But I went with mum to pick up Julia & Petra from the Smithfield Musical at the Civic Centre. So it’s 10:55 now. God, I’m stuffed. Need more sleep: got new bras this arvy : a strapless one which is useless under my dress→ it shows out the top – mum’s taking it [the dress, not the bra!] back to Mrs E to get elastic put in – it’s too loose around the top. Boring day. I hate school. Haven’t got Freddie. Don’t know what [is going on]! Mark hasn’t bought the formal tickets yet→ leaving it late! His mum Bought him a pair of black socks so he won’t need mine. The black gloves in Val Carnes aren’t there: this arvy I went in…she rang [another store, down] south & they said they’re short ones, after all that! So said I could borrow hers. Rang her tonite but she wasn’t home at all. Will have to ring early tomorrow. [I’ve now ascertained that she most likely didn’t really want to loan my her own pair, and to be honest I completely understand why – teenagers represents a certain degree of risk, especially in a ‘social’ context (read: partying). Would she see her gloves again and if so, in what condition would they return? It’s a valid assumption, yes?] Am getting excited! I’m gonna [CRASH] !! A Life in Words[←this was meant to be ‘boxed’ (see pic) It’s sometimes hard to recreate a few of my diary elements.]

Thursday 30/7/87

God, I’m a glutton for punishment! It’s 10:21. why do I have such late nights (& never do any HW?) Tomorrow will be fairly late, too. Wonder if I can sleep in tomorrow. Made my necklace today (tonight) is fairly good! [Haha, that’s right! I couldn’t afford to buy an actual diamonté (it was all the rage at the time) necklace, so created my own from some diamonté dress ‘trimming’…you can kind of see it in my formal photos below.] Got my gloves this arvy.. not Val Carne’s tho’ ..she couldn’t find hers [!! I’m sure!]-I bought a pair of elbowlength [no typo; it appears as one word in my diary] white ones from the bridal shop in Andrejek’s Arcade. [Apologies to the Andrejics family for my ‘phonetic’ spelling…] will have to dye them. Also, as we’d dropped my dress in, in the morning, we picked it up this arvy – has elasticised top now – stays up better. Love it! Am so excited! Mark hasn’t got tickets yet. Uh-oh! Were a bit untalkative today – barely saw each other at all. God I’m tired! Sports Day tomorrow. Ugh! Am starting to eat again ..craving chips, esp. A Life in WordsAlso chocolate & ice cream (fruit icecream though; those FRUITO’S) [I think I meant ‘Weis’ bars…] So now it’s 10:30. Forgot to make an appointment with Annette [my hairdresser] Shit. Bet she’s booked out. I’m Dead! […tired, I expect that is. Not ‘dead’ because I failed to make my hair appointment. I’m not that much of a drama queen…?]

Friday 31/7/87

I’m really excited now! The sports day wasn’t too bad.. I got burnt- but not painful. It should fade enough for tomorrow night: copped a bit for being strapless etc, [really?] but who gives a ? [atta girl!] My face is quite red-I’m hoping that will fix. Fairly clear skin. Have hair appoint. at 8:30 tomorrow (will go all morning, Annette said!) Tully just beat Bruce today. [Our school sports houses: I was in Bruce. Your ‘house’ was determined by the complex system of …alphabetising surnames.] Auntie Hilary’s here! [I now know why: my grandmother was starting to fall seriously ill – she had been moved from her retirement village unit to the nursing area and was pretty much bed-ridden. It’s strange how little awareness we have in our youth …or is it just self-absorption?] Mark’s got the tickets – he was just giving me shit! [ah yeah… no surprises there. Remember that stuff about whingeing in the past couple of weeks? You virtually asked for ]  So hot today – unbelievable! Briefly saw Nana after school (& then Annette) Got ready in a rush ; (after tonnes of phone calls) picked up Sharon & Justine. Felt very self-conscious about my leg [the visibility of my scar]→ wore leggings tucked up like bicycle shorts [Even though my scar was exposed every day at school, the conspicuousness of a cheerleading role would’ve made me more aware (fearful) of (greater numbers of) others observing (and therefore potentially scrutinising) it …or me.]→but had great fun although CHS lost. Mark left just before the end – said he’d ring. God tomorrow’s gonna be so busy! CAN’T WAIT! Definitely a Red letter day: wish Monique was here to share it. Is 10:15. So much for an early night. Hope I can get 10hrs anyway. Probly not. [Psssh!]

A Life in Words
…after the ‘failed’ professional hairdo…

Saturday 1/8/87

Woke early (angry!! Why can I never sleep in when I need to? SHIT!) Went to the hairdresser’s – washed hair …set in rollers & under the dryer for ages. It was REVOLTING when she’d finished. I faked a grin & left. At home I pulled it apart. YUK. [Yep, I definitely threw a tanty at home…] Did nothing in particular before starting to get ready (properly). I mean I dyed my gloves again (cause they only went dark grey) and things like that. Mark rang. Talked about nothing in particular I rang him. No one can come except Dad & Auntie Hilary to see me dressed. Nana’s too sick & Uncle Mike & Cynthia are in Brisbane. Oh well. [There’s a hint of exhibitionism…] It’s only 3:14. Next time I write’ll be tomorrow. Bye! (Wish me luck & a good time- I’m so excited!!!) [I didn’t actually leave a space in my diary, just followed straight on. This became an occasional habit, especially when I knew I’d be too late or tired to make the entry when I got home: writing an initial entry, in order to reduce the mental effort required to recount everything on the following day. I actually find myself doing this on an almost regular basis these days, simply to lessen my nighttime ‘duties’ …to get to sleep sooner!]

A Life in Words
Here’s the full outfit. So very… 80’s. There are no other words for it.

Well Hi. I’m so tired! Let’s see: Amanda came up shortly after I finished writing earlier, I assume]. I started getting ready around 4:15 -a lavender bath – everything planned. A slight rush towards the end ..with my hair & make-up; [beautiful blue eye shadow – blech!] Dad got photos. Mark came after 2 photos, saw Nana (she’s really not good at all) [We’d arranged to call into the nursing home so Nana could see me in my ‘glory’; to witness one of her grandchildren’s rites of passage. As I write this, I must admit sadly that as far as I can remember, this was the last lucid visit I had with her.] Mark was uncomfortable, I could tell. After photos at his place, picked up Steve & Sue & drove round for a while till 7:30. Inside, sat & drank 2 glasses horrible wine (on my empty stomach) and got happy. [See, now that would be an absolute impossibility these days: Liquor Licensing would have shut that venue down immediately for allowing even one drop of alcohol being within the reach of ‘minors’. There are incredibly huge penalties now for venues and even individuals (yes I believe that includes parents) caught supplying alcohol to the under-aged. I think on the night we were permitted one glass each and I might’ve ‘scored’ my second from someone who didn’t want theirs.] Walking round talking to people, having photos taken, even dancing. I was really happy (in all senses of the word) Phillip N gave me a compliment (not to me tho’ .. Fi overheard him say it→ I was so […next page…]

Sunday 2/8/87

excited. Steve & I went to the Pacific to find Mark & Sue, at one stage. Lotsa photos, talking, hugging, dancing (not any of the dances we learnt, did I do!! There weren’t enough opportunities to, anyway) Walked to Keith’s after.. Mr B took me, Sue, Cameron, Seigi & Nicole to the party after stopping at my place to pick up my gear. I changed at Jo’s & skulled 2½ cups of punch. Stood very happy talking, hugging, eyeing off Philip N & Mark. It was a letdown, really. [Privacy omission] The formal was by far the best part. The best time of my life. I’m not joking. Ended up leaving around 3:30→ slept at Keith’s – Nicole, me, him & Mark (←very drunk) [It’s interesting, considering my ‘issues’ with Nicole, that I hadn’t commented about this… I mustn’t’ve felt as threatened?] woke around 10:00 – but dozed till 11:30. Breakfast at 12:00. They took me home at 1:00, or so & I did nothing for the rest of the afternoon, Amanda came up & we all laughed heaps. Uncle Mike came for tea. It’s 8:50 Wanna get good sleep tonight. God it was EXCELLENT. Wish I could do it all over again. I got so many compliments- I felt pretty (esp. with a guy like Philip N noticing me!!) [It’s unfortunate that our positive self images often rely upon the opinions of others, isn’t it?] CANNOT WAIT for the photos to be developed. CANNOT WAIT! Only wish Moni had been there. [Naturally.] Then it would have been complete. (Cameron does too, I’m sure)