Dear Inner Circle,
I was sitting in our front garden yesterday when a woman ran towards me and shouted, “I need money!” I guess she hoped that I’d react to her sense of panic and find some cash in super-quick time. “What do you need?” I asked. “A thousand dollars” she replied. “Woah!”, I said, “You’re miles out of my ballpark to help.” “But you drive a Mercedes Benz!” she said. I was a bit surprised. “It’s silver and it’s convertible.” I confessed that I would love a Mercedes if I could afford one, but she was sadly mistaken, “A mate had one that I rode in it once but that was my only ride in a Mercedes ever. When he sold it, I needed a course of anti-depressants and some serious counselling.” The lady looked at me like she never believed a word. “But, you own this whole building” she said. She looked in awe at the front of the Wayside building. Lots of street dwellers have the view that the building in front of us is my personal possession. “I hate to ruin a good story but I don’t own any building of any kind, anywhere.” “Well, what about one hundred dollars then?” she asked. “How about two dollars?” I offered. The deal was done.
I’m writing this note a day early because by the time you are reading this, I’ll be in Brisbane to appear on “Conversations” with Richard Fidler on ABC Radio National. I’m taking three of my granddaughters with me so that they can visit their big sister who has fallen in love with a soldier in the Australian Defence Force and now lives in Brisbane. I lay awake at night thinking up new ways of making these girls say, “Wow”. What a trip this will be as my girls encourage me to break all the rules, only for them to promptly “dob” on me when we get back to Mum. If there’s more fun to be had than being a grandfather, I can’t begin to imagine what it might be.
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