26 March 2010


Saturday, I fell off my bike and smashed my two front teeth through my gums. Dad slung me over one of his shoulders and took me to hospital. As he bent down to open the front gate, I saw a little pool of my blood just inside the boundaries of the front garden. I got some ice cream on the way home, after the operation. That was nice.

Sitting in the front garden, I watched the big boys coming and going. Resting up my lips, gums and teeth while sucking on ice cream. Mostly I’d hide behind the bush when they got close because who knew what they might say to me or what they might throw at me.

I saw one boy riding his bike with no hands. It looked brill. I said to myself, one day I’ll learn to do that. I saw another carrying a surfboard on his way to beach. I said to myself, one day, I’m going to find out what that’s about and follow him to the beach. And one who looked vaguely familiar carrying a big plastic bottle of cider. I hid from him.

At sunset, a few more boys with cans of cider and beer, came by.

They saw me hiding.

“Oi, little fucker are you hungry?”

“What do you mean?” I replied from behind the bush. It still hurt to talk.

“Do you want something to eat?”

“No. Why?”

“Because I’ve cooked you a nice omelette.” And then about four rotten eggs were fired my way. Only one of them hit me.  It stunk.

The older boys casually walked off and I went inside to face my mum, who went ballistic at the stinkiness.

I’m never ever leaving this garden, I said.