But first, as my Facebook friends know the Wollongong High Class of 1975-1980 are planning their reunion later this year. I taught many of them, and have been invited. On a private Facebook group there have been many pictures posted, and while I would not post anything without permission I think this one is pretty much in the public space.
It shows the school specials picking up at WHS after school, sometime in that 1970-1980 decade, my guess being 1976. So long ago! I feel positively ancient now…
Now for last year:
I wasn’t in town yesterday, but quite a crowd was — and I am proud of my city! Here is Wollongong yesterday:
And proud of my Friday lunch companion Chris T, who posted this on Facebook:
O.K. I’m not Robinson Crusoe here. I have spent the weekend watching the horror that is the A.B.C news and trying to come to terms with this atrocity. I have, like all of us been trying to come up with the answer to the obvious question, what can I do about it. The answer is always the same. Little or nothing. Not acceptable to me. I must do something. So I make this promise. I have Fridays off and usually do very little with them. From today I will spend my Fridays outside my local Mosque during Friday prayers. I’m not a hero and I assume that this action is entirely symbolic but my message is simple. If you want to go in there and kill Muslims you will have to kill at least one White Christian first. I invite you all to join me. I doubt that anybody will turn up with a gun but if they should perhaps they will think twice before killing people who look like them.
Last night was a corker! Such thunder and lightning, and so close overhead in West Wollongong. Some pics by way of illustration: the first I took from my place five years ago, but it could have been yesterday. The second is from Illawarra Storm Chasers, and is in fact February — but it is so good!
Here is an old bastard who seems to have appropriated my identity. He is sitting as I write in City Diggers, Wollongong. His fingers are on my laptop keys! How does he do it? Note 1) the Irishness in the background and 2) that card, to be accurately completed over the next few months.
And in this celebration of an old friend from the 70s onwards, I note an episode that is almost certainly true, though I don’t recall it from my Wollongong High days. The writer was there at the time though.
. I remember one parent-teacher night when she came to speak to a few of my teachers at Wollongong High School, whose classes I was having trouble with. My maths teacher at the time was pretty useless and Mum explained to him how bad his teaching method was and what he could do to improve it. At the end of the night, this teacher bumped into one of Mum’s friends, Neil Whitfield, who was also teaching at Wollongong High. Looking exasperated he told Neil he had just met “the most awful woman”. “Oh”, Neil replied, “you must mean Nina Southall. She’s a good friend of mine.” I’m not sure what my maths teacher learned from this experience. He certainly didn’t take up mum’s offer to attend her lectures on the philosophy of education.