I had a sizeable amount of money stolen from my office recently and I immediately had that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach when I discovered the theft.
My first year at Auckland University and I'm feeling pretty good. I'm at University which is a minor miracle in itself.
I'd failed School Certificate first time in 1973 and had to repeat the year. I scraped through the 6th form and got my University Entrance accredited in 1975. It was back to normal in 1976 when I failed my seventh form year (for a University Bursary). It was a bumper year actually as I was also turned down for a scholarship from the Teachers' College to pay my costs at University (I was entitled to go via the UE success and picked up the scholarship in my second year at University).
So I was battling to fulfil my dreams of getting a Masters degree in English and becoming an English teacher (a dream begun when I was 12)..
Early 1977, though, and I was proudly a 'varsity student' making my way to lectures, tutorials (scary things those - everyone knew a hell of a lot more than I did), and the library to study in peace.
All this was to become routine for the next five years - especially the library visits.
I still remember the day in 1977 when I went down into town from the University campus and bought a couple of second hand records (Skyhooks Greatest Hits and a few others). I waltzed up to the library storage locker area outside the library entrance and took out the books that I needed for study, leaving my bags in the locker shelf.
Up to the library third floor I go and suffer over some English essay on D. H. Lawrence's poetry for an hour. Tired of that I return to my storage locker and gape in astonishment and bewilderment.
My records have gone from my bag.
I don't know what to do. No one has stolen anything from me before. I go into the library to ask what to do. It takes me a while to realise that I am invisible.
Embarrassed, red faced and miserable I slink back to the bus station for the trip back home to 4 Ramelton Rd., along the Dominian Road extention in Mt Roskill. I ride the bus in a daze.
The sick feeling in my stomach comes when it dawns on my naive brain that my fellow students can not be trusted. Everybody cheats - I just didn't know until that point. Innocence shattered.
And so to this latest example of experience trumping innocence. My heart tells me that my friends at school are not to blame. I suspect some visiting workers who were doing routine maintenance are responsible but I can't prove it.
I hate that sick feeling.
I also hated the hour Hisham and I spent at the Al Jimi police station to report the theft. The hour was how long it took for us to be seen (there was no one else around - I half expected someone was going to throw me the keys and tell me to lock up when we left), only to be told that we couldn't report it! It had to come from my boss, signed and stamped by Cognition. Perfect!
I got home, did a big workout on the cross trainer (the Fabs' Help did just that too on the ppod shuffle), practised my guitar chords until my fingers hurt and then I played an Opeth DVD...loudly.
Somedays you eat the bear, somedays the bear eats you!
Love and peace - a mauled Bambi