Month: January 2011

On Becoming a Goat, and Why We Walkers Walk

I had no further depths to plummet in the summer of 1999/2000, or so I thought. Unemployed, depressed, I’d fled Melbourne – where I’d thrown in my job, my sessions with a kindly Tim Robbins-lookalike shrink, and the two scripts of experimental antidepressants he’d prescribed, unsuccessfully, to set me right – and flown up to the hippy heartland of northern New South Wales to try to mend things. There was a woman there, you see, and a young child… It didn’t work out the way the prescription-fantasies had promised, and I lay low for a while in a rented caravan on a 600-acre backwoods block used by a certain sect of Hindu cultists. My landlord was a little Indian in orange robes who answered to Dada. I carved a vegetable garden into the hillside, and spent my spare time breaking as many of Dada’s commandments as I could manage. Things deteriorated even further with the woman; I bailed to my parents’ place in Brisbane. Bleak times. Then I saw an ad for English teachers in …