The shell is cracked


Hey Gram

It was late 1993, Marco and I had split after almost 12 months together, it was no one’s fault really. He was still coming to grips with a new country and I was still trying to learn how to live as a gay man.

I would come home from a week away and find the apartment empty, this was perhaps the hardest adjustment; not having someone at home to share the triumphs and failures of the past week.

I made a rash decision to put an ad. on a gay share website for a flatmate, I wasn’t expecting much, perhaps that is the best way to approach these decisions.

I don’t mean to diminish you in any way, but I think you were the only applicant!

Certainly, you were the only one I seriously considered.

We met on neutral grounds for a coffee before you came to look at the apartment. You were a rising young retail executive from Melbourne who had accepted a position with a leading cosmetics importer, necessitating your move to Sydney.

To someone like myself, who had spent too long with my sexuality locked away and was still processing what it meant to be gay, you were a somewhat exotic creature; an openly gay man forging a career in business. There was not many of your ilk in my orbit.

We agreed for you to take the room on a trial basis for three months.

I remember the weekend you were moving in, I had given you the set of keys and headed back to Melbourne on the Saturday morning, for a series of meetings over the weekend.

I was at Myf’s place later Sunday afternoon and I rang to see how your move had gone, I was greeted by my own answering service.

“Hello, you have reached the home of Bruce and Graham, please leave a message and one of the boys will get back to you very shortly” there was no mistaking the tone of the message.

I turned to Myf and laughed “well, if anybody is in any doubt about whether I am gay or not, a quick call to my home should convince them”

It was a bit ironic my cover had been broken by a flatmate, rather than a partner.

Over the next few months I got to know you better and to meet your partner, Ian who made Sydney, his home almost every second weekend.

There were many times when Ian was with us that you would be busy with work, Ian and I would grab a meal together. He and I became great friends and often when I was In Melbourne, we would catch up for a coffee.

I loved sharing with you, I loved spending time with both you and Ian. Two great friendships have emerged from that first tentative ad. for a gay flatmate.

Thanks Gram, you made a hell of a hole in my shell.

Love Ya




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