You finished High School at the end of 1995 and your future loomed.
I had missed you all dreadfully since moving to Melbourne early in ’95. We had fun when I was in Sydney for the weekends and the times you guys would visit during the holidays were precious.
They did not, however; replace the easy times we had enjoyed in Sydney when some childish migration between Mum’s place and mine, happened almost every weekend.
You decided to study in Melbourne during 1996 and I was overjoyed with the thought of you living with me for the year.
We had some tense times during the year, but overwhelmingly; the time we spent together in 1996 is remembered with joy, despite things not going as well as they could have with the business.
I tried to shield you as much as I could from the unfolding disaster with the business, but you were too smart for that, thank God.
There were wonderful nights out with Kearns when he was in town, and there were other friends who stuck by me and forced me out of my dark spaces, but it was you, more than anyone else, who became my haven and my joy.
I remember the Sunday morning as clearly as yesterday,
I was taking the day off, it had been a real shit of a week. I had sacked one of the brighter hopes I had for the business and it had been messy and loud.
Craig was opening the office this Sunday and for once in his life, he was on time. The phone rang and it was Craig.
“Bruce, you need to get out here straight away” he did try to explain over the phone but I cut him short.
I quickly got dressed and drove to Keilor, fearful of what I would find, I turned into Old Calder Highway and up the rise to the Office.
The whole side wall of my office was daubed in thick black writing.
“BRUCE FUCKS LITTLE BOYS”
This was my business, it was my life and the market was conservative and tightknit.
I am not sure if I vomited, but I wanted to.
Craig was wonderful, we raced to the hardware store and painted over the offending writing. Hopefully, before most people were venturing out.
Craig and I had a coffee afterwards. He tried; as much as a gawky 22 year old, straight boy could do, to comfort me, but I was distraught.
I was in no doubt as to who had done it, but what really got me was the total dishonesty of the scribble.
Later, you and I were with Kearns, telling him what had happened. As usual, he managed to put a lighter note on the whole thing.
“Darls, they obviously don’t know you very well. Anyone who does, would know you are a Size Queen”
It was hard to get a laugh out of me that day, but he succeeded.
You and I spent the rest of the afternoon together as we had planned. The gentler, caring side of Jassy was the tonic I needed, that is exactly what I got.
I love you heaps