This morning I awoke in Lismore at Ella’s sister’s flat (a house on stilts to protect itself from flooding) remember that indeed it was my birthday and yep I had turned 30!

Shit-son.

Do I feel older? Not really age is never been a marker for me. Growth has. Mental learning, change, and life has.

What marked this as a beautiful day was perhaps the start and perhaps the rest of the day spent reflecting and enjoying what’s around me. Perhaps that’s just a lesson for me in the future to take things slow and really enjoy what I’ve got, what comes to me, and what is around.

Sylvie (Ella’s sister) was hanging around in the kitchen preparing somethings. Soon she asked me to come out on the balcony where she had put out a big fruit platter, some tea, and had fried some fruit. It brought a huge smile on my face only to get bigger when she started playing “Happy Birthday” by Stevie Wonder (a song written for Malcolm X). Apparently, this is a Millard tradition (the song — perhaps the fruit too??). It was a really special way to ring in the morning and got my day started nice. I thought it was really quite flattering that this womyn who only knew me through Ella made all this effort to make me feel special. Something that I will take with myself and give to others.

Now perhaps Sylvie thinks this was nothing but it is. When you see the goodness in people you just want to replicate that with others, and also hug them for being so amazing. Creativity, love, making people feel special, and caring for others is important. That’s something that I’ve grown to learn over the years and definitely lacked in knowledge when I was younger. It’s tragic but true. But I can only march forward with what knowledge exists inside me now and grow from there.

So now I’m off to find a beautiful cafe to have lunch and then head to this deserted train bridge to read a good book (“Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee”) or perhaps write in my journal who knows.

[Update: Now I’ve had an amazing vegan burger — yess progressive in this cool little artsy town — and the womyn at the restaurant offered me a birthday cake and coffee. Damn sugga does this get any better… tonight I’m off to a folk festival in the bush…don’t ask me why I’m near the computer..but if you care it’s cause I’m applying to volunteer at an amazing festival]

Thanks for all the love. Love you guys,

Shane

PS – Mom and Dad the phone call on my cell was a super nice thing to do as well. Especially, considering the cost and all!

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