Today.

today we went shopping.

we went to get a jacket for marv. It was cold. We came to the gold coast, chasing warm weather. It chased us here. Bummer. But it was sunny and fresh. With the right clothes, it’d still be enjoyable.

We went to the mall. It was full of shops we knew and then some. I was busting for the loo. Basic need meet. We find the shop Marv was looking for and we wandered through. The sales assistant came and helped. I noticed the sales assistant was very pretty.

I did my bit and she did hers. I noticed her short skirt, slinky top and great boots. I picked a jacket. She smiled and agreed with my choice. Marv didn’t look happy. Well, more like, unconvinced. Size change, colour change, style change, slightly. Success.

We continued talking through the changes. She was from France (we figured), studying and slowly making friends. We talked about short skirts (she doesn’t wear them late at night to go out), the people who live here (transient), reasons for coming. We suggested other places to get work and people we could introuduce her too. Make her feel welcome.

She says, I have to tell you something. I felt foreboding.

She opened up. She told us went out one night. Showing friends around. They came home on the bus. Drunk guys start hassling them. She tells them to get lost. She and her friends left the bus. So did the drunk guys.

The drunkest drunk guy hassles them some more. Looking for a fight. She tells her friends to run. She defends them. Verbally. Pushes him back, to keep him away.
He hits her. She hits him back, and has him on the ground. She packs a punch for a little lady. His friends joins in. The other guy is back up. The y both hit her. She is on the ground.

She feels her stomach. It’s wet. She wonders if she’s wet herself. She hasn’t. She looks down and finds her hands wet with blood. With insides. With stuff. He has stabbed her. She calls her friends to call police, ambulance. She is dying.

The men run away. Wipe the knife clean. No good. The police catch them.

She is in hospital for two months. Doesn’t tell her parents. It cost $50 000 for her to come here. She isn’t going to let one bad experience ruin her trip. She shows us the scar-he didn’t just stab her. There is one puncture, and one long, long line where he attempted to open her up.

She says she saved her friend from death-she had the determination to live, but thinks her young friend would have died. The men had intent to kill-that it was a woman didn’t deter him. That it was someone innocent didn’t deter him. Was it that he was drunk?-he had the knife before that.

We cried together, and I gave her a hug. Lots of hugs. No family to comfort her, to retell the story and help her through. She was a remarkable girl. I’ve been thinking about it all day.

Marv n I have both read a book called Overtaken by Alexi Sayle, about how a person’s criminal act affects his life and he decides he wants to rehabilitate the guy-jail’d do nothing. That seems better in the long run. I begin to smile at everyone I see, say hi when able.

We talk about it all day. I often am on the verge of tears. How could this have been avoided? How are people like this produced? Can’t be blamed on alcohol-he had the knife before. Can say there needs to be more respect for women, for people-why stab anyone? Need to teach people other options for living. Parents, schooling. What we can do.

All I can do today is smile at people. All I can hope is to share a little love, that their day be better, that people feel happier, more loved and maybe there are less of these incidents in the world.

Smile at someone today. Please!

Journal Comments

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  • Michael Douglass
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