July 7

Dear Josephine,

That idea of compromise was bothering me ... although I suppose it's an idea that we can use as a loophole by cleverly evoking a different meaning of the word. Smugly interjecting it into a conversation, `and by the way, did you know that compromise, according to my faithful MacQuarie, also means, something intermediate between different things ...' And what might those different things be: the devil and the deep blue sea? Might it then be safe to say that writing is intermediate between different things, a meeting; or that writing is one of the different things? I know I am playing silly games ...

On the matter of Wik, I must say that some compromises aren't ever worth entertaining. It shames the integrity of Native Title, of Reconciliation. Such a ruse for the prime minister to attempt to mediate, to even consider that he is or can be the intermediary, when he is, in my opinion, compromise itself, the weak link. The government wields while others yield ...

I have just returned from a meeting and because we continue to have those beautiful clear winter days, it seemed a good idea to walk. As I am waiting at an intersection for the walk signal, the man standing next to me breaks into sermon: 'Be born again Jesus said. Praise the Lord. Repent your sins or burn in hell for eternity ...' With that, the light turns green and I watch the Preacher Man walk ahead, continuing to chant his sermon, his passionate plea for repentance, across the road and across the bridge, offering passers-by his literature until I can no longer hear him. And then I think of John Giorno's text, 'you got to burn to shine.' It made me laugh out loud and then I realised that it's more embarrassing or disconcerting for other people to watch someone laugh at a private joke in public than it is for them to listen to themselves being damned to hell.

I hung my new curtains yesterday. They are a bit too long so I will have to adjust the hem. You're right about letters. Some things offer no invitation and attract no response. They just slip away after a silent acknowledgement, unlike the experience of moving for another passenger on a domestic flight. I hope your flight tomorrow is without event. I also hope your paper is a hit at the AFC Conference. You have to watch out for those stewards. When I was flying back from Melbourne recently, I was asked to move too and then for the entire flight, at every available opportunity, my 'kindness' was affirmed by the steward and eventually rewarded with a complimentary bottle of champagne. I suspect the bottle of champagne might have been a thank you for putting up with being thanked for two hours. As I say, I hope it all goes well. I look forward to hearing all about it ...

love,


Linda