Shiatsu days

13 05 2010

After leaving radio, partly due to my ill health at the time, I felt that I didn’t just want to sit at home and do nothing, but learn something and do something that was gentle and quiet, and thus I fell headlong into my crystal wearing hippy days during the 1990s.

I joined the Australian Shiatsu college in Fitzroy, not having a clue what shiatsu was, but I had thought that massage might be a good thing to try.

So I turned up one morning and suddenly it dawned on me that I had not touched another person in my life, and that for about two minutes I had an internal panic, which vanished after I reasoned that I was here to do this and learn something new and it was going to be fine, and it was.

I started off terribly, referring to the diagrams in my books as I was going, and once got told off by some woman who declared that I’d given her the worst shiatsu she’d ever had, but I think she was having PMS or something, I was defended quietly by other classmates.

Now and then I’d try out what I leant on Dad, who really enjoyed the massages he got, and I found that half way through them he’d fall asleep, which was a good thing as he was not a restful person.

I invited a friend of mine to the school once and worked on him, and was surprised when he started snoring.
the thing that I discovered was most fun was that I could sneak out after the massage, leaving the relaxed person alone, who would generally wake in surprise that I wasn’t there anymore.

The classes got harder and harder and acupuncture points became a part of the study, I felt I had not signed up for this and got a bit annoyed, though I didn’t express my discontent, I often don’t.

I didn’t pass, possibly because I didn’t study much, possibly because I couldn’t bullshit enough.

I think the day when I began waking up was the day that we had the food preparation day. it was one of those health giving hippy diets full of delicious blandness that real people just don’t eat.

Now I should say that I do or did, eat healthy food already. my lunch often consisted of a lovely big salad sandwich and I mostly drank fruit juices or milk (never coffee or tea). yet despite this, I still got cancer anyway.

I was quite happy to learn how to cook something new, but once I tasted it, and I was starving by this time, I hated it. I doubt that cardboard could have been blander.

Fortunately there was a Maccas down the street, and I hastily sneaked down the road and got myself lunch there, which was not really something I’d normally do.

Later there was a discussion on the food and everyone was asked to comment one by one on what they thought of the food… I decided to be completely honest, I told them exactly what I thought, and what I’d had for lunch. some were horrified, but I didn’t care.

Mum used to say “A hungry man is an angry man” and she was right, my stomach was fed up with all the hippy shit and just wanted something to eat for crying out loud.

I’m not saying it was a total failure, the experience was interesting, I made a few new friends, it made me less concerned about my body, I found that I could speak more easily about things which I’d keep locked away in a dark place… and frankly that’s a pretty awful thing to do. and I really did feel a lot healthier thanks to all the massages and yoga we did at the time.

But I was hoping that perhaps it would have lead to a job, it didn’t.

I moved on, I became a “friend of the zoos” and would help at Melbourne Zoo once a week, which I liked.

Everything I’ve done in life revolves around being a volunteer or a student. I tinkered with a dog walking business for a while, which bought in little amounts of money and I also had a job where I was paid $500 once, it was some council job and involved colouring in, I didn’t get it and found it kind of an insult to my intelligence and left.

and here I am.





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