Monday, 28 September, 1998
Michael: Hullo, Bivalia; I'm back again. It's a warm day, with a
slightly blustery north wind, the first thongs day (my thongs were covered
with grit from non-use for several months), and the gas crisis from the
explosion of a gas plant is continuing, and I got a letter today from the
Prime Minister, John Howard.
Bivalia:[a] Well, hullo, Michael. That's a confluence of circumstances almost
worthy of a haiku.
Michael: I guess that sums up my day so far. I guess that's the flavour
of today so far, as I see it. I don't know about a haiku. It's true that the
effectiveness of many haiku depends on the particular atmosphere generated by
the combination of seemingly disparate events or circumstances, but I have to
feel it to write one. I wouldn't quite say this merits one, although I dare
say it would be possible to do so.
Bivalia: So what's the Prime Minister writing to you about?
Michael: He wants my vote of course, or, more precisely, he wants me to
vote for the Liberal member in my electorate. In the last few weeks I've
absolutely been flooded with letters and leaflets from politicians. I don't
think I've ever seen such intense campaigning before an election before. This
could turn out to be a very important election, too, with the implementing of
a G.S.T. (Goods and Services Tax) at stake here, with the social justice
implications I see attached to that.
Of course, John Howard's letter is just a form letter, probably sent to
everyone in the country, or at least to everyone in marginal electorates, such
Bivalia: Do you want to talk about politics today?
Michael: No, not really. I don't have much time to talk about anything
now, because I'm visiting my mother later today. I'm just making one of my
dropping-in-to-see-you visits now, and I was just trying to give you the
flavour of today.
I just laughed when I saw the letter from John Howard. He must be
desperate to appeal to people like me for votes.
Bivalia: You're no less important than anyone else. If in fact you are in
a marginal electorate, your vote could count for more than those in electorates
held safely by one party or another.
Michael: Yeah, I know. It just seemed funny, the Prime Minister writing
Bivalia: And the gas explosion is another part of your day?
Michael: Not all that much. I'm aware of it, so it's kind of in the
background, and I wondered if I would be able to buy any lunch. (Bread and
milk are being hit, because milk can't be pasteurized, and thousands of
gallons of milk are being thrown out.) [b]
I'm still not cooking in Healesville yet, because I haven't got my fridge
up yet, and can't store food, and my hot water is not gas, so it hardly
affects me at all.
As for the weather, I suppose it affects me as much or as little as it
does anyone (other than farmers and similar people whose work depends
intimately on the weather). But I tend to be sensitive to the moods or
atmosphere of the weather, and of the sky. Today's perhaps the first really
summery day we've had this season.
Bivalia: Yes, I would say the spirit of spring has already arrived in your
part of the world, and the spirit of summer is not far behind.
Michael: There were areas of cloud, but in the clear areas
(predominating), there were just one or two tiny little clouds, all alone like
islands. I saw that the other day, too. Well, I guess it's common, but I
noticed it particularly on those occasions. It seems summery somehow.
Bivalia: I think your tendency to notice the moods of nature is one of the
things that keeps you in touch with Spirit. Don't lose touch with that. Most
people in your society probably notice broadly what the weather is, but it is a
pity that many of them don't notice the details, the things which add to the
atmosphere of the day. As you know, days have atmosphere, or spirit, as well as
Michael: Anyway, other than those things, I don't have much to say.
I missed you yesterday. But I was out all day, playing at Franck's, and
last night was not a good time to have a session. I had a few things to do.
Bivalia: That's all right.
Michael: I still think I'm not likely to be able to see you daily, for
the reasons I've mentioned before.
Bivalia: Well, it was just an experiment I asked you to do, not necessarily
a permanent arrangement.
Michael: I have some reluctance to clog up these pages with too much
ephemeral chit-chat of this kind, because they are a kind of diary of my
Bivalia: Well, if you like, you could keep a separate file (or set of
files) for things like this.
Michael: Oh, I'll probably stay with it for this experiment; but if I
decide to keep having short daily sessions, I might do what you suggest.
Anyway, Bivalia, I might finish up here, because I have no more to say,
and I do have a few things to do before I leave here.
Bivalia: Okay. Nice of you to drop in anyway. See you later, Michael.