07 June 2020

A few Fridays ago I went for a chilly evening walk around the wetlands near our apartment. One of the walking tracks leads to a place called Dairy Road, so you often hear cows along the way and see them too. It makes me feel so far away from my computer and the city :)

I'm starting to feel a lot more confident about going out as more restrictions ease, which brings a certain lightness. Last Saturday we met up with friends in the park to celebrate a birthday. I made a batch of Odette William's vanilla cupcakes with mascarpone icing and packed some candles and matches. The morning fog lifted right after we sang happy birthday and it was so nice to be out in the sun with friends. Also, how sweet are birthdays with kids around? I love watching them delight in the novelty and deliciousness of it all.

That night we also saw my brother and sister-in-law for the first time in over a year. They've recently moved back to Australia from the US and I thought it might feel totally surreal to see them again given the circumstances. Mainly it just felt really nice, with so much to catch up on. Tony made fresh pasta with chilli, bacon and tomato sauce and it felt pretty crazy to be setting the table for guests after months of eating at home, just the two of us.

This week I've been glued to the news and social media once more, watching the Black Lives Matter protests unfold in the US and around the world. I've watched videos of police attacking protestors and the media and felt horrified.  I've also been moved by protestors singing 'Lean on Me' together in Washington and the story of Rahul Dubey, who sheltered protestors fleeing from police after curfew.

Earlier in the week the protests coincided with the end of Reconciliation Week. I was lucky enough to join an Indigenous language lesson at work and it reminded me that there are so many ways we can acknowledge the traditional owners of the land in our everyday lives, from knowing the land you're on (Ngunnawal for me) to learning more about Indigenous history and culture.

I wanted to share two films that I've been thinking about a lot this week. They're both available to rent from an indie Sydney cinema, with profits going to the Aboriginal Legal Service NSW. One is I Am Not Your Negro, a documentary about James Baldwin that helped deepen my understanding of racism in America and the Civil Rights movement. You can also rent The Namatjira Project, a documentary about Indigenous artist Albert Namatjira and his family's fight to reclaim the rights to his work, and the touring theatre show that tells his story.

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