All that I am, all that I ever was…

I am more than my mental health. I am more than my homelessness. I am more than any one aspect of me. I am Addy. And this is…

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Twenty (more) things I’d like to do before I die

The latest prompt in the 15 day blog challenge asks:
write about something you’ve always wanted to do, but haven’t.


Just before Christmas 2005 I wrote my one (and only) things to do before I die list. Given seven long years has passed since writing that expansive list, I’ve decided it’s about time I updated it…and today’s prompt in the challenge is a wonderful excuse to do just that.

So here are twenty brand spanking new things I’d like to do before I die!

1. Visit the Table Mountains of Southern America

2. Publish an e-book about the journey I’ve taken through mental illness and homelessness

3. Participate in a nudie run

4. Be someone’s ‘best man’

5. Spend two weeks in Iceland

6. Achieve a better relationship with each of my voices (primarily Vanessa and Shay)

7. Have a beer with Serena Ryder

8. …and give the divine songstress a hug! :p

9. Read every book on the BBC’s list of ‘100 book to read before you die

10. Participate in a Russ Harris led Acceptance and Commitment Therapy training session

11. Perform in a stage-version of any Shakespeare play

12. Obtain a Wii U so I can play (and complete) the only Zelda game I’ve never played: The Wind Waker.
Note: Completed in June 2014 after my brother lent me his Wii U and a copy of the aforementioned game. Not the greatest Zelda game (that remains Link’s Awakening) but certainly not the worst (that remains The Adventure of Link).

13. Learn how to play the piano

14. Visit every state of America

15. Visit Prince Edward Island; home to Anne of Green Gables

16. Live to see a film adaptation of every novel in the Chronicles of Narnia series.

17. Cycle from Melbourne to Sydney

18. Live to see the 100th Anniversary of Doctor Who

19. Create my range of “Spank the Stigma” merchandise…
Note: this is a range of T-Shirts, underwear, bikinis, other miscellaneous clothing, temporary tattoos, key rings, badges, car stickers and other miscellaneous giftware that I’ve imagined. Each item is emblazoned with a logo related to giving mental health stigma and discrimination the spanking it rightly deserves.

20. …and establish a website to sell said merchandise to raise money for mental health related causes.

Only time (and my own personal hard work) will tell if I’m ever able to cross any of the items from the list. But rest assured, should I ever do so, you wonderful people will be amongst the first to know! :)

Previous installments in the Challenge:
Day One | Day Two | Day Three
Day Four | Day Five

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Try Looking At It Through My Eyes – Day 07: The Day Out

The seventh day in the “Try Looking At It Through My Eyes” challenge (devised by Bold Kevin over on Voices of Glass) asks: If you could be taken any place fairly local for a day, where would you choose, who would you choose to go with, what would you like to do and why those choices?

Woolshed Falls

woolshed falls

Woolshed Falls, Australia (allegedly!)

These waterfalls have taken on mythological status over the last eighteen months. Almost every week someone speaks of these waterfalls in a voice usually reserved for revealing the location of the Holy Grail (or at the least, Castle Anthrax), so much so, that I have begun to question whether or not they actually exist.

Sure, I’ve seen photographs of them – or rather, photographs that purport to depict Woolshed Falls – but have yet to lay eyes on them myself. Thus, if I were to go on a day out, I wouldn’t hesitate in choosing these falls as my destination; partly to prove (or disprove) their existence, partly because my people and I adore waterfalls of all shapes and sizes and partly because I would much rather a day out in the open air, than a day out in some stuffy shopping center or amusement arcade, which are the only other options in my locale.

Obviously, there are many people I can think of taking to Woolshed Falls; Karen Gillan or Jenna Coleman, for example. And if I were to take either of these people, I can think of a few things I’d like to do whilst there; kissing or sexy underwater cuddling, for example. But as it’s highly unlikely I will have the opportunity to underwater cuddle either of these actresses I shall have to be more realistic in my choice of companion.

Thus, my companion of choice would be my support worker, for a variety of reasons.

Given that the falls are (allegedly) 40km-ish from where I live, I would need someone to drive me. Also, their approach to life is both intelligent (for interesting conversation) and fun-loving (a pre-requisite for a day out). In addition to this, my people are comfortable in their company so there wouldn’t be any problems if I suddenly began conversing with thin air and, for safety reasons, their mental health training would come in handy if I had a random panic attack or felt the sudden urge to hurl myself from the top of the falls.

They also have a love of photography, which segues nicely into my answer to the ‘what would you do’ portion of the prompt. For I can think of nothing more relaxing, therapeutic and enjoyable than wiling away a few hours hiking in and around the Australian Bush taking random photographs of waterfalls, eucalypt trees and insomniac wombats.

Should I ever get the chance to take these photographs – and in the process, prove the existence of this mythological place – I shall let you know. Until then, it will be added to my list of things to do before I die; for any place as highly spoken of as Woolshed Falls is definitely worth a visit.


If you’ve missed any of the previous posts in this challenge, you can read them here:

| Day 01 | Day 02 | Day 03 | Day 04 |
| Day 05 | Day 06 |


101 Things I Want to Do Before I Die

I first wrote this on a beautiful summer’s day just before Christmas 2005 and recently came across it buried in the dregs of the internet. After re-reading it – and remembering the fact I was topless in Edinburgh Gardens whilst writing it (oh, how things change!) – I decided to post it for all to see.

Technically, I can’t call it a Bucket List as it was compiled long before I became aware of that term. So it’s just a list of things I want to do before I head off to explore the undiscovered country.

Note I: Aside from the first five items, the list is in no real order.

Note II: Those crossed out have already been completed!

Note III: Some of the items have been amended or altered given the changes in circumstances between then and now. For example, item (2) was written referencing my then partner – and it would seem a little odd now to have fathering her child as an item on my bucket list.

If anyone feels like giving me a hand with any of the uncompleted items, I’ll reciprocate however/whenever you wish…especially if that item is (1) Anyone who helps me with that will receive infinite thanks and an eternity of favors :p

  1. I know what this is but I can’t write about it here. It’s not illegal in any way, shape or form and is something most people have experienced at some point in time. It’s ridiculously simple, something I’ve wanted for over two decades and no matter how hard I’ve tried to cross this item off the list it still eludes me…and yes, it’s bloody annoying I still haven’t crossed this off!
  2. Become a father
  3. Visit Uluru
  4. Go to university
  5. Be able to talk to people about who I am, what I believe and the things I feel without suffering crippling panic attacks.
  6. See a fictional story I wrote published
    Note: Completed in 2009 when I had a short story published in a magazine.
  7. Write The Ghosts That Haunt Me
    Note: Completed in 2007 (initial first draft) to 2009 (final draft)
  8. Be able to walk into a bookstore and purchase a copy of The Ghosts That Haunt Me and say to the cashier “I wrote that” with a stupid grin on my face!
  9. Write and direct a film version of The Ghosts That Haunt Me.
  10. Visit the Shetland Islands
  11. Do a nudie run
    Note: Completed in 2007 courtesy of a manic fuelled desire to win a bet Sammi posed.
  12. To be able to say I have a best friend
  13. Visit Tasmania
  14. Read Jane Eyre
    Note: Completed in 2008, back when I had the ability to focus on reading.
  15. Create a time-machine and travel back in time to hang out on Glenelg Beach 26 January 1966, so I can discover what happened to the Beaumont Children.
  16. Perform one of my public renditions of Shakespeare with someone else reading a role.
  17. Become a citizen of Australia.
  18. Again, I apologise for the mystery, but I can’t talk about this one as it’s a companion to item (1)
  19. Adapt and direct a film version of Macbeth.
  20. Have a pet turtle, whom I shall name Magnus
  21. Visit South America (specifically the Incan Pyramids)
  22. Star in an episode of Doctor Who
  23. See a live Runrig concert.
  24. Reconnect with my Canadian friends.
  25. Once more, I can’t talk about this one either as it’s (once more) connected to item (1)
    Note: Completed in Adelaide, 2007 and Glasgow, 2008.
  26. Visit Tasmania
  27. See my sister again
    Note: Completed in July 2007 when my sister came to Melbourne following a suicide attempt. Probably the worst thing that could have happened to me given all I was going through at the time!
  28. See my sister reach a healthy, stable state where she can live a ‘normal’ life and achieve all her dreams.
  29. Visit Antarctica
  30. Meet Colin Hay (at the time my favourite singer, now, my second favourite singer)
    Note: Completed in March 2006 at the Port Fairy Folk Festivalwhen he signed my favourite album of his (Company of Strangers) and then again a few weeks later when he played a gig in Melbourne.

    Item 30…Completed 2006!

  31. Cuddle a wombat
    Note: Completed sometime in 2010 whilst homeless. There was a mini Aussie animal petting zoo set up in Federation Square so I stole the opportunity.
  32. Live for a year in the Outer Hebrides, writing a book about my experience. Possibly with my pet turtle (a la Ring of Bright Water)
  33. Have an exhibition showcasing my photography in a gallery.
  34. Create a time machine and journey back to Scotland, 1745.
  35. Obtain a doctorate so I can officially (and somewhat arrogantly) nickname myself ‘The Doctor’ :p
  36. Spend the day on a nude beach!
  37. Hike the West Highland Way.
  38. Karaoke Holding Out For a Hero with a group of friends
  39. Definitively prove the existence of the Loch Ness Monster.
  40. Become Grace’s friend.
    Note: Completed 2006. Then I royally screwed up in 2008. Closest I ever came to item (59).
  41. Learn how to drive.
  42. Travel the Trans-Siberian Railway
  43. Travel the Gahn Railway (Adelaide to Darwin)
  44. Travel the Indian Pacific Railway  (Sydney to Perth)
  45. Again, this one is connected to item (1). Sorry.
  46. As is this one! Bigger apology!
  47. Visit every state in Australia.
  48. Overcome my mental health issues so I can live a normal, productive life.
  49. Be a member of a regular Pub Trivia Team
  50. Undertake a ‘silly boy’s project’ and then write a book about my adventure!
  51. Be the recipient of a surprise birthday party
  52. Cycle the Bay in a Day
  53. Climb Ben Nevis
  54. Visit Sydney
    Note: Completed in June 2008. Seeing the Opera House and Harbor Bridge was awesome. As was the National Gallery. Aside from this, I’m not a huge fan of this city.

    Item 54… Completed 2008

  55. Attend a High School Reunion and not be seen as a pointless failure in life!
  56. Cycle across the Nullabor
  57. Hug Toni Pearen.
  58. Live to see the day when same-sex couples can marry legally in Australia
  59. Be someone’s “friend” for at least three years!
  60. Write a non-fictional book about Scottish folk and folklore.
  61. Learn how to play the fiddle
  62. See an Otter in the wild
    Note: Completed in April 2008 when I saw one casually swimming down the river Ness. I immediately thought of my first girlfriend, who always wanted to see an otter in the wild.

    Item 62…Completed 2008

  63. Create a time machine and journey back to Caldicot, 1993 and give myself a good beating for being such a shy, anxiety prone pillock!
  64. Have my own radio show on 3RRR
  65. Write, produce and direct a feature film and then have it featured at the MIFF.
  66. Establish the website I’ve had in mind for three years relating to item (1)
  67. Karaoke Paradise by the Dashboard Light with a friend.
  68. Fly around the world on the back of a Dragon.
  69. Live to see the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who!
    Note: Completed November 2013 when I watched ‘The Day of the Doctor’ worldwide simulcast.
  70. Read a Patrick White novel
    Note: Completed April/May 2012 when I borrowed Voss and A Fringe of Leaves from the library.
  71. Create, write and edit a fanzine style publication featuring fiction, poetry, non-fiction and photography.
  72. Hug David Tennant!
  73. Spend some time lurking around that bookstore in Paris you’ve always dreamed about!
  74. Visit Spain and learn how to salsa whilst there.
  75. Write travel book(s) about my time backpacking, calling them “A Shy Guy in…[country]”
  76. Learn how to tango
    Note: Completed in Adelaide, 2007 whilst manic. And yes, I was pretty darned awesome at it!
  77. See the musical Spamalot
    Note: Completed in April 2008 when I spent a couple of nights in London. Alan Dale played King Arthur!
  78. Adapt and direct a version of the book The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty
  79. Become owner of my own Backpacker Hostel.
  80. Meet Charles De Lint.
  81. Slap Louise’s brother for being an arrogant, self-absorbed, pretentious prick.
  82. Visit Luxembourg. Just so I can say I’ve been there!
  83. Swim with sea turtles
  84. Be able to look at myself in the mirror and not vomit (curse my body image issues!)
  85. Read Death in Brunswick
  86. Establish my own independent publishing company.
  87. Realize my business plan for the café/bar/shop business you’ve been working on for years!
  88. Publish a photography book celebrating the female form (tasteful and creative a la Bernadine, not cheesy soft-core)
  89. Write a short story collection related to item (1) and have it published for people to enjoy!
  90. See my name published in a newspaper
    Note: Completed in 2002 when I had a letter published, and then on several occasions until 2009.
  91. Run the London Marathon
  92. Introduce Australia to the joys (if not health benefits) of sausages in batter!
  93. Chill out in Rome
  94. Watch a live snooker match
    Note: Completed in February 2008 when I spent a day at the Welsh Open in Newport, South Wales. First match watched was the brilliant Ronnie O’Sullivan. Second match, Mark Williams. Great fun!

    Item 94…Completed 2008

  95. Take my daughter – upon completion of (2) – on a trip around Scotland to show her how beautiful, varied and amazing the country and its history really are!
  96. Visit Newfoundland
  97. Ride an elephant whilst dressed as Indiana Jones circa Temple of Doom
  98. Learn how to swim with my eyes open.
  99. Hug Audrey Hepburn (may have to utilize the time-machine for this one!)
  100. Make a positive difference to someone’s life.
    Note: Completed in March 2015 when I received an email from someone who wishes to remain anonymous asking me to tick this item off the list. Plus, I believe I’ve helped a number of people by writing this blog, thus making a positive different to their lives. If you disagree, please contact me and let me know! :p
  101. Wear a kilt (in the traditional fashion) to a public event!
    Note: Completed in April 2008 when my brother and sister-in-law allowed me to wear one at their wedding. Not sure if they knew I was ‘traditional’ beneath the kilt though…ahh well, they do now!