I Know I Am Intelligent Because I Know That I Know Nothing .... Socrates

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Walkabouts & Conversations

I had the opportunity to sit down and have a big chat with my sister Wendy ( Photo of Wendy and the Outlaw Mick ) the other day and as usual when Wendy and I get together and start our “ Little ” chats we end up talking for hours and in the process finding solutions to all the worlds problems.

Another magical thing happens when we get together too, I believe we open each others eyes to truths that sometimes are too close to see. To be honest, I think Wendy does the majority of the enlightening ( of me ).

Wendy and I can just sit and talk, talk like there is no tomorrow and talk in a way where there are no fences or boundaries. We can talk without fear of offending or of being judged by our comments even if politically incorrect or naive at times.

Our “ Chats ” flow like a mountain stream meandering down within a ancient rainforest, ever gathering speed and volume by connecting with other streams and topics of conversation until we are a raging river charging to the sea.

An amazing thing happens when you are blessed with the opportunity to openly discuss topics without fear or judgment or ridicule. You get to wade through the collective mud of beliefs, experiences and misinformation ( which is life ) and eventually exit the other side with the truth. A clarity which can only be achieved by carefully peeling away the prejudices and biases until you are left with nothing but the core truth.

I don’t really have words for how much I enjoy these chats with my Big Sister, I always walk away feeling relaxed, cantered but most of all I walk away feeling heard which in today’s society I find is a rare commodity.

How many times have you had a conversation or greeted someone only to get an automated reply or response, you know they hear you but they have not heard you.

When was the last time you stoped and asked someone how their day was going and actually stoped long enough to hear and care about their answer.

How often have you passed by someone and said “ Hello, how you going ? ” but then kept on walking without missing a step, not waiting for an answer or listening to it even if you hear it.

How often have you been asked how your day was and just auto replied “ all right thanks and you ! ” even though you have heaps on your mind and would love to have a receptive ear to talk to !

We rush on by with our lives in auto mode more and more these days and fail to stop and smell the proverbial Rose, but why ? is life really that urgent these days compared to parents past.

It’s the same with our kids, how often do you pick your kids up from school and ask them how their day was but not actually stop and listen to what they have to say. Especially with kids, what they say and what they are trying to say are two vastly different things and unless you actually STOP, clear your mind and listen to their meaning the whole exercise can end up a wasted effort and leave the child feeling valueless and voiceless ( same goes for adults too ).

The joy of talking to a small child is innocence, most haven’t been exposed to the prejudices of every day life to the extent that their minds are closed to the truth and to simple emotions. Barriers haven’t been built yet to guard them against the cruelty that life can at times throw your way. They still naively believe in truth, honesty, openness and dreaming.

I honestly believe as a race we are loosing the art of conversation and interacting, more and more our worlds are based around the impersonal computers technology.

Without leaving home we can now be educated, shop, pay our bills, socialise, research and the list goes on endlessly, but at what cost with the loss of the personnel interaction we have lost from the experience.

It’s time to stop and talk people, to stop and talk with 100% of our focus and involvement within the conversation.

I’m about to head off for a “ Walkabout ” with my son in two days, we are going to jump in the car and just drive with no plans or set destinations. All electronic devices are being left at home and we are just going to cruise for a week and see where life takes us.

Traditionally a “ Walkabout ” was a coming of age for the indigenous Aboriginals here in Australia, a time when a young man would walk off from his tribe to discover life and themselves. While not quite so adventurous as their efforts but I too hope that this trip will be a coming of age ( to a degree ) between my son and I. He has just turned 13 years and is more ways then I am ready for he is becoming his own man ( Attached is a clip of how HE wanted to celebrate his 13th Birthday )

I enjoy talking to my son as much as I enjoy talking to my sister Wendy, his view is unique in many ways and valid although at times vastly different to mine, we are constantly teaching each other and reminding each other of the benefits of keeping an open mind.

So here is to Long Open Debates with my sister, youthful honest conversations with my son “ Grub ” and always being able to keep an open mind and a full week of Walkabout Discovery.

Till then, thank you for taking the time to read my Blog !



  1. Hey Andrew

    Nice to know that someone (Wendy) is really listening and you can have those conversations. I've recently had some frustrting experiences which have left me pondering about the lack of genuine care and empathy today, and the inability for people to really 'listen' and look beyond the what they see in front of them, and look into people's hearts.

    'Walkabout' is a great word for what you and Dylan are about to embark on. I think it's very fitting and we don't take the necessary time to go 'walkabout'. I think if we did this, we'd be more in touch with ourselves and others and we'd form deeper and more genuine connections.

    Enjoy my friend! I look forward to hearing about your walkabout experience.

    Kerry XOX

  2. Holy sh*t. You could not pay me to do that! Skydive, that is. The driving journey sounds like fun. And Wendy is lovely, I agree, you're lucky to have her. xx

  3. No way!!! I would have wet my pants and passed out cold...all before I jumped out of the plane.