The best of times, the worst of times

Charles Dickens wrote in a Tale of Two Cities:

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.

This became an important issue for me today. I have been able to come home following extensive treatment thanks to the wonderful support service offered by the Braidwood Multipurpose Service (link) and Canberra Pathology blood testing service. I feel immensely proud that is available for a rural patient whom otherwise would have to stay in Canberra.

Whilst away from Braidwood. I have marvelled at the way the community has worked together to face daunting circumstances. This made it my epoch of belief and my season of light. My absence from the firefront as a volunteer firefightern has made this an enormously significant and I have a profound sense as my friends become part of the community’s fight against an inferno.

The fragility of this community effort was brought home to me the season of darkness. During the day, it became apparent that one of the fires to the south of Braidwood may have been started deliberately. On a very hot day this fire has spread rapidly and has threatened communities. This added to my winter of despair when I learning of some people’s attempt to loot properties devastated by fire. Both actions, arson and theft counterdicted all of the community’s efforts to be together and thrive through connections.

I find their actions incredulous but realise that I have nothing in common with their pursuit of public attention and material needs. The day included for me a friend’s tears as we drank a coffee in an empty cafe. It is where hope and despair met and an agreement that we needed to step up to move to the best of times.

Photo Credit

Braidwood Showground (RiotAct)



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