I woke up in the comfort of my parents house. The sun was beaming through the thin curtains, lighting up the room in a cream coloured glow. I lay atop a queen sized bed, blankets and pillows scattered around. A big yawn escapes my mouth as I stretch my arms out above me and lengthen my spine. It felt good to be away from Sydney, to not have to wake up and wonder what was gonna happen that day. It was so peaceful.
I roll over to check my phone, a ritual I’m sure every twenty-something does. You can’t start your day unless you first bombard yourself with Facebook and text messages and weird emails from companies that specialise in erectile-dysfunction. A message from a friend of mine who lived in Syndey was in the Facebook notifications, I tapped on it. The message contained only one sentence. I mouthed the words as I mentally read the message; Hey man can you please contact me ASAP! 0405**********
Something was terribly wrong.
I message back: I can’t text in Canada.
He writes back: I was visited by the police this morning. It was about Scott…
SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT, I repeatedly said in my mind. I told my friend that I can call him over Facebook (technology is so crazy now) and he says that would work for him.
So I call my friend.
RING RING RING…. RING RING RING…. RING…
“Hello, Cody,” my friend says on the phone. The connection isn’t the best quality so his voice crackles a bit.
“Hi,” I try and make polite conversation like I didn’t already know what he was going to say, “How are you?”
“Well to be honest Cody, not that good. I got visited by the police yesterday.”
“…And what did they want?” I said, stupidly, because I already knew the answer. I’d always known. I knew months before the phone call was made. I even told a friend months before the phone call that I knew what was going to happen at this very moment. It was inevitable.
“They came to tell me that Scott is dead.”
I almost drop my phone.
* * * * * *
The truth is always around you, but you can never quite grasp it. It’s because there is no such thing as truth. Everything is what you make it, which means that nothing means anything. Even the memory of you reading that last sentence isn’t truth, because we can never actually recall the full extent of a past event. We can’t remember details and, as time goes on, our brain will put in details that were never there.
Why am I telling you this? Because this story happened, but isn’t the truth. What I am about to tell you, and continually tell you throughout this blog series, is that this is my recollection of events that lead to a death of a friend and my personal descent into one of Australia’s greatest underbellies. So everything I say is the truth, but it also isn’t because its my truth. If that even makes any sense.
So take everything with a grain of salt. I will try and recall to the best of my unbiased ability, but we all know I could never put into your mind’s eye what really went on. But I’ll try my best.
Everything started a lot longer ago than expected. I am not going to start at the very beginning, even though I already began this story close to the end. But I’m using part of the end to hook people in, so don’t be angry: It will all become clear after a while.
Sometimes I write well, and sometimes its utter shit… so bear with me as I try to get the full truth out.
So it all kind of started (but not really) in Southeast Asia. Koh Tao, Thailand to be exact. I had just been traveling nearly two months through northern Vietnam, Laos, and northern Thailand, but grew bored of the rainforest-lifestyle and skipped from north Thailand to south Thailand to spend a few days on the beach.
It was beautiful. Some of the best snorkelling and swimming is in Koh Tao, so I would spend my days swimming through the reefs looking at all sorts of fish, sea turtles, and sting rays.
I had enough of hostels, having already made my way through $1-a-night rooms shared with 18 other people. I wanted some alone time. So once I got to port from the ferry, I was picked up by this lovely older gentleman from Australia who insisted I stay at his apartment complex that he owned on a secluded beach on the island. He drove a beat-up truck, and had some brown/missing teeth. We agreed on a price and he drove me up and over the small mountain on the island to the other side where his apartment complex lay.
The road to the complex was bumpy, and at one point I thought of bailing out the passenger door when he started climbing up the steepest hill I’ve even seen in my entire life. Like, you could imagine the fear when the vehicle is going up such a steep slope that all you can see is blue sky. Then we come to the top and start heading down. This is where I seriously start to question this guys sanity: going down was even worse than going up. At one point I was so disorientated that I blacked out and saw Jesus. Our vehicle was almost vertical going down and even with my seatbelt on I still had to use my arms to hold my body up from smashing down on the windshield. Despite the horrible driving conditions (that I later grow to love) we make it to the complex alive.
And that’s where I get my first glimpse of HER.
(I’m gay and I just wanted to add to the end of Part 1 that this isn’t the beginning of a love story. Without the knowledge of knowing that I’m gay it sounds like I was saying HER as in I found the one. Let me just tell you: no. Stop that.)