It is Rosanna's fault. She was the one who tempted me to lay bare my soul.
I was eighteen. I have almost forgotten about this, but something reminded me today. It was one of my early sexual experiences. In one way it was disastrous but in other ways it was affirming. I learnt that not all gays were ugly effeminate old men.
There was a newspaper called the Nation Review. It was a left wing radical paper. Maybe RN's Phillip Adams had something to do with it. Maybe enfent terrible, not yet turned into being a tory, Richard Neville had something to do with it. It was full of earnest left wing writing.
But, it had classifieds. Personal classifieds. They were a laugh and serious at the same time.
I saw an ad I liked. You have to remember that this was in the days of snail mail, so when I replied to an add by written letter, it took some time to organise.
God knows why, but we agreed to meet at the corner of Bourke and William Streets in the city, outside BHP House.
I was a niave lad from the country. He was student teacher at Hawthorn Teachers College. Now Swinburne?
He knew a place to go. Studley Park. It was somewhat of a 'lovers lane' I think. I guess I could find the place if I tried.
There were other cars parked around. We were having some fun, in a very inexperienced way and then police arrived. I knew we were doing wrong. It was against the law. The guy did too. He saw the cops and said to me, say nothing, and then left the car and slid down an embankment.
I was cross questioned by the police. They accused me of being a peeping tom there to perve on guys and girls in their cars having fun. I held my nerve. They searched my car and wanted to know why I needed two chamois. One for the windows and one for the bodywork.
They left and the guy came back and we silently agreed that this was not working well. I drove him back to the city where I guess his car was parked.
But you know, this is what I remember most clearly. When we were driving back along Johnston St and he called out, 'look out'. There was a car in left hand lane. There was a car to the right of me. I was just waiting for the car to pass and then I would pull out and avoid the parked car. How dare he, a 23 year old, question an eighteen year old's driving ability.
While I would not say I was a better driver than I am now than when I was eighteen, I think I drove better then than I do now. I had much more confidence.