" Synchromysticism:
The art of realizing meaningful coincidence in the seemingly mundane with mystical or esoteric significance."

- Jake Kotze

June 9, 2016

It's All Downhill From Here?

Take note that Alyssa is dressed in purple and read on
On May 22nd (my dead grandmother's birthday) I picked up a copy of my local paper and saw a picture of the youngest Australian to ever reach the summit of Everest, Alyssa Azar.
Alyssa Azar becomes youngest Australian to climb Mount Everest
"It was the Toowoomba teen's third attempt to reach the summit after natural disasters thwarted two previous attempts.
In 2014, while she was at base camp an avalanche struck the Khumbu Icefall, killing 16 Sherpas.
In April 2015, she was again at base camp when Nepal was struck by a devastating earthquake, killing 3,218 people.
Meanwhile, Melbourne woman Maria Strydom has died of altitude sickness while climbing back down the mountain.
She was on her way down from Camp 4 to Camp 3 when she fell ill and died on Saturday afternoon, Pasang Phurba Sherpa, a board director at Seven Summit Treks, told AFP."
Alyssa Azar recalls seeing Maria Strydom on Mount Everest
"Queensland teenager Alyssa Azar has recalled passing Maria Strydom during her historic Mount Everest expedition but says she didn't realise the Melbourne climber was in dire straits."
When I was employed at my last job I had heard of Alyssa's failed second attempt and couldn't decide if she was the luckiest, or unluckiest mountain climber alive.
I first heard about her when my workmate Steve told me all about this young girl who lived next door to his brother in Toowoomba and was attempting to be the youngest Australian to make it to the summit of Everest.
He told me how she had gotten a ladder for a Christmas present and told Steve that it was part of her wish-list to conquer Everest.
I remember thinking that even if I had a death wish I could think of easier ways of killing myself. 
Later that year when I saw the "based on a true story" movie 'Everest' I thought she was either naive, or just plain crazy.
A scene from the movie 'Everest'
I thought she was as mad as Philip Petit when he thought stringing a wire between the Twin Towers and walking on the wire was a great life ambition.
Don't get me wrong though, as I do admire these people for believing that they can do these feats without paying the ultimate price if they fail.
Me on the top of Australia's highest peak April 21st, 2016
I know that it feels good to reach the top of a high peak, although in that picture above the only thing that could have killed me was a heart-attack, falling off the chairlift on the way up/down, a car crash driving to Thredbo to catch the chairlift, or a bolt from the blue.  

But I had told everyone I met that once I had made it to the top of Australia's highest peak that everywhere I go in Australia from now on will be all down hill from here.
To me I did it because it was a symbolic thing to do, since I was just over fifty years old, recently divorced through no choice of my own, had to sell my house which I had grown to love, got retrenched from a job that was OK, suddenly had enough money to live off and do what I want for a few years without worrying about a job, watch my father slowly lose his mind from dementia, while my mother battles lung cancer on a new trial drug because chemo wasn't working for her ... well I think you get the drift ... this was a peak symbolic experience in my life you could say and life was inevitably going to go downhill from this point on for me.   
An oak leaf that fell into my
coffee cup in
The funny thing was though that I was having brunch in Canberra with my son who had taken me to one of his favourite cafes in Canberra on Sunday morning before we headed out to see our team the Cronulla Sharks take on the hometown team the 

Canberra Raiders.
I was discussing the movie we were going to see that night after the game, which my son had picked - 'Batman vs Superman', and a leaf fell into my half drunk coffee.
That was the only leaf that fell on our table while we were there and it had to fall right into my coffee cup as I was drinking my coffee.
We looked at each other in disbelief ... or should that be dis-be-leaf ... and I took my camera out and took a photo of it.
My ticket for the screening of
'Batman vs Superman' for that night.
The view from my table on Sunday
morning of the
oak trees in Canberra.
The weird thing that I found out that night when I saw  

'Batman vs Superman' was the movie starts off with oak leaves falling. 
Not only that, but after half-joking to everyone I met that it was going to be all down hill once I had climbed Australia's highest summit, there is a scene in  
'Batman vs Superman' where Kevin Costner tells Superman on a mountaintop that,"it is all down hill from here".
Six Degrees of Kevin Costner 
I liked 'Batman vs Superman', so much that I saw it again at the Jindabyne cineama the night
before I would climb Mount Kosciuszko.

Sometimes It Snows In April 
Prince died the day I climbed Kosciuszko
Living in the sub-tropical Australian state of Queensland all of my life I wasn't used to the trees that lined the streets of Canberra that lost their leaves in the autumn, or fall as Americans would say.
Queensland is the state Alyssa Azar comes from, as well, by the way.
Looking up at the tree the leaf came
 from that landed in my cup.
A story I saw on page 5 I saw of a Sharks player in the same paper Alyssa Azar made front page on.
On another synchronistic note, my team
the Sharks hit the top of the NRL ladder for the first time in years the same night Alyssa Azar made the top of Everest.
In the same paper is the story of a lady who lost her husband in a freak paragliding accident. 
"The grieving, heavily pregnant wife of a paraglider who plunged to his death north west of Brisbane on Sunday has paid tribute to "our beautiful, loving, dedicated and extremely adoring father and husband."
Austin Desi went out to indulge in what friends describe as "one of the great loves of his life" on Sunday and never came home."
Austin Desi, 35, plunged to his
death in a
paragliding accident
My father's name is Des and his mother and a few others would usually call him Dessy. 

But not only that, he was born in Alyssa Azar's hometown of Toowoomba. 
My father is never coming home again either, and for him it is all cruelly downhill.
There are many nights that I hope for my father to die peacefully in his sleep, rather than to go on in the hellish nightmare of dementia.
Life can be cruel in many ways, but if you live long enough, the odds are that you are going to spend the last years of your life slowly losing your mind and dignity in an old age home that is trying to suck you dry of any assets you have worked hard to get in your life. 
Near the end of my last road-trip I stumbled into the town of Manilla, NSW and bought a hat from the information centre/shop and the man who sold me the hat asked me if I was into paragliding
I told him that you would never get me doing that, as knowing my luck I would get killed.
He told me that Manilla was known for it's paragliding and I said the only reason I knew about Manilla was because of a  
Darren Hanlon song named Manilla and that was the only reason I had made the trip out to see the town.
Manilla, NSW
I would have to say now that after visiting my father day after day and watching him slowly go downhill that a quick death on Everest would probably be my preferred option if someone was to offer it to me. 
When I was coming back down from Mount Kosciuszko to get on the chair lift I saw this sign with the words 'Supertrail" and
"Eagles Way" on it.
I had a chuckle because I had seen 'Batman vs Superman' the night before at the Jindabyne cinema and knew that the movie  
'Eddie the Eagle' had  started it's run today at the same cinema.
"The story of Eddie Edwards, the notoriously tenacious British underdog ski jumper who charmed the world at the 1988 Winter Olympics."
Eddie competed in the 1988 winter Olympics and oddly enough 1988 was the year I got married and was a life member of the
Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks.
The thing I liked about 'Eddie the Eagle' was his number was 24 which is kind of like 42 backwards.
So, in a way Eddie was like a kind of reverse Jackie Robinson, an anti-hero of the sporting world if you like, whose message was just as valid in the world of sporting prejudices.
An Eddie the Eagle type joke in the movie 'Everest':-)
Jackie Robinson Day April 15th
Maybe we also need a 24 day to honour the exploits of Eddie the Eagle to show that being at the bottom of the mountain is just as valid as being at the top, because in the end it is all downhill anyway.
Synchronize: Episode 01: Another Dawn
What is the worst death, dying doing something that you love, or slowly losing your mind and dignity in an old age home that tries to take away everything you worked for in life?
Who'd of Imagined Dragons Being on Top of the World Down-under?-)
"Life's a climb, but the view is great"?
I bought that book in Cooma the day after I had climbed 

  Mount Kosciuszko, it was on top of Pete Townshend's autobiography, 'Who I Am' and I bought it on a gut feeling thinking why would I want to read some Hana Montana book?
Pop Culture and Synchronicity on the Road
Happy Birthday Pete Townshend ... Did Some Reader Out There Just Ask WHO?-).
Scene from 'Everest' ... of the failed downhill climb from the top.
On a personal synch, the 11th of May is my ex-wife's birthday.
Inspirational quote bracelet
Life as they say is a journey, not a destination, but it is still mainly all downhill from the womb to the tomb.
Walk On!

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