SKETCHES OF SYDNEY

A Rough Morning

June 8, 2011

The ambulance was pulled up on the curb. Lights flashing, sirens silent. It was 8.00 am. I was walking to the train station on the way to work.

There was no commotion. There was none of the yelling or screaming that you associate with violence. Maybe someone elderly had an accident: a slip in the shower, or a heart attack.

I craned my neck over the slate wall that hid the building’s forecourt from the street. A man sat on the curving ramp that led into the foyer, topless. An ambo was wrapping a bandage around his shoulder. Blood seeped through the white bandage, turning it pink.

I glimpsed a second man, lying in the middle of the driveway that ran behind the wall, curled up in a foetal position. No one was attending to him.

There were a few police on the scene, no cars though. It was a short walk from the local police station to the Potts Point apartment block.

A suited detective checked the police tape pulled across the driveway and tightened it: securing the scene.

It couldn’t have been a car accident. A car couldn’t find enough speed to mow down one man and injure another in such a confined space.

Waiting for my train, I texted a friend who lived in the building. He called back, but had no idea what I was talking about. He was already at work.

In the office, I switched on my computer. There was no mention of the incident on Sydney news websites. Instead there were stories about Pink’s pregnancy and Masterchef meltdowns.

Through the day, my thoughts drifted back to the body on the driveway. Nobody was looking to him – as if there was nothing that could be done. Had I seen the first dead body of my life, that morning on the way to work?

Late in the day I got a text from my friend. It had been a knife fight, he said. A knife fight at eight in the morning seemed absurd, not an explanation. A man bled to death, like a stuck pig, in front of a luxury apartment block on a mundane Friday morning?

On the way home, I walked behind the slate wall, along the driveway and looked at the cobblestones. There were dark splotches and smears: spilt car oil, not blood.

I wondered if the incident had disturbed me too much. Or whether it hadn’t worried me enough.

Chris Ryan



MORE


Comments (2)

 

  1. Scarlett says:

    Lovely story. Sad.

Leave a Reply



MORE SKETCHES OF SYDNEY


Sydney

Dragons, Gorillas and Giant Shoes

Dragons, Gorillas and Giant Shoes

A picture’s worth a thousand words. Enjoy a roughly-written 5000 word essay on 24-hours in Sydney.

No Comments




Art

A Hit in Erskineville

A Hit in Erskineville

No Comments




Photography

Sydney After Dark

Sydney After Dark

The Sydney sold in tourism ads is one of golden beaches, blue skies and a sparkling harbour. In a series of noirish photographs Christian Ferreiro, a graphic designer, has captured an altogether different place.

No Comments




Cheap Feeds

Pigging Out

Pigging Out

In the bain-maire at Four Seasons Chicken Spot in Kings Cross, the pickings are slim but fatty.

No Comments




Art

The Painted Lady

The Painted Lady

A French-born artist’s twenty year devotion to his work has turned a patch of graffiti into a Sydney landmark.

1 Comment




People

Goodbye Oxford Tavern

Goodbye Oxford Tavern

We speak to Lyndal Irons about her photographic exhibition documenting the final days of Petersham’s iconic Oxford Tavern.

No Comments




North Bondi

Raising a Stink in North Bondi

Raising a Stink in North Bondi

“What is that thing?… And what’s that smell?” Anyone who’s spent enough time in North Bondi for the wind to change direction will have heard a visitor ask such questions.

1 Comment




Animals

Statue Rubbed Up the Wrong Way

Statue Rubbed Up the Wrong Way

A tribute to two Sydney surgeons has been molested by people who can’t understand the simple instruction, “Rub my nose.”

2 Comments




Art

Protest Blocked

Protest Blocked

How the depressing daily journey into work was made just a little more depressing, so the people of Pine Street could get a good night’s sleep.

Comments Off




Alexandria

Santa on the Street Corner

Santa on the Street Corner

A month out from Christmas Santa is at work on the streets of Alexandria trying to illicit a beep from drivers.

No Comments





Copyright © 2014 Sydney Outsider. All Rights Reserved