I was in Sydney, about to visit Barker College with a group of Vietnam veterans for several days. Great event. I have attended several times over the years. The day before it started, I decided to go for a walk; I was lodged in a hotel near the college. As I was about to cross a road, after glancing to my right several times, I stepped out and suddenly began flying? yes, I stepped in front of a vehicle; it was a one-way street!!
An ambulance took me to The Royal North Shore Hospital. They scanned my head several times as it had broken the windscreen. Next my back. The result, a lot of internal bleeding in my skull and five minor fractures in my lower-back. I spent 8 days in the spinal unit until they believed I was OK to move. Then an ambulance aircraft flew me to Bairnsdale Hospital A week later I went home. It's now December, I walk slowly without an aid and have just started swimming again - so lucky.
New book. Sept 2018.
An old Australia Vietnam Vet goes on a holiday to Indonesia. He wants to visit a special plant in the jungle that only flowers once every 30 years. After a brief stay in Jakarta; he is ready. A taxi picks him up. He is taken to a large house, drugged and then put on a local train, dressed as a Drug Lord, and then filmed overseeing several drug deals. The plan is to send this video to his family, demand a ransom or if refused, he will be handed over to the local police – a life imprisonment or shot!
A severe jolt by the train as it travels causes a major disruption, he gets off the train, helped by a young Indonesian man and finally has some mates come over from Australia and help him return.
The most difficult problem for the vet, now hiding, is how to contact people in Australia. Difficult because the kidnapper’s main helpers are computer hackers – the best. They have surveillance methods to alert them to any communications the Vet or his acquaintances may use. To overcome the problem, he goes back to his days as a radio operator in Vietnam, uses deeply hidden codes and creates a network. His son, several mates and SAS soldiers assist.
The outcome frightening, horrifying…
Visited Marlo on Sunday 17 and Monday 18 June. Had a meeting with 6 students from the Swifts Creek school about a book they are producing called Local Legends. It's a very good and well thought out project. I enjoyed watching Lucas celebrate his birthday. What a fine young man. The night went well, particularly the supper - thanks Sophie. . On Monday, we began at 9.00am, talked about Maths, science and books I would recommend reading - not one of them mine! and filled in most of the morning. Talk went well, many good questions and comments. Then time to go home. Thank you for your kind comments, hugs and handshakes. Lucas especially spoke very honestly and Scotlan is a a credit to his parents. Too many individuals to thank, including staff.
Enjoy your break, please stay in touch with one another. Marlo is a marvelous school - my favourite.
3rd June 2018
Have had a couple of busy years - nothing to do with writing, the film or publishing.
I am back writing at last and loving it. The fictional story, based in Indonesia is based on an incident I was told some 10 years ago. It was frightening - a kidnapping involving an Australian tourist - wait for more?
Director - Ian Watson.