Sitting in the Agora on a rare Melbourne’s sunny day. I talk to the music students; Michelle, the ‘little red haired girl’ from Doncaster, Janelle, the Principal’s daughter from Yarrawonga, Pete, who drives an old pink car, and James, who is an older student and has a striking resemblance to Barney Rubble. This was not an unusual way to start the day at La Trobe.
Later, I go to a lecture; Peace Studies with Tom Webber. A fantastic lecturer who understood the value of searching for questions rather than just answers. Here, I sit with the quiet but brilliant girl from Menzies College and the Vietnam War veteran who has returned to study.
After lunch, I have a zoology prac. They always felt like they went on forever. My prac partners; a ranger from Parks Victoria with an unusual name, and a girl from the country who lived in Chisholm college and had a passion form James Taylor music.
Then it was time to avoid the temptation of the Union Bar as I walked back to the motorcycle car park and started my journey home.
While I didn’t love the distance I had to travel to get to La Trobe each day, the diversity of experiences and friends that I made while I was there is something that I will treasure forever. It has been 20 years and I have lost contact with most of them by now, our lives have all gone in different directions.
I don’t think Tom was surprised when I graduated and joined the police force. Many years later, I am now a teacher and it is my turn to share a passion for learning and inquiry with the students that I teach…