I don’t have a pre-prepared blog-post for this day.
I don’t have a personal recollection, beyond attending the Amazing Meeting Three and being in the front few rows to hear him present.
I have a friend who went to him in tears of gratitude, after hearing him at a later Amazing Meeting, and he was very kind to her and understanding as to why his talk reduced her to such a state.
I have written previously on how I disagreed with his essay on women in comedy and after reading his autobiography, I know a little more about the circumstances behind his work. I have his book of collected essays, in my car – one of the things I take with me when I know I’m going to be stuck standing in a queue and need something to pass the time that’s more intellectually stimulating than playing Angry Birds on my phone. I can dip into any one of the chapters and find myself challenged, enthralled and hopeful due to his words.
The news came to me via email, as I knelt on the shores of the Swan River here in Perth, taking photographs of swans for a friend’s forthcoming book on science. I was at peace and feeling as if the worries that have plagued me on and off for some time were lifted. It was sunny and the light was beautiful; I hope the photographs I took reflect some of that serenity I was feeling.
I read the email on my phone, as I returned to my car. The world is both a lighter and heavier place again.
We lost Hitchens. That is all.